L’automne est arrivé and is making itself felt even here in France. The color is not as dramatic as in New England . . .
. . . where we are usually to be found in October. But there are the occasional flashes of color, like these . . . whatever they are . . . on a tree in le jardin . . .
But mostly, the heat has lost its intensity, the mosquitoes are gone (WOOHOO!) and the days are shorter . . .
We took advantage of a gorgeous afternoon to climb la tour Saint-Nicolas with Courtney. We only had time for one tower, and la tour de la Lanterne has recently closed for renovations and won’t reopen until sometime next year.
Courtney does not love heights, so of course we climbed the tallest of the three. Love all the stairs going every which way. And of course, the view . . .
But perfect weather like we had that day is becoming the exception. The cool and the occasional rain showers make us appreciate les arcades de La Rochelle and, last week, les passages couverts de Paris . . .
We’re choosing to eat à l’interieur instead of à l’exterieur . . .
And of course l’automne makes us feel like curling up with a good book . . .
The changing season signals other changes as well. Tomorrow is our last day in La Rochelle, and that feels strange. We’ll fit in one last lunch at Les 4 Sergents, courtesy of our kind landlords, and I’ll have one last French lesson with my fabulous tutor, Natacha, who has become another good friend.
The past few days have found me wandering in and out of tourist shops, buying a Charente-Maritime calendar and reproductions of watercolors of the towers and the sea, strongly tempted by other touristy knickknacks to which I wouldn’t have given a second glance a month ago. All in an effort to hang onto something precious, I guess. But of course a refrigerator magnet is not an adequate substitute for this place and these friends. So, we don’t know when, but God willing, we will certainly be back.