It is that moment just after the final touch of sunlight. On the lower square of Sorède, there's music playing. People clap, some do a few twirls and steps in the open spaces. Most sit, sip, talk. We're all waiting for our paella.
It is June 21st -- France's Fete de la Musique.
Tables at the Rugby Bar are, for once, packed. We are there, among the diners. Families, couples, the usual mix of everyone.
This is almost a preshow. In two days, the entire village -- hundreds of people will dance the traditional Catalan Sardana (I wont see it -- we'll be gone). But today this smaller crowd tap tap taps and waits.
The musicians are a mixed band. Local, I have to think they didn't travel far to be here. They play mostly French stuff, though I hear a Beatles song and a Chubby Checker. Ancient stuff.
We're speeding toward our last days in Sorède. And we're not good at this "last" business. What should we do today rather than tomorrow? Where should we walk? Shop? Eat? Buy bread?
Okay, let's start with the givens: we must walk down to our bakery, purchase the pain au chocolat, take it to the cafe bar on the upper square. (Theme for the day: Ed deals with the lovely vendors of Sorède.)
vendor no.1, at our local bakery
At cafe bar, he reads, I write. And we talk about a legal issue out there that sort of interests us both.
We continue to chat as we take a short walk through town. Past the elementary school where the kids are at recess (it seems that all boys wear knee length pants and all girls, all of them, wear sundresses and sandals)...
...past the old village houses...
Past "La Ciboulette," where dogs seem to follow in the habits of their owners -- they come here to chat. We come here for the inexpensive (1.5 Euro per kilo) great peaches.
Inside, we notice more peaches. Slightly higher in price. I ask why? I'm told - they're local The cheap ones outside are from Spain. (Ed reminds me that where we are, Spain in "local.")
vendor no.2, at La Ciboulette
We're home. Now what? Cheese! We need more cheese! We have some, but not enough for two days. So a drive is necessary! To the supermarket. And so long as we're there, we might as well stop at Le Fournil for La Petrie, the best, truly the best baguette. And hey, let's just try, to compare you know, their Napoleon (mille feuille).
vendor no.3, at Le Fournil
Le dejeuner en plein air (lunch outside, on the terrace).
It's warmer today. There's a mugginess in the air that the evening wind will push away, but for now, it's sticky outside. Ed loses himself in some project or other, I nap.You could say I sleep away the possibility of a hike. But not the beach! There has to be time for an evening swim at Le Racou!
Bouncy waters. Ed swims far off into the sea, I tread closer to the shore. Yes, that's us alright: he pushes boundaries and I do too, even as my boundaries are drawn differently than his.
We shower at the beach. No time to return home before dinner. The wind is picking up now and the water from the outdoor faucets sprays in all directions. Push the handle, chase the water. A game, to be repeated many times until we're satisfied that enough salt has been washed off.
And finally the paella, the music, the mix of people...
Young and lovely, old and lovely and a great mix of in between.
With ice cream for all to finish the meal.
Tap tap tap, swirl, talk, always the talk.
(Tomorrow's post will come slightly later as we make our way back to Spain.)