I'm having a GLORIOUS time! My mother is getting well! Just talked to her and she sounds like her old self--- she's gaining a bit of weight, she's keeping everyone there on their toes, and she's put in a request/command for some seriously arcane Italian perfume, which she's sure I'll be able to find in Paris, even though I think it has been discontinued. If it's gettable, I'll find it.
Casey Toussaint came for a couple of days, and as each day proved more perfect than the last, we extended her stay for a week! There is nothing like careening around France with another artist who just wants to draw and have fun! Check her blog in the next few days and see how different our takes are on all that we saw and rendered!
The getting here was way more eventful than I'd have liked, but the being here has been heavenly. I, who usually get up around 5 am, have slept until 8:30! Okay, just once, but still. That says a lot about how peaceful it is here. I'm way out in rural, inland Brittany, about an hour and a quarter from the north and south coasts. I'm not listening to or watching television, or the radio, or anything, except the quiet world around me. At night, there are many unfamiliar sounds: the rustling of the house, the wails and muffled cries of nocturnal animals. After the first night, I packed away the murder mysteries I'd brought from home to read here. Now I sleep much better ;D.
Here are my first sketches.
I spent a perfect golden afternoon today in Moncontour with talented and graceful poet and photographer/blogger Lucy and her dashing and witty husband, Tom (thanks again for a lovely lunch, you two). Tomorrow Casey comes for a visit. Her husband Michel follows on Friday. Casey and I will be driving to various coastal spots and sketching madly. A bientot!
There must be a zillion blog posts with this title, but perhaps you won't mind one more. Yes, I'm en route to Paris, via American Airlines # 44 today, and then to Rennes, Brittany, via TGV 5214 tomorrow morning, and then, via rental car, to Josselin, tomorrow afternoon. And then to that peaceful house in the Breton countryside where I hope to spend some solitary, paint-filled, and restorative days. In early October, my husband and two dear friends will join me.
To say that I feel scattered, at this point, is to understate the situation. Let us fervently hope that the various Laureline parts arrive at their final destination, tout ensemble, tomorrow. Let us pray that my mother continues her slow recovery and that all will be well for everyone (including you!) over the next days and weeks.
Here are two travel sketches from past adventures of mine, just for fun. Sketches from Brittany are next on the agenda! See you soon!
they'd probably say 'eat your vegetables.' This past Saturday, my husband and I, after a long day of caring for my mother, went out to eat at a nifty tapas restaurant in Charlotte. The food was terrific and very authentic---actually, it was even better than several of the meals we had in Barcelona last fall. The decor, however, induced great feelings of guilt.
I am still hoping to leave for Brittany this Friday. Hoping, planning. We will see what happens.
The small mill town that lives cheek by jowl with my hometown calls itself, with all due irony, the' Paris of the Piedmont.' For a few years, the town even held a Fête de la Musique, as French towns do, each summer. Now, there aren't many Parisian vestiges, ironic or not, to be found here---except one. It's Carrboro's own version of the Wallace fountains you see tucked here and there, in Parisian quartiers. Here it is, with a sketch I made in 2006 of a Wallace fountain in Saint-Germain des Près.
One of these fountains has understated elegance and a sense of proportion---it's the fountain version of the Little Black Dress. The other one, trying to be all uptown and stylish, has loaded itself down with frills and furbelows. It's the fountain version of Dolly Parton. The world is, thank heavens, big enough for both.
If all goes well, I will be in Paris and then Brittany in less than two weeks. I'm packing lightly, knowing I may have to turn around and come home fast, if my mother takes a turn for the worse. Right now, her big health issues are resolved. Pain management is coming along nicely. She has family members and home help with her 7 days a week. Until I leave, I'll be driving back and forth to her hometown, as I have since early August. It's so wonderful seeing her recover, even if slowly, from her traumatic fall .