Monday, April 26, 2010

Spring in the Languedoc...

We now return to our regular scheduled programming....

Just on the off chance, we swung by the airport on Saturday afternoon to see if the full flight back to Bristol had a couple of empty seats. They did, and finally everyone has been returned to their rightful places, albeit 10 days later than planned, and the panic created by the thought of having to live together for the rest of our lives is slowly fading into a distant (but not quite yet humorous) memory.

There is already talk of the next family visit in September. I shall be monitoring the state of all volcanoes within a 2,000 mile radius between now and then very carefully indeed.

And the little ladies are back in school after their 2-week Spring holiday. They came home from school before the break wearing their winter coats and boots, and have now gone back in sandals, sunscreen and short sleeves.

The garden has gone from bare-branches to full-leaf in a matter of 10 days- the hot pink geraniums are flowering in their pots, the purple and white irises are just about finished, and the petals from the blousy pale pink peonies are already scattered on the ground.

The vineyards are budding, changing the hilly landscape around us from stark lines to swathes of green, with cherry and almond blossoms, yellow gorse, and flowering wild rosemary adding little dashes of brillant colour. The sky is that bright, cornflower blue I remember from my childhood set of Crayola crayons. Our windows are open and the birds' nests in the garden are full of movement and chirping.

This has to be my favourite time of year in the Languedoc, before the scorching, bleaching sun reaches its full strength, before the hoardes of holidaymakers crowd the roads, before a fan becomes a necessity for sleeping on a sweltering summer night. Soon running and dog-walking will need to be done very early or very late, and the warmth of the sun on the back of my head will become an unwelcome prospect.

But before I have to arm myself with shade-finding strategies, I'm going to enjoy sitting in my hammock with a good book in the Spring sunshine, where neither the beach or pool yet beckons me, and the act of getting into a swimsuit is still a comfortable couple of months away.

Hope you, too, have a hammock somewhere with your name on it...

9 comments:

AnotherDayofCrazy said...

Ah... what would we do without a hammock to enjoy? Glad to hear the house is yours once more.

The Duchess said...

Thanks ADoC! It reminds me of one of the little ladies books called 'A Squash and a Squeeze'....lol The house has never seemed bigger or more tranquil!

Tammy said...

What a charming description of life back to normal. Did you see the funny article in today's IHT about European stereotypes being reinforced in this volcano episode? Made me giggle, I am sure it's online...

I'm also thoroughly enjoying the rebirth of the countryside. It's seemed a long slog of a winter. Then again, in November we were still eating outside and the autumn leaves were still mostly on the trees. So who am I to complain?

Sara Louise said...

This post made me smile :-)
Flights are flying again, and spring has finally sprung in the south of France. Life is good!

The Duchess said...

Hi Tammy- Didn't see that article, will have to have a look for it. It did seem like an incredibly long winter this year, but than maybe I'm just getting soft.lol

Hi Sara Louise- Thanks! Life is good indeed!:-)

Linda said...

It's lovely to have guests, up to a point, but sometimes even nicer to have your own space back. Big sigh.........

The Duchess said...

Hi Linda- it's funny how as I get older, the more I like 'my' space! lol (Or maybe that's just part of the territory of being a mother of two small girls!lol)

Deeba PAB said...

Loved reading your post. It's beautifully written. Yikes, hard to imagine the unexpected things in life... gosh, am glad you folk are back. Just saw that there's another cloud headed over Scotland. Hang on in there!

The Duchess said...

Hi Deeba-
Thanks for your comment! Some things you just can't plan for, but I think we were one of the lucky ones, at least no one was stuck at the airport! Think some of the Irish airports were closed again yesterday. Hope it doesn't get worse again!