I have returned from the south of France, refreshed, nourished (literally), and a half a size bigger than when a I left. The trip was just as it should have been: super-relaxing and centered around leisurely 3 hour lunches with lots of wine.
Highlights included a cooking class in Nice, during which we managed to sear duck breasts and fry panisse (while drinking) without burning either ourselves or the food, wandering (full of zabaglione and slightly drunk) through the narrow, winding streets of vertiginous Apricale, Italy, and pretending to be brain-starved zombies while exploring the uber-creepy abandoned WWII Maginot Line bunker in a downpour atop the hill village of Saint Agnes.
We racked up a total of 6 Michelin stars (3 2-star restaurants), two of which rank among the best meals of my life (Chevre d’Or in Eze and Mirazur in Menton). There was also lots of sleeping, hiking rocky paths round rugged, sun-drenched caps jutting into the Mediterranean, exploring castles, and poking (e.g. eating our way) through the offerings in the morning markets of Menton and Nice.
Given all this, it may surprise you (as it certainly surprised me) to learn I also edited over 150 pages of manuscript. Apparently I work best when the sun is out and wine is on regular offer. I think I’ve got about 2 more weeks of work to go and then ABSENT will (FINALLY) be ready to send to readers. So, that’s awesome.
The one thing that did not happen, either while on vacation or in the 24 hours since I’ve been home, was any sort of preparation for my classes this week. Sooooo….I’d better get to that!
Keep the wine chilled for me, I’ll be back soon 🙂