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Axat-Things I’ll miss most

Thursday, August 9, 2012

homeIt goes without saying that life in a small French Village is different from life in a metropolitan city in the USA. But what specifically are the things which I’ll miss most about this quite, little speck in Europe when we close up the house and say ‘a bientot’ until next summer?


~ the silence, dotted by bird calls, or chickens clucking, or the gentle breeze, or the laughter and chatter of neighbors nearby

~ the cool nights sleeping with the fresh, mountain air blowing through screens

~ the restfulness of days unencumbered by obligations

~ open air markets, fresh produce, proud vendors happy to give samples of their products, gentle smiles, warm au revoirs

~ afternoon naps

~ bedding freshened, whitened, and crisped by hanging outside in the sunshine

~ the smell of warm fig trees loaded with fruit, lavender bushes, roses, French coffee after dessert

~ playing fetch up and down the staircase with Milhaud

~ buying meat, bread, eggs, cheese, sausages, and more from individual shopkeepers

~ the inconvenience of local shop hours (I’ll explain: local shops are open for a few hours in the morning, usually 7:30 or so until noon…or 12:30 maybe. Then everything closes up until 3:00 or so and they only reopen until 7:00 or 7:30pm. That’s it. Sundays are limited to only some shops, and only until 11:30 or noon. Mondays are further complicated by the fact that no trucks are allowed on the roads on Sunday – so nothing gets delivered for Monday – so many shops and restaurants are closed Monday, or Monday morning. This is not a 24/7 kind of world and for that I am eternally pleased. It forces me to plan, to buy fresh, to be responsible and timely. And this gives the hard working shopkeepers a well needed and deserved break every day for a civilized lunch break of at least 2 hours…plus a nap. I’m in favor of this system.)

~ the food – nuf’ said

~ the wine…double nuf’ said

~ the option to drive 1-hour in any direction and experience a totally different scenery and terrain; mountains, beach, high valley fields of crops or sunflowers

~ Madame Paulette; Liliane & Pierrot; Jean walking his beautiful golden retriever, Visa, past the house; Poul & Lone; Pierre & Paulette; our High Village Association friends and neighbors and all of the fun events they host; the wonderfully friendly people we meet on our journeys. Other countries (including the USA) could learn quite a bit about civility, hospitality, cordiality, acceptance, patience, and kindness from the French.

~ our darling, little house with the pretty periwinkle blue shutters and all of the cozy things we’ve put inside of it

~ the zillions upon zillions of stars we see in the night sky

~ the silence


Now, it’s time for my nap.

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