Saturday, May 10, 2014


We'll be back in my lovely Sablet in a few days. We have missed it so much  :)

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Six more sleeps...

until we're home again. And so Joss and I set off for a morning ramble down a little chemin that we've walked in every season now. We spend a lot of time fighting through brambles, a  lot of time calling the dogs to come out of the mud - they do love the mud! -

 and we gather branches of box and laurel and bay for Joss's family's Easter table.

And I realise I'll be gone before Easter comes.
But our landlords, Pierre and Christine come to take us out for lunch at les GenĂȘts (blog-mate Michel's excellent review is here) which is delicious in every way:
 perfect food, good wine, and the most convivial company. A lovely afternoon and full of laughter.

I will miss Joss, though - and our walks through the chemin.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

So - packing is fun

But I've said that before, haven't I? This week is full of last things - last walks to Seguret, last vide grenier, last Vaison marche, last dinners with friends. I cleared out my study today

and turned it back into a bedroom, for the next people. You'll love it, Next People. You can start your new novel in there -

(I did.)

Or you could use it for a bedroom again, of course, when your friends come over. We did that, too. 

Little finches will come to the window if you hang a seed-ball up for them on the shutter latch. The church bell starts to toll the hour at seven a.m., but it isn't intrusive. I left some pins in the cork-board for you, two stamps and a couple of pens and postcards in the top drawer of the desk. Because people love postcards.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Joss and  Mme E. take us up to see the church today - and I lose my heart to it immediately.

I have loved it all year, of course, when it tolls every hour (twice, in case you lost count the first time - Sablet is that kind of village) and every half hour when it whispers a kind of  "Yes, the day's passing, but slowly - no rush. Don't rush." It's ringing five as I write this and I wonder if I will be able to recall the exact warm note and tone of the bell when I'm finally back home again. I'd record it, but knowing that it was only recorded would be too sad to bear.

The only thing we can possibly do, then, is come back to hear it again.

It's the loveliest church I've ever been in, and I've been in some churches. Built in two centuries - the 12th and 14th - it is smaller than some. It is just the right size, in fact; and so bright, with the well-worn floor and  the thick, thick walls that are full of the whispers of calm and cool and silence.

A beautiful place

Next Book (not New Book, but the one after) is going to be set in a village in France, with just such a church as this - and it will be funny and bright and full of love and laughter.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Saddest thing on my front gate...

Just breaks your heart. We've rented here for a year and our lease is almost up and the owners feel like the time has come to move on and so - gulp - the sign has gone up. I think it will sell very quickly, and oh, I hope the new people love it as much as we have loved it, as much as all our friends loved it, and Joan and Greg, who rented  the year before we did - and as much as all the other people over the years. It's really a gorgeous house - and look at that sky.

So we're trying to fill these last days with goodbyes and final glimpses of places we loved - as well as places we almost missed seeing. Last week we found our way to an old Roman Camp which is all deserted tracks and spills of stone and small, scrubby bushes of rose and thorn and thyme -  and as we were leaving I looked at my boots (I like my hiking boots when they're hiking) and there on the ground beside them, face up and dusty, an old little button - a circlet of metal with pale yellow glass inset. We  asked at the tiny museum in town, and the man (just an amateur, he said, but he spends every weekend out in the fields) pursed his mouth and nodded and gleamed a little and said,

"Yes.  Roman. Well done."

He might have been kidding, of course - he was only an amateur - but still.

When we asked if we could keep it he said  "But of course. By the right of your eye."

So it's probably only a button. But it's one of my treasures, now - if for nothing else than that wonderful moment of finding. 

And to show you when we come home. 

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Two more weeks


I'm going to miss the Mistral most of all. If you could hear it now, moaning around the house and battering at the shutters!

I'm going to miss it.