As I mentioned in passing, this little house dates back to the
14th Century and used to be the baker. The outside bread oven collapsed not so long ago and had to be filled in and recreated to look the original..if you look carefully on the left hand side of the house in the photo, you can see the dome of the old oven. The French kind of like to keep lots of old forests in between farms and the old building have to stay as close to the original as possible. But, having said that, they don’t seem to mind the owner making it as comfy as possible so a lot of the old houses now have double glazed windows (as ours does), wood burners and wall convection heaters instead of open fireplaces (as ours does) and all the kitchen/laundry /bathroom bells and whistles needed to make life comfy (as ours does). The great thing about this little house with it’s half meter thick walls is that it’s amazingly warm and thank heavens for that.
We woke up the other night to this tick,tick, tick on the windows. It was raining so to hear this noise seemed a bit odd…while we lay there listening, in between the “ticking” came this sort of muffled slooshing sound as if someone was throwing mud at the window and as dawn came, we realized what the night time orchestra was all about. The rain, which made a really loud pattering on the windows as it was driven across the lake by the wind, was interspersed with the slooshing sound of “slush puppy” being
hurled at the house as well…sleet and icy slush was sliding down the windows and in between all that, the high pitched ticking sound was frozen rain. I don’t mean hail as we know hail to be..I mean frozen raindrops…tiny little balls of ice that danced off the roof, filled up the gutters and lay in sweeps across the roof of the main house on the opposite side of the lake. I’ve never seen anything like it and was quite amazed at the three different forms of water falling from the sky all at once. And then on top of that, one side of the house cleared to beautiful blue sky while the other side was dark and threatening and still pouring…hence the stunning photo of the rainbow.
It’s weird how we’re so used to hoping for “good weather” whenever we go on holiday or on an outing, that we sometimes forget to look at what beauty our description of “bad weather” brings. The busy spider who creates the perfect web outside our bedroom window everyday was now covered in icy crystals of dew that shimmered in the weak sunlight. The bare trees and dark stark branches show off the colours of the grass and fields, a bright iridescent green and the fresh cold of the air seems to clear any muzzy or cloudy thought from your brain in one fizzy, icy breath. It’s quite beautiful and very invigorating. You just have to make room for it and allow winter to feed your soul.
Warm meals are perfect and all things fresh and tasty are found at the Saturday morning market. The forests are full of wild winter mushrooms and wine is always around so…plump chicken pieces browned with garlic, fresh carrots and shallots, a splash of white wine, some dried Provencal herbs, wild mushrooms and two market fresh bright red tomatoes coarsely shopped and tossed in with gay abandon and left to simmer. Within minutes the house is filled with a warm country fragrances. All you need is a sprinkling of fresh parsley, a fresh crusty baguette a glass of red wine, a warm fire and you’re immediately wrapped in a blanket of delicious comfort.
I believe a dusting of snow might be on the way…I think another market visit is in order.
A la prochaine