June 13, 2010

Circle of Missé!

It's amazing how things develop within a story or within a trip. We came to France with a goal to explore the western region of France, see many châteaux, and hopefully discover a few surprises along the way.

Circle of Missé was a surprise!

We didn't know about this place before coming to France. It's not just a retreat and it's not just a school. It's both and more. It's a creative holiday where people come to express themselves as writers, chefs or artists. Karl and I delightfully accepted a last minute invitation to participate in the Writer's Boot Camp. We thought it might be a parantheses within our travels.

Who knew that two Canadians from the Pacific Coast would travel to France to take an English writing course given by an American and a Brit - on French soil! Wayne, the resident writer and host, invites various published authors to give seminars and workshops, and we lucked out by having Annie Kirby.
She's an accomplished author who managed to pack a whole lot of information in 6 days, in her gentle and encouraging way.


The class is never larger than six students and they arrive with all levels of writing experience.

Alison and Andrew, looking very absorbed.

Here we are at "Le Petit Médard", enjoying dinner with some from the cast of characters: Wayne, Karl, Andrew, Marguerite, Karen, Annie, Aaron.

Writing was intense and challenging, but there was ALWAYS time to eat. It was what came between the dashes - the aside from our writing - that was in some way connected with the main course.

Meet Échalote, the English Springer Spaniel. She greeted us enthusiastically every morning and could sniff food from afar. She had us pegged in no time and knew who she could entice to give her a tidbit. (There's obviously more to this story...)

Alison, Karen, Annie, Andrew

Writing ideas come ever so easily when we can munch on homemade pizza. Aaron, Chef and Cooking instructor, spent all his days catering to us. He was in the garden picking herbs, off to the market to buy fresh produce, then back in the kitchen cooking up a storm. (Was it my imagination or did his choice of music indicate whether we could look forward to a slow-simmering soup or lots of chopped veggies...) Our writing course participation turned into a two-for-one deal since we were there to write but also benefited from Aaron's culinary talents.

Aaron holding Échalote, Karl, Wayne, Alison, Andrew's profile.

Helen, Alison, Annie.
We're on our final evening and we're about to read our "masterpieces", so a bit of champagne is in order.

We each took turns, a semi-colon pause between each reader, providing a pleasant feeling of expectancy.

The "lounge" where we did our readings.

If this story could be told through punctuation, the Circle of Missé would be an exclamation mark!

Here's a link to Circle of Missé.

Check it out. Tell your friends. Spread the word!

No comments:

Post a Comment