Yesterday we spent one of those glorious afternoons having brunch in the sun that is the the stuff of dreams: Good friends, lovely food, beautifully-behaved children and weather that we’d been pining for all these long, chilly months. It was golden, shining perfection. And with the 13-bedroom mansion and expertly tended grounds that our friends are caretakers for as a backdrop, the whole scene was straight out of a Slim Aarons photograph.
Our brunch started with Champagne and featured quiche, fougasse (flat bread with either chevre or ham), fruit salad, coffee cake, banana bread and my sister’s sort-of-secret recipe for “party potatoes.” We also enjoyed some Obama blend coffee that Liz had been sent from the States. It tasted like hope and change. Delicious.
After lunch, Wil somehow found the energy to play with the kids on the trampoline and was rewarded for his fortitude by all three children ganging up on him and bouncing the poor man senseless. Undaunted, he next piled them into the rowboat and took them for a little tour of the pond (though I noticed that he made them do all the rowing). I’m not sure who had more fun, those on the island throwing the plastic duck decoys for the dog to retrieve, or the dog himself. Or maybe it was the rest of us laughing hysterically and taking pictures on the shore.
The fun continuted: Our hostess loaded her two boys, Hugo and Emerson, and her two houseguests, Wil and Liz, into their classic Deux Chevaux and drove the gang down the road to inspect Patrick’s beehives (in addition to caretaking, Patrick makes the sweetest honey in Provence). Johann and Patrick went tromping through the woods up past the tennis court in search of wild olive trees, while little Celeste and I took a walk in the woods ourselves, with my tiny tour guide showing me her favorite places, including the tree she likes to sit in because she feels like she’s in the palm of its hand.
Please check out the rest of the pictures of this perfect day that is the reason we all love living here. They’re at right under “Photos.”