May 6, 2010

Chez-Nous - May 1 - 5

We arrived at our "Home away from home" on rue de la Trémoille just in time to meet our charming hostess before her departure back to Canada.  Friends were waiting to whisk her away to the gare (the train station), but we did have time for a quick visit around the house and explanations on how various things worked.

Allow me to gush.  The place is absolutely amazing, and exactly what I've always imagined a French country home to be.  We are not talking about a château here, nor are we in a rustic country cabanon.  I would describe it as refined country, very comfortable, decorated with taste and artistry, boasting all the modern conveniences without masking the old charm.  It's perfect!

There is no doubting that our hostess is an artist when you look at a hutch with a fern growing out of a soup tureen next to a tray holding a carafe and two wine glasses, or when you look at the kitchen table with a checkered red and white tablecloth, herbs and flowers in a small vase, a local art piece of a ceramic chicken, and a small bowl of fresh almonds.  No matter where your eye rests, there are these beautiful little settings which do not look posed in the least, just inviting. 

The bedroom we are using, one of four, is at the back of the house overlooking the courtyard.  I especially love the bedding with the square pillows, the duvet, the boutis at the foot of the bed.  (Those of you who followed last year's blog will remember how we toured and were impressed with the boutis museum.)  Again more artistic settings with pot-pourri, candles, books on flea market finds, little plants and huge mirrors.  I feel surrounded by soft and comfortable "luxe".

The bathroom is immense by any standard.  It, too, has feasts for the senses.  Shelves with big soft towels, toilet paper rolls in a basket,  special creams from Marseille, an attic ladder to hold matching towels, and a mirror imbedded in an old window frame perched above the sink.

The tub is so long that my toes can barely touch the end when I lie down. 

There are books everywhere and the reading choices are uncannily similar to mine.  I would say that I have read 90% of the titles and have already begun to enjoy the last 10%.  One type of book that I have neglected to appreciate are books on and about art.  These can be found in softcover, hardcover and in magazines in this home.  I will delight in educating myself a bit more on this vast subject.

When we left BC, our two lilac trees were just beginning to bloom, and when we arrived here there were lilacs waiting for us on the living room coffee table, welcoming us home.

Oh yes, this house will be more than fine for our two months in Thouars; it will be a joy!

~ AM

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