Sunday, June 14, 2009


Hello from Provence!

I am toasting away to golden perfection in the sun here. My tan has never looked better. Currently I'm inhabiting La ferme de Noé, where it takes 50 minutes to walk to the nearest town. I look after potatoes, cucumbers, zucchinis, tomatoes, beans, and herbs among other plants, and some chickens, ducks and turkey. I know, right? And some crazy cats and dogs, too. I'm going to kidnap one of the wee little chatons and put him in a tea cup, because I can.

I want to show you my photos of the spectacular landscapes here, but computer use is limited (although Kitty is being very patient). I'm also speaking a lot more French than I would've ever thought, and I think I could survive here if I had to, despite the stifling language barrier.

So far, I've seen a day of Paris, two days of Marseille, some Aix and of course, Trets, the only town we can get to on foot before passing out in the Provence sun. Marseille, I was told, is dangerous and harsh, but my experience there was filled with kindness. Maybe it was my first view of the Mediterranean that rendered me blind, but I loved it there. Aix was also so, so amazing: Home to Cézanne's beautiful landscapes, and much of the subjects of his glowing portraiture. I wish I had more time in both cities, but it won't be my last time in Europe so there is always next time...

Among other things so far, I've sat in the back of a cop car (and spoke some fantastic franglais), and let some harmless but strange foreigners at a bar buy a round of Panaché (beer mixed with pop) for me and my colleagues at a tobacco shop (alcohol at a tabac is quite common here)... More adventures to come!

ps. Some of the best shows happen in Toronto when I'm not there: Ohbijou and Sunparlour Players at Soundscapes, Black Hat Brigade at NxNE... GET ON IT, TORONTO FOLKS.


TM said...

Ah I'm so happy you're loving it! Aix is somewhere I would love to visit again in the future. Such wonderful people and beautiful country. I'm glad you've taken to Marseilles. That wasn't a town I could quite figure out, though the sea is stunning! Keep up the french and enjoy the gorgeous Provencal sun!

Janneke said...

So glad you are having a great time! I keep hearing Marseilles is dangerous too... we're going to try it out even though Jenn is pretty against going. Tell me more about the city!!

France schedule (sowecanmeetupmaybe!!!)
July 11-15 Paris
July 16 + 17 Marseilles
July 18 + 19 Cannes
July 20 + 21 Nice

esther said...

Just don't walk around on your own with your luggage, ignore the numerous men that hit on you, don't walk alone at nights. Go into one of the many Turkish baked goods shops and have a mint tea, go to the beach and go see the ancient Roman fortresses. I didn't get to go but you should also go to If (take a boat), the background for the Count of Monte Cristo!