Lately, I've been thinking a lot about what it means to build a new life. Like this beautiful stone wall, which pieces of my life will fit together in France like these stones? which pieces will need to be discarded or re-shaped in the future? what's going to hold it all together? and will it be functional as well as beautiful like this wall?
When I return to France the end of September, my life will be quite unlike it's ever been. I will not be on vacation. I will not be house-sitting for friends. I will not be an observer of French life; I will be living it. I love that I am able to give some conscious thought to just how I want this life to be. I don't want to totally detach myself from what life's been like for the last 60+ years, yet I want to arrive in France with a slate clean enough to create something that's uniquely 'me in France.'
Six boxes of 'me' have already arrived in Cadrieu. I've sent some clothes, some art, some CDs and some books. With digital technology, I have access to photos of family and friends and to my favorite music. I've shipped my grandmother's silver to Cadrieu, knowing that entertaining will be a part of my new life. It has place settings for 12 people, and I anticipate using every piece! I've sent a few of my favorite cookbooks, because even though learning to cook French is part of my plan, I'll still want to make my favorite American dishes. I know Laury giggled when she opened the box I shipped that contained both my English and French dictionaires. Why send those, you ask? Because they both would be very difficult and very expensive to replace in France, as would the vitamins and calcium tablets I tucked into another box. I included my santon collection in a box along with a burlap and yarn Christmas 'decoration' that Travis made in the 6th grade. And I absolutely could not leave my down bed pillows behind! I'll bet Laury giggled over those as well.
If you were going to build a new life somewhere, what would you take along?
This little piece of Red Bell Farm will also be part of my new 'me in France' life.