Sunday, August 29, 2010

Parting is such sweet sorrow

We are leaving the farm house in about two hours, headed to Paris to spend the afternoon shopping and the evening going up to the top of the Eiffel Tower to see Paris at night.  We are then staying at a hotel close to the airport and catching our 9:25 am flight tomorrow morning.  We are scheduled to land about 4:00 pm in LA, after a change in Houston.  Our connection in Houston is very short (about an hour) and I didn't realize that we had to go through customs in Houston (meaning we have to get our luggage, go through customs, recheck our luggage and make our flight), so there's a good chance we're going to miss our original flight from Houston to LA.  The pre-France Steph would have been frantic.  She has NEVER missed a flight.  Never, ever!   The post-France Steph says c'est la vie, whatever happens, happens.  (It could also have something to do with the fact that I'm not really ready to come home, so any little delay is ok with me!)

Last night, our friends the Mopins, had us over for dinner.  It was a fabulous dinner and a great night!  We can truly say that these folks are now our friends.  They are sending their oldest daughter to spend a month with us next summer and we're hoping they'll come visit for a couple of weeks next year too.  We are also looking at spending another month in France next year (perhaps in Strasbourg) and they've invited us to stay with them for a bit.  We are so lucky to have met them!

Here are a few photos from last night.

Here's Eva, their beautiful Percheron draft horse.

Here's Mona, Juliet & Laurent, plus most of us.

Juliet will be visiting us next summer.

Part of their lovely country home.

Appetizers....lovely, yummy grougeres that Juliet made (best we had in France!)

Sitting down for dinner.

Absolutely fabulous beef meal we had in France....everyone swiped their plates clean (with bread of course!!!)  Mona made an incredible tiramisu for dessert, which I didn't get a photo of...c'est tres bon!

And, of course, wonderful wine!

Our delightful hosts...Laurent & Johanna!

This might be my last post from France.  I don't know if we'll have wifi at the hotel and if we do, whether I'll be too tired to write.  This won't be my last post though.  I've found writing my blog to be very cathartic.  Both what I actually write and what I just say in my head, but choose not to share with the world.  That's the stuff that's probably been most helpful for me.  So, I'm going to keep writing.  We'll see if I have anything interesting to say once I get home.

I did want to write about the sunflowers.  The sunflowers here are an absolute metaphor for our time in France.  When we landed and drove to our new home, we saw fields of beautiful green, next to the golden fields of hay and wheat.  We didn't know what they were.  Even after we got out and looked at the plants, we couldn't quite tell what they were...they were still new....still a mystery, just like our new home.

And then, the sunflowers decided to reveal themselves...just as we were discovering France and starting to understand her ways a little bit.  Her beauty, her mystery, her great food, her wonderful people.

And now it's time to leave...we're sad to leave.  We've had a wonderful that we will never forget.  And we feel a little like the sunflowers, who are at the end of their season, waiting to be harvested.

Still beautiful, in their own special way.

Au revoir...bonne journee!


bmsloyan said...

Stephanie, your trip has been an absolute pleasure, albeit a vicarious one. When I was in France as a much younger woman, I was never in love with it, nor had expectations of returning, but now! Plotting, planning and daydreaming of seeing its beauty with my family! Thank you so much! Bon Voyage!

heather said...

Thanks for sharing Steph...Said (my fiance) was planning a honeymoon to Europe..was not excited about it..From reading your blog..I'm excited and wondering if I will have a great time like you did! Wow!! Thanks for sharing again!

Steph said...

Bridgid, I'm so glad we inspired you! It was really a treat to share this experience with the teens & pre-teens on our trip. They got something completely different from it than James and I. I know we created memories that will last their life time!
Heather, I'm sure you and Said will have a fabulous trip. There is so much to see and do and eat...there's no way you won't have an amazing trip! (And what a fabulous honeymoon!!!)

KevinCromley said...

great metaphor w Sunflowers Steph....would love to hear those deep thoughts too... P.S. I love sunflower seeds!