September 11, 2014


While we were in France, we visited several châteaux. Baugé (a town situated in the heart of La Vallée de la Loire) is boxed in on every side by these royal abodes and we could simply hop in the car, point our finger in one direction or the other and wind up in front of a castle. This one, Villandry, was all garden. Shockingly garden. These Frenchies. My dad took us to this château when we were young and while I appreciated the points, lines, angles of the plants, I didn't really take it all in. This time it popped.

(As you probably know, accents are important in French. I wasn't going to include the circumflex in château here but Xavier encouraged me to do so. He said, "Please! Pronounce chateau and then pronounce château! Such a difference" Honestly, I had a good laugh - the difference was inaudible but very real to him).

Colette, as you can see, was very thoughtful about the beauty around her. She sat down and put on a good, sober French face.

A good place for a chat.

Or for tasting some sweet grapes.

A chat between sisters and swans.

This is where the French are truly classy. Their restraint. One might accuse these gardens of bragging. Flamboyances. Exhibitionism. But alas, here - the court intérieure of Villandry is bald, divested of glitter. Just one large urn and those tiles. Contrasts so nicely with the rest.

"Cam I see mama?" (Please do note the little crossed fingers).

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