After a long journey by car I am now resident en France for the next few weeks. Good to be back. The sun is not at full strength to day but even so I gave up sitting in it after an hour. My pale white English skin will turn lobster pink if I don’t expose myself bit by bit. (If that sounds vaguely rude, I apologise.) But given time and patience I shall turn brown; I have the sort of skin chemicals or proteins or whatever it is that turns sin brown. A lady from Israel, sitting beside me by the lake during my time as a summer camp councillor in Maine, once remarked that I had a “nice colour in my skin.” Not everyone has, she explained.
This time when we arrived the first thing that struck me about this green lush valley in the Dordogne is the complete absence of sound. Granted the birds sing with extraordinary energy and the wind rustles through the millions of green, shiny leaves, but the sound of humans is absent. Gone. Disappeared. The distant chug of a tractor mowing an adjacent field later this morning was something worthy of my getting up and taking a look.
I think it may have inspired DH, because he is now outside, wearing my sunhat, driving the mini tractor round and round the meadows to bring the knee-high grass to a manageable level. A shame in a way, because among the grasses are the yellow iris, and all the other wildflowers that bloom unseen and keep the bees and presumably themselves happy. Near the lake, the young frogs will leap out of harm’s way ahead of him.