Saturday, December 13, 2014

meanwhile, back at the farmette...

On the upside, it's pretty warm outside!

I start with this flash weather bulletin, because it really is a dismally gray and somber day out there. You can't help but think about it when you look out over the slightly shrouded brown terrain. A dense fog advisory is issued for later and I am so glad that it's not affecting my travels.

The trip yesterday was long but delightfully uneventful. Perhaps the most shocking thing for me was to be asked something by my American seatmate on the long flight over and to stumble in my response. It hadn't taken long for me to become unused to responding in English. I smiled to myself at the effortless way a conversation could proceed again. When speaking in French, there will always come a point where the person I'm talking to will assume that I know more than I do. When I say then -- sorry, I didn't understand that, I get that surprised look, as if the person wants to ask -- why not? I'm just speaking normal French, for God's sake. Yes but...

Still, I was a tired beast by evening, so much so that for the first time ever, I did not even open my suitcase (to see, for example, if there was any damage to the bottle of poppy petal syrup I lugged back). I fixed a light supper of cheeper eggs and quickly after, followed Isie the cat upstairs, leaving Ed to his computer work.

This morning, as I write out all that I have to do in the next week, I ask myself why I always choose to go away just before the holidays. Well, never mind. I put on good music and get to work.

And there is, of course, breakfast. Hi Ed, across the table again!


We go out to check up on the cheepers together. I want protection in case of an Oreo attack, but in fact, the attack never comes. In September, I had been gone three weeks. I came back to a raging rooster! This time, I was away only twelve days. I'm learning that a rooster's memory is good for twelve days!



Grocery shopping, errand running -- that takes up the better part of the daylight hours. One very pleasant errand is to take over some of the small purchased items to the expectant parents. I'm less than four weeks from becoming a grandmother. It feels very close!

(Yes, this is the place where I get to visit, too, with their very playful cats. Playful, but respectful of their beautiful Christmas tree, thank goodness!)



At home, the cheepers, noting that I am back at the farmhouse and remembering that I often give them treats just outside the farmhouse door, make the long trudge over and surprise me with their happy faces.


Inside, I put up our "tree" -- it takesonly five minutes!


And as I sit down to do some writing, I think for the millionth time how much I love being home and how strange it is that I really do have a burning urge to cross the ocean again and again. Even as these days and evenings at home fill me with such total peace and happiness.

In the evening I make broccoli veloute -- a smooth soup that tries to imitate one I had in France.


Within just these few hours, I'm fully immersed in my life back here,  but little bits of travel creep into the everyday. The best souvenirs are the ideas that I bring back home to try out here, in my own foggy corner of the world.