I have been back exactly one month from my Wonderful France trip, and one thing is really clear to me — I want to go back! France has that great mix of serenity — Saint Paul de Vence and Saint-Maximin-la-Sainte-Balme — to high profile sophistication of Monaco, Monte Carlo, Nice and Lyon– to the just plain fast pace as you would find in exciting Paris.
When I say I felt freer than I have in my entire life, I mean it. I was free to meet new people — adventuresome Australians, caring Canadians and all ablaze Americans. I was free to try my first Pastis and my first Floating Island. I unapologetically and unashamably took pictures of all the iconic Parisian and uniquely French sites, while at the same time taking photos of some of the most unsuspecting aspects of life in France. You know the ones that cause you to ask yourself “who would be interested in this photo?”
The food, the food, the food! Who knew that ordinary chicken could express its Frenchness in so many different ways. I actually had Coq Au Vin! Who knew that macarons taste better in Aix? Who knew I would eat at Paul Bocuse’s Lyonaise Restaurant in Lyon? And, oh, The boulangeries, charcuteries and the plentiful open air markets (St. Tropez) too big to navigate in one visit. I had fun trying, though!
Who knew that I would find a bracelet laden with Swarovski Crystals for little or nothing?! I came back loaded down not with clothing, but with tee shirts and refrigerator magnets shouting out Côte D’Azur, Avignon, Arles and Cannes!
I am determined to cook something — anything — with those cooking herbs from Provence, and then lay that meal atop the Provençal linen that I purchased.
Yes, I’m a newly minted Froncophile. Can’t you tell? Actually, I’ve been one for a while through my mental travels, visits to French restaurants in Chicago, and through the writings of James Baldwin, Richard Wright, Peter Mayle, Julia Child and a good number of Expats, who like me, have that Love of France Disease.
France, who knew I would miss you this much? #thisidoforme.com