Gratitude

 View from the top of the vineyard at Clos de Caveau.

View from the top of the vineyard at Clos de Caveau.

Here I am at the end of another journey; time to go back to Canada, put my head down and get back to work and a “normal” life.

This last while has been filled with so many wonderful experiences, I thought it important to take time to cherish and be grateful for them. Very grateful. With Thanksgiving just passed, it’s a good time to remind ourselves to appreciate all the amazing and beautiful things we have.

I feel truly blessed with the people I have in my life, and the last week and a half on this side of the ocean has reinforced this feeling. Not only did I have fabulous visitors come to me, I had many opportunities to spend time with friends who live on this continent and even met new friends I hope to keep for a lifetime.

I had the pleasure of meeting my dear friend Tara this past weekend in Stockholm, Sweden. I had never thought about going to that part of the globe, but after spending most of the summer in the charming company of my new friend Tove—she was working a stage at the winery and is from Sweden—I really wanted to see her homeland. And Tara and I found ourselves extremely delighted we did. What a beautiful city, full of unique architecture, history, water, boats, great food and a lively culture. But the icing on the cake was having family Sunday dinner with Tove’s parents and sisters. It was shocking to me that virtual strangers would open their home to us, make homemade gravlax and share their time and company with us while Tove was still in Provence. It was the highlight of the trip. Now I am back in Paris, where my friend Didi is currently on a work assignment, so we’ve had the good fortune of being able to squeeze in a few visits over dinner and lunch.

As I reflect at the end of another season in Provence, I marvel at the life I am lucky enough to have created here. While I adore all the markets, bike riding and endless beauty of Provence, I truly know that sharing all of it with profoundly special people makes it all the more rich. Feeling part of something larger, part of a community deepens the experience. It’s wonderful to travel to new places, but often it’s somewhat of a superficial experience. Once you have roots, things change. And my roots run deep in this magical place, growing each and every year.

So thank you again Provence for providing such a soul-filling summer. And to all my friends who have shared their time with me from both sides of the ocean, I love you and thank you for being part of my life. I will miss you all and ma belle Provence, until next year…

 Summer of the selfies (top to bottom, left to right): Natalie, Jason & I in Marseille; Didi, Hugh, Jay and I in the Alps; Jay and I having a post-ride beer; Tove & me at Clos de Caveau; dinner in Stockholm with Tove's family, Tara and I in Stockholm, Jay at the top of Ventoux on his second ascent of the day; Zara harvesting in Le Barroux.

Summer of the selfies (top to bottom, left to right): Natalie, Jason & I in Marseille; Didi, Hugh, Jay and I in the Alps; Jay and I having a post-ride beer; Tove & me at Clos de Caveau; dinner in Stockholm with Tove's family, Tara and I in Stockholm, Jay at the top of Ventoux on his second ascent of the day; Zara harvesting in Le Barroux.