Right now in New York it's really hot. I think it's that way just about everywhere across the country. If I stand outside I can imagine I'm in France again because it was hot there too. It's supposed to be hot - for the sunflowers, the crops, the lavender. The buildings all have big wooden shutters that they close during the day against the scorching sun. The windows might still be open but the shutters keep the hot sun at bay, and it works.
On this day, it was too hot. We took advantage of the cool morning to sit on the terrace and continue stitching the samplers of the chateau. There were some amazing stitch and textile experts in the group. Less like a class, more like a stitchalong, we enjoyed sitting beside each other, sharing colors, stitch choices, tricks of the needle, laughs. So many laughs.
Isn't it inspiring to see the way each is different? Just a stitch or thread choice renders the work unique to the maker. All so pretty!
After lunch we headed for the lavender fields where we were greeted by Nadette, lovely and generous.
She took us out to the field and explained the growing process for lavender, the varieties, the harvesting.
I mentioned it was hot. 112°
Nadette offered us refreshments, her handmade soaps and lavender bundles.
There was time for stitching in the shade and a playful scene with Millie and Laurent.
That car ride home was so fragrant!
Last night I had second thoughts about posting each day as it went, start to finish. This is taking a long time to tell. But the truth is, I won't remember the breakdown of days and adventures if I don't do it now. Already things are blurring together. There is so much I haven't touched on. It looks as if all we did was hop from place to place, shop, eat, drink, wander about the countryside. Behind all these busy moments, we found ourselves part of an adventure that unfolded like an old-fashioned novella. Travel does that. The time spent together along with the unique challenges of the unfamiliar opens us up, shakes out the wrinkles and shows our true colors. As the pattern of days stitched together, our group of random souls became a lovely sampler itself. Sweet friends, each a different design, color, stitch, style.
Throw in some wine, actual stitchwork and late-night talks as the moon rises. Tomorrow you'll find out what happened to my favorite dress after one of those late nights gabbing and story-telling. Wine played a big part throughout.