1. My Gillian window-gazing off the boat to Chateau D'If. 2. The planners of the trip...Jesse and my mom... the rest of us are all much more fly by the seat of our pants experiencers. We are very glad the planners exist, but do not understand them so far as the planning goes. 3. The breathtaking house that my parents were gracious enough to let us crash in with them and my two youngest siblings and our mutual friends, the Sugimotos... it had a plunge pool that the Littles rarely left. Read a bit more about this wandering magical house that clung to the hillside above the vineyards of the Côte du Rhone (not to mention its five separate terraces and the palatial bathrooms) here. 4. Our time there was spent indulging in wonderful cheeses, wines straight from the neighboring vineyards, and lots of cooking together and laughing and stories. 5. Gillian and I baked this rosemary almond torte from foraged rosemary and lavender. It was a distraction for her while Jesse and Giles watched Doctor Who... Gilly said she wasn't scared as long as a grown up was in the room and Monica (her cat far away in Washington) was on her lap... so we made cake. She's delightfully subtle for an eight year old! 6. Sadly, this storm happened while the cake was cooling on the sill (look at that sill, by the way, beautiful!). Jesse took the picture because I was huddled somewhere in the centermost part of the house. Lightning hates me. Anyways, the window blew open and our cake crashed to the stone floor below. We still ate the pieces though-- and it was worth the pottery shards! 7. Every evening we all gathered around this massive table and sat for hours... anyone who knows the Sugimotos will understand why... the stories flowed back and forth and all our sides hurt from laughing. The perfect summer meals.
Thursdays, if you could not tell, will be travel themed for the indefinite future... Jesse and I decided before we got married that we would always travel together, and Chelle and I became fast friends by traveling together for a whole year, so it only seems fitting. As we stand now, our (J and my) summer adventures are not even half recorded, so stay tuned next week for Les Cascades du Saudetet!