Monday, May 20, 2013

Lucky you



Lucky you.

That phrase kept coming back to me last week like a boomerang, one always thrown with the finest of intentions. 

Lucky you to live in Provence. "Yes, yes, I know," I respond, automatically. For that is the awaited reply, the proper one as well. 

But as I have mentioned in the past, just because I hang my hat in this lauded region doesn't mean that the everyday stress of life magically disappears. So while all is relatively well, health intact etc., Remi and I found ourselves in strong need of a soupape, a breather to let off the steam fogging up our vision.

We have discovered something of a spot of the "c'est réellement un spot ici" kind. It isn't terribly well known, even amongst the Provençaux. A Secret Provence? Yes, it does exist but if you think I am going to tell you where it is, you overestimate my otherwise generous nature...at least for now.

Perhaps I am simply being my superstitious self. For every time we visit, no matter what worries pre-occupy our busy minds, they disappear like dandelion fluff. I am holding tight to my little talisman.

Yesterday the rain threatened, bullyishly, despite having already trapped us inside all weekend. But it passed. The path was still wet and we had to keep a strict eye on the furry ones who longed to roll in the mud.

For the first time, I had taken my camera with me, certain that the act of choosing to look would bring about something positive as it always does. And although I am not as thrilled with the photos as I was in taking them, I am content in the memory of that two hour stroll.

For as that golden light, the one that side-swipes the dark broke through, I stopped walking for a moment and a thought without thinking misted over me: "It really is beautiful, Provence." Vision cleared.

Lucky me.

















57 comments:

Coulda shoulda woulda said...

I don't know what else to add but only confirm you really are lucky!!

Sue B said...

A beautiful post, today. And you know what....please don't tell us where it is. We should all try to find our own little hidden place.

Aussie in France said...

So true! People imagine that just because you live in Paris or in Provence, the everyday annoyances don't exist. We, too, have our secret places.

david terry said...

Well, Dear Old Heather.....

I believe I've already sent this poem to you and Remi, along with your portrait this past christmas, as I recall.

In any case.....do keep hold of those talismans of yours, and DO keep recalling that you (like all of us) are generally luckier than is immediately apparent on any given day.

A lot of days are plain-out shitty and unpleasant, no matter where you are or who you're with (the EASIEST thing to forget/take for granted is how lucky you are to be with that someone).....trust me.... I know.

For the moment?....here's that poem again....for you and Remi:

Recuerdo

WE were very tired, we were very merry—
We had gone back and forth all night on the ferry.
It was bare and bright, and smelled like a stable—
But we looked into a fire, we leaned across a table,
We lay on a hill-top underneath the moon;
And the whistles kept blowing, and the dawn came soon.

We were very tired, we were very merry—
We had gone back and forth all night on the ferry;
And you ate an apple, and I ate a pear,
From a dozen of each we had bought somewhere;
And the sky went wan, and the wind came cold,
And the sun rose dripping, a bucketful of gold.

We were very tired, we were very merry,
We had gone back and forth all night on the ferry.
We hailed "Good morrow, mother!" to a shawl-covered head,
And bought a morning paper, which neither of us read;
And she wept, "God bless you!" for the apples and pears,
And we gave her all our money but our subway fares.

(Edna St. Vincent Millay, 1926)

Quite sincerely, and thanks for the very lovely posting today,

David Terry
www.davidterryart.com

(P.S. you really are hitting your stride as a writer.....I've been reading your stuff for a long while now).

judithaross.com said...

Beautiful words and thoughts. And who, you may ask, were you totally in synch with? Why me, of course! I took my camera out to capture my garden in the morning light to help myself focus on the geraniums, columbine, and forget-me-nots rather than the weeds.

George Snyder said...

The way you capture the light there is so wonderful. In Hollywood we call it "magic hour' but where you are it just seems magical. Thank you for sharing.
XXXX

joyful17 said...

Once again you touch our souls...and the pictures. The pictures are special to me because they are so like so many photos I have taken...the sky, the tree branches, some water, a flower....a tree trunk..
When I am in the country ( north of Montreal ) and stroll a country road, I too wish to capture the simple beauty that presents itself.
So thank you again...and everyone who shares these moments with you.

Loree said...

Yes, it really is beautiful and so are your photos. I can understand though that the magic sometimes fades and that the grass may seem greener in some other pasture.

puppyfur said...

"I don't know what you're on about", my husband likes to say. This time, I'll say it, too. The photos are exquisite, and were the perfect complement to what you wrote.

Lost in Provence said...

David, dear Uncle Reverend Never Plain David, that just our right made me cry happy tears (I would say) that you resent that most beautiful poem that I have never forgotten that you originally gave with your fine, fine work--it says so much. We don't take any of it for granted. I can promise you that. Although I will be shy to do so, I look forward to the day, I can take your hand and look you in the eye to tell you so.

Barbara Dyke said...

I always enjoy reading your posts. I understand just how you feel when someone says'your so lucky living where you are' when we moved to France 23yrs ago so many people said the same thing to us & still do. as you so rightly said we all have are daily toils & ups & downs wherever we live. As always your photos are wonderful, but where are your beautiful furry friends ?

Laoch of Chicago said...

This made me smile.

Sandy at You May Be Wandering said...

So lovely...thank you for this!

helen tilston said...

Hi Heather

Incredible pictures from your secret place. Thanks for sharing.Helenxx

Unknown said...

Yes, Provence really is beautiful, and your photographs show us that so vividly. They reveal to us so much that we would miss if we were there. And I suspect you have found beauty everywhere you have been.

I am glad you, Remi and the puppers got the soupape that you needed. Thank you for showing us your secret place and telling us about it. That's all we need to know!
Your admiring friend, Leslie in Portland

P.S. Do you know what the plant in the second photograph is? It almost looks like a variety of borage.

david terry said...

Oh, Heather.....not to go entirely all skool-marmy on you, but?....

I read that and thought "Why in the world would she think I 'resented' the poem????".....

....and then I realized that you'd simply omitted the dash.

Next time round, type "re-sent"; otherwise, you'll keep scaring me.


----david

simpleimages2 said...

Nature like love seems to solve everything.

The rich colors of the place and the clear sky express the abundant gratitude you felt.

"It really is beautiful, Provence."

Glamour Drops said...

yes, but I rather suspect you would find beauty wherever you are....she says laughing...because my dear friend, it's not the beauty of provence that you find...it's the beauty of beauty which your thoughtful eyes see wherever you go, I do believe.

having said that, of course it helps that provence IS so incredibly beautiful....

Lorrie said...

Visiting a place is so different from living there. Daily life is full of ups and downs anywhere in the world. Beauty abounds in Provence - I'm glad you've found a place to escape from everyday life.

Lost in Provence said...

David, I just read my response again and immediately thought the same thing!! That's what typing through misty eyes will get you... :)

Lost in Provence said...

Each of us in our own way, N. :)

Lost in Provence said...

I love your response, Sue!

Lost in Provence said...

Glad to hear it. And yep, you know that laundry still has to be done and bills paid...

Lost in Provence said...

We are often in sync, Judith...

Lost in Provence said...

For sure, we never know when magic hour will be here, George. But at this time of year it is often at the end of the day or sunset. Yep, Hollywood doesn't own ALL of the magic even if they do conjure up a mighty fine parcel of it. :)
Bisous!

Lost in Provence said...

I bet your countryside is glorious! And we are lucky ones indeed to be able to appreciate it.

Lost in Provence said...

It isn't that I necessarily long for elsewhere, Loree, just a little less worries!

Lost in Provence said...

Merci beaucoup puppyfur.

Lost in Provence said...

Oooh, is that a request? :) I certainly don't need much encouragement--save that Kipling has been running so far up ahead lately that he is a mere dot!!!

Lost in Provence said...

Then it did its job. :)

Lost in Provence said...

You are welcome, Sandy--it is too pretty not to share!

Lost in Provence said...

Helen, there is so much that I can imagine you painting here! I think you would be aux anges...
xo,
H

Lost in Provence said...

I am so sorry Leslie, I have no idea what that plant is! But it certainly is beautiful...The foliage all around was so thick and varied--like a carpet.

And always, thank you SO much friend for your wonderful words and perspective...
xo,
H

Lost in Provence said...

Thank you, Edgar. You understand perfectly.

Lost in Provence said...

You are so generous in your kindness, V. Thank you. And I will agree with you in that it just takes looking...I can't always capture what I see yet but that act of opening up feels mighty wonderful wherever it might be.
Love to you!

Lost in Provence said...

We all need it Lorrie. You also live in an incredibly beautiful place and yet we still have our ups and downs!

Slim Paley said...

That's a raw beauty, with nary a nudge from man.

La Contessa said...

WE are all lucky to have you sharing these photos!
How are the wedding plans going?FRANCE??OR AMERICA?Do tell............

Lost in Provence said...

And far more of a nudge from Nature. She trumps. The Rhone was at it its highest levels that I have seen since we lived here and it was impressive indeed...

Lost in Provence said...

The way you speak of it, you would think that I was the one getting married! :) Nothing decided yet for lots of reasons and decisions, they are taking their time.
Bisous!

Karen Albert said...

Dear Heather, your images are always so comforting to me, Thank you for using your gift and shring it!

Come with me on my adventure in France.
life, possibilities, grace
a beautiful dream...

xoxo
Karena
Art by Karena

Heather Lindstrom said...

Hello Heather-Happy to meet another Heather in blog world.
Your images are some of the most beautiful I have seen of this part of the world.
I'll hold back on the 'lucky you' and thank you for sharing such beauty through
your lens. I'll look forward to following your blog for more.
Cheers, Heather @ Stylemindchic

robin said...

Wow - I would add, "lucky us"! These photos are uh-may-zing - I love the color and the light. I'm so glad you brought your camera along! That purple flower? Dueling butterflies?? And methinks I see a heart shape in those rocks!! And most of all, I love the "lucky you", as I believe gratitude to be one of the most important components of happiness. Lucky me that I have such a wonderful, talented sister!

La Contessa said...

Well,that would make a good post!Remi.................what is the hold up?She is adorable, she can write she can take photos and she cooks!Plus, she speaks two languages!I think you should put a ring in an ice cube,(I know they do not serve ice cubes over yonder)but freeze a ring in a cube of ice then make her an aperitif with the cube......donot say anything until she spies it then she will be a wild red haired DAME waiting for the ice to melt!It would make a good POST.....PLEASE!!!
GET MARRIED...........YOU have the two most adorable flower BOYS!
XXX

manon 21 said...

De belles images de la Provence.

Bonne journée

Manon

Lost in Provence said...

I thought that I had already visited! Will go back and double check. Dreams are always beautiful when they involve France!
xo,
H

Lost in Provence said...

I am sitting here, smiling, just shaking my head! I am not going to say a WORD!

Lost in Provence said...

Hello fellow Heather! :) And thanks for signing up, there are lovely people here, you'll see.
Have a great day in Cali!

Lost in Provence said...

Love you so much, Sister. You made my day...

Lost in Provence said...

Merci, Manon mais vous savez autant que moi que ces photos sont just du "point and clic"...c'est la Provence qui est belle... ;)

Bonne journée à vous aussi,
H

Acquired Objects said...

We all need a quiet place where we can let things go and I'm lucky enough to have one too that I don't share. Otherwise it's stops being a quiet place. I had to smile at your furry friends wanting to roll in mud. Dylan had a bubble bath Thursday morning, Thursday afternoon I found him upside down in mud trying to get the fresh stink off him.....lol. Ya gotta love them!

XXX
Debra~

Pam said...

i get this a lot lately...how lucky we are. and yes. we are lucky. but it wasn't luck that brought us here. it was a lot of hard work on both my husbands' and my part. and yes...although we live in this amazing city called paris..we still have to live our lives. i have 4 children..i'm dealing with curfews, and illnesses, and potty training! but, i do get to do it all in paris. :)
i am a very lucky girl indeed.
and i can't wait to visit provence this summer!! xo

vicki archer said...

Luck... is often a lot of hard, had work... and knowing when you are 'lucky'... well, sometimes that is even harder. :) xv

Lost in Provence said...

We both held their collars as we walked past the big puddles, D--you know they wanted to get in there and roll around!! And here in our current apartment it is SO hard to wash them off. But I love imagining DD doing the job! :)

Lost in Provence said...

Oooh Pam, you will love it!! My email is on my profile...write me if you need any suggestions of where to go! :)

Lost in Provence said...

So perfectly said, Vicki. I know that more and more I need these little "time outs" (like for a child!!!) to get me out of my head and into the present...

Sara Louise said...

Yes, we are very lucky to live in this, one of the most beautiful places in the world, but as I remind people, life isn't a holiday, it's still life. And even if the view outside our windows are what dreams are made of, life inside those windows is still life and comes with all of the same stresses and worries as everyplace else x