Sunday, January 31, 2010
Saturday, January 30, 2010
Friday, January 29, 2010
Yesterday I went around the corner and across the road to the to the other bakery in town, simply called the Boulangerie Patisserie. The friendly folks who ran the old mainstay bakery on the Place Dom de Vic for years and years got into financial troubles around the same time the banks did in the US and then Europe, though I don't think there was a close connection, and slunk out of town during the night a year ago this past Fall.
A few months later, the Boulangerie Patisserie became the 'staff of life' bakery here in town. (It is a droit de vie to have fresh bread each day!) They are on the main road and I see working men in their vans and people from outlying hamlets stopping on their way by, in addition to the local, walk-in business. They also supply the fresh bread and croissants that the Utile grocery store, across the main road from them, sells.
I usually buy a half loaf of bread at the market on Saturdays. (I love that it is quite normal to buy "une demi" or half loaf here, so that the bread is not wasted.) My favorite bread vendor at the market, and there are ~10 different ones, is "Bio" (organic) and uses levain natur (natural leavening or sourdough). I like their pain noix (whole wheat walnut) or sesame, pronounced "sess-sam", (whole wheat sesame).
That half loaf lasts me until mid week. Then I go to the Boulangerie Patisserie and get a small loaf of pain cereale (seeded whole wheat). Yesterday, the little lady who works the counter, after our exchange of the ritual "Bonjour, madame!" said "Cereale." before I did. "Oui, merci." I replied, pleased. I've become a regular =o).
It was a little thing, but neighborly (amical). I felt cared for and part of the village in a small but kind way. I took my bread home and enjoyed it for breakfast and dinner with the wonderful beurre aux cristaux de Sel de Mer de Noirmoutier (butter with crystals of sea salt, the whole cube pictured above for the benefit of my friend LC).
Thursday, January 28, 2010
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
I'm the sort of person who sometimes leaves the fairy light/eucalyptus Christmas decorations on the mantle piece until the end of January, just because I like the way they look at night. A kindred spirit seems to live in this house in the village. I was glad to catch their whimsical decorations while they are still up -- a cheery sight on an overcast day.
The lights were on but the bakery was closed. Oh, well, just had to make baked apples for dessert instead. Made a couple extra to share with D and M over tea tomorrow afternoon.
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
Monday, January 25, 2010
Saturday, January 23, 2010
The strange vegetable on the right above is an oven roasted beet, bought already roasted at the marche′. Trust the French, read- made roasted beet! !
Friday, January 22, 2010
Thursday, January 21, 2010
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
Well, not after I'd eaten a slice. It's great that you can get BIO (meaning organic) ready-made pate feuillete'e, fine et croustillante (puff pastry, delicate and crispy) and naturally raised and cured bacon at the new health food store in Revel, just 5 km, or a little over 3 miles, from Soreze.
Monday, January 18, 2010
“Sonny moved, deep within, exactly like someone in torment. I had never before thought of how awful the relationship must be between the musician and his instrument. He has to fill it, this instrument, with the breath of life, his own. He has to make it do what he wants it to do. And a piano is just a piano. It’s mad out of so much wood and wires and little hammers and big ones, and ivory. While there’s only so much you can do with it, the only way to find this out is to try; to try and make it do everything.”
These passages spoke to me of writing. Of how we, as writers, struggle to make the tuneless instrument of the computer keyboard play music of our composition; the parallel truth about our own instrument: “only so much you can do with it, the only way to find this out is to try; to try and make it do everything.”
And in reading the latter passage, it occurred to me that one of the reasons that writers write is in the hope that others will listen, and that, in a way, we will (sic) “never be free until they do”. That those who must write have had an insight into “the long line” of which Baldwin speaks and that, in putting words on paper and working to shape them to capture the attention and imagination of others, we are trying to reproduce this clear glimpse of what life is that we have seen, to give “it back as everything must be given back, so that, passing through death, it can live forever.”
Sunday, January 17, 2010
Saturday, January 16, 2010
Writer's breakfast at the market with a pain de raisin and grand cafe creme at the cafe Au Rosier d'Autan on the square in Revel.