Friday, November 8, 2013

Dream collectors




Those of you that have been reading along here for any length of time know that my companion, Remi and I are both inveterate dreamers. We can't help it. It is a glowing ribbon in the bind that links us together. Perhaps because we are both nomads who grew up with a foggy sense of home for varying reasons, one of our favorite dreams is of the "We Could Live Here" variety. We do it all the time. The games people play (kind of like my favorite "What would you choose to eat if you could only have three ingredients?" Avocado, chickpeas and roasted chicken is today's answer)...


And so I didn't bat an eye when Remi got that far-away look after finishing off a recent picnic in a vineyard on the outskirts of Uzes.


I followed his gaze to the ruin in front of us and knew what he was thinking before he said a word.


I watched him dreaming with all of the internal fervor as our puppers do when they run in their sleep.


Yes, we could open up that doorway. What is it? Renaissance period? Possibly.


And then that rather large window too, big enough to make a doorway, perhaps a little balcony could be added, a beacon over a sea of vines.


Of course, the roof would need to be redone...always a pricy affair...


Tick, tock, tick until his imaginings pulled him up from our comfortable perch in the shade and drew him like a magnet to make a closer inspection.


The dogs followed. Nosing the ground as they padded along behind.


I stayed where I was for the longest time. Watching Remi stroll with a glass of wine in hand.


King of his imaginary domain.


Until I too was bewitched enough to wander.


Delight swelled, blurred my vision, then stilled it.


The surprise of happiness.


It might never be where you expect it but a little dreaming is fine fire to the flame. 


Isn't it?


Wishing that your weekend ahead is filled with good.

And speaking of, to read Laurie Anderson's moving and very beautiful tribute to her late Husband, Lou Reed, please click here.

61 comments:

  1. I disagree re chickpeas but adore your Arles version of dream catching!

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    1. Maybe if you tried "my" (actually Smitten Kitchen's) cumin roasted chickpeas it could change your mind?

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  2. Oooh - I like the grapes and the katydid and the mystery! In the past I haven't let myself dream too much - I think I had no idea where my life was going so I just stayed put (not always too happily). Still not a big dreamer but so happy now there's not as much of a need! But how can you and Remi not play that game all the time?? I would do it, too, with soooo many tantalizing subjects to ponder! I do dream of a visit from my sister...

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    1. Me too... :( Or me visiting my Sister. I keep seeing articles about Thanksgiving and *sniff sniff*...And I love what you say about being happy and so having what you need. Yay Sister!!

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  3. Lovely photos and post
    I feel that's a balcony doorway.
    Funny, I look at real estate listings to relax.
    Ben looks boyish, like he's just had a hair cut, and has been working out.
    His smile is precious.

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    1. Ben was being SO silly that day. He came trotting over with a big cluster of grapes hanging out the side of his mouth at one point and I laughed so hard that I couldn't take the photo! He got a kick out of that. I took this one after he had a big roll in the dust. :)

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  4. Well, someone's about to lay an enormous mass of eggs. Praying mantises are the only insects that genuinely make me nervous; they're like owls in that, when you encounter one, it seems to be intently WATCHING YOU. I've always assumed that both species are (ahd this goes for a large number of cats) simply assessing your size and eatability.

    A friend of mine brought over a large, dried (looks mummified) mantis egg casing one day last fall. She'd found it in her garden and, wanting to know what this THING was, broke off the twig to which it was glued. I told her what it was, assured that mantises (sp?) were good for the garden...and off she went, back home....where she apparently set it on a kitchen shelf....and forgot about it.

    I got the hysterical, screamy/weepy telephone call a few days later when she came home from work to find about a thousand, beady-eyed baby mantises crawling all over her kitchen. Nature-Boy that I am, I advised her to merely leave them alone.....they're rather famous for eating each other when there's nothing else around. Everntually, there'd be only one large, well-fed one left in her house.

    I think she opted for another, more immediate solution.

    ----david terry (am I the only person whose webmistress knitted a 14"-long, startlingly lifelike praying mantis for his Christmas present last year?)
    www.davidterryart.com

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    1. Um, let me think about that for a second David...You know, I think it is safe to say that you ARE the only person whose websmistress knitted you a giant praying mantis for Christmas.

      And I can't even begin to respond to the rest of your finely tuned comment because it gave me the heebie jeebies!! *shudder*

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    2. Hey Miss Heather?.....I just emailed you a photographof the damned thing. you can post it if you like. It IS, after all, a very good (if knitted) replia of a praying mantis. My only problem is that all the terriers here keep trying to get at it.....
      Thus far, I've kept it away from them by keeping on top of a three foot tall cactus in the back kitchen.

      ---Uncle David

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  5. Balcony.........YES!A Juliet window!
    Fix the roof...........a good idea.First things first!
    That front door.................ahh,yes..........keep DREAMING!You know I believe in DREAMS!
    XOXO

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    1. And I know that you have the moxi to make them come true!!!

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  6. We, too, are dreamers. . .forever finding 'our' perfect place on our travels. . .we've 'owned' tiny cabins in the Pacific Northwest wilderness and crumbling stone mansions on windy coastal lands, sometimes we've stretched ourselves and renovated unloved small hotels and other times found just the perfect live-above store front in some European village. Yes, Heather, as long as we have the ability to dream our world's will never grow old. . .nor, hopefully, will we!

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    1. Yes! Oh of course you both are the same!!! It is a big part of what makes traveling so amazing, isn't it? And yes also to the "unloved" hotels--absolutely!!!! I go so far to redo the interiors for those. :)
      Fingers crossed for staying young at heart...

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  7. So lovely, Heather. Glad that happiness crept up on you in that beautiful moment. Dreams and imagination provide a wonder of riches, right? Keep dreaming, dear. XOXO
    PS- My dreams right now are taking me to Paris in for a week in late January all by my little old self - Mr. H. has his annual ski trip, so why not spend my bachelorette week in a Paris apartment instead of at home? It's a lovely dream...

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    1. Wooo???? Really??? TGV is only 2 1/2 hours away if you need sunshine. And if there is any way I can afford it, I would love to come up and see you for girly time in Le Bon Marché! :)
      PS. Something tells me that you are going to end up having at least a pied à terre in Paris someday...

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  8. I hope I'm never too old or too jaded to dream like this. The building you show is rife with possibility. The photos of the grapes - utterly magical. Dream on.

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    1. I could truly eat it every day. Am mighty curious what your three ingredients would be...

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  11. This is a dream of a post. (sorry, couldn't stop myself). And those grapes! I could almost smell them. We often smell them before we see them here in Concord when bicycling or on foot. Concord grapes, you know.

    Only David would have a giant knitted preying mantis. I first learned about them when we moved to this house and my 10-year-old son ordered some to put in the garden he was planting. Later, he kept bees. Anyway, I find them beautiful though I would also be stunned to wake up one morning to a whole kitchen-full. So thank you, David Terry, for a Friday morning laugh!

    Dreaming is so important for all of us. It has always gotten me through the toughest times. We all need that mental vacation.

    And yes, I read and loved Laurie Anderson's tribute to Lou -- they had an amazing life together.

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    1. Wasn't that amazing, Judith? How beautiful to have such faith as well.
      And oh man, you are stronger than I that David's story made you laugh!!! I just shivers me timbers...
      Have a lovely weekend...

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    2. Yes, well perhaps it shivered my timbers on a subconscious level. I'd gone back in to correct the many embarrassing typos in my comment only to leave the major spelling error: it's praying mantis, not preying mantis -- I blame David.

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    3. Yes, by all means do blame David!

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  12. A beautiful post, and, I totally agree with your food choice! Deb Perelman is the best. And the mantis is really gorgeous!

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    1. Jo-Anne, I don't know if you saw my post a bit back called "Food E"? Deb Perelman has totally changed the way I cook. Simple but (hopefully) gooooood.

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  13. I dream similar dreams too. I see old abandoned houses and I just want to right all their wrongs and make them beautiful again. Houses are a bit like people - they need memories to help them come alive.

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    1. Oh my gosh Loree, that is so beautiful! I think you will like some of my posts next week. And I bet there are many houses to dream over on Malte...

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  14. Okay, Judith & Heather?.....not to entirely hijack the thread, but?.....an even better story. Another friend of mine ordered The Big Box of ladybugs. They come in packs of 1,000 ladybugs (does anyone actually count them, I wonder?). They're basically frozen when they arrive (ladybugs pass the winter semi-hibernating in bark crevices, etcetera). My friend, who'd decided that year to GO ORGANIC (!), was terribly excited when her box arrived, so she opened it, set it on the dining room table to see her new, frozen friends, and then went out to dinner and the movies. She returned five or so hours later to find.....you guessed it.....1,000 newly-thawed, quite conscious, and very hungry ladybugs (these things are full-grown when they're shipped) crawling e-v-e-r-y-w-h-e-r-e in her house. These things are fast movers (and, apparently, fast thawers, also). She telephoned me in a panic, wanting to know WHAT TO DO. Genius-Me told her to open all the windows and doors. It hadn't occurred to her thatthe bugs would rather be outside, eating aphids, than inside, crawling all over the curtains and furniture. The idea worked, by the way.
    ----david terry

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    1. I picture a room that is positively moving with ladybugs!!! Holy canoli it must have taken awhile for them to move out into the wild blue yonder. Definitely easier to deal with than squiggly mantis babies but still...!!!

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    2. We seem to get an influx of them inside the house every spring -- not so bad. But David, please, no snake stories. And I know you have a few.

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    4. Well, then, Judith.....I won't tell you about the time a friend of mine (she lives out in the country and had left the bathroom skylight open) stepped (naked, mais bien sur) into her bathtub to find that a six foot long black snake was in there with her markedly vulnerable self. Much destruction of doors, shower-curtains, etcetera ensued....but I won't mention the story, will I?. Nor will I tell you about the time "The Snake House" (this made national news; I was teaching up in Philadelphia that summer) burnt down....across the street from my old house in Durham. A Taiwanese medical student had about 100 illegal exotic and venomous snakes in cages there. In his prissy panic (the fire woke him up in the middle of the night, during a heat-wave), he threw all the cages out onto the front and back lawns. The fireman arrived to find cobras and rattlesnakes and black mambas and god-knows-what-else spitting and snarling and biting all over the place. I'm not make a WORD of this up......but neither will I mention a word of it, since you've asked me not to do so. Presumably, you can google something like "Durham Fire Snakes" and get all the details you want. I ended up simply staying away (with my terriers) from our very old and bushy neighborhood until the temperature finallly dipped below 55 degrees.....but I won't mention that, will I?

      Compliantly yours as ever,

      Uncle David

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    5. Hi David, My little pup, Karina, literally trembles with effort when she is asked to contain herself and not do whatever it is she so very much wants to do, so I understand how difficult it must have been to not tell me your snake stories. Thanks ever so much for your amazing restraint.

      Yours truly,
      Judith in Concord, Mass where thankfully there are only garter snakes running around loose.

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  15. Heather... these photos are gorgeous... the light....
    And thank you for the link to Lou Reed's tribute... I had goose bumps reading the last few paragraphs... Let's hope we can all have such deep and sustaining relationships with our loved ones... Have a happy weekend... xv

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    1. Thank you Vicki, you too! And yes, that article, her perspective, gave me much to think about.

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  16. I love you telling about your daydreaming and I am so happy for you he is dreamer, too. You are so lucky!

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    1. I am. :) Although with BOTH of us being dreamers, things can get out of hand!

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  17. What would our daily lives be like without a day dream or two. Keep on dreaming with your lovely Remi.
    Loved your beautiful photos & and next time your emptying your fridge & eating avocado, chickpeas & roasted chicken can I come & join you ? those would be my three ingredients for my fab. meal.

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    1. Absolutely! :) I am slightly chickpea obsessed as of late. That and roasted everything.

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  18. Thank you for reminding me to dream...sometimes I get far too rooted in everyday reality. Too much keeping my head down and plowing forward to get the work done becomes an unfortunate habit! The dreams you share with us, and the ways you share them, are so extraordinary and so lovely! Now to go find my roasted chicken, avocado and pomegranate seeds... Imaginatively and gratefully, Leslie in Portland, Oregon


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    1. Thank you Leslie! And oh now I want a pomegranate!!! If only they weren't so much work...sigh.
      Bon Weekend!!!

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  19. Oooh, that's really seductive...as long as it stays a dream. But what would be our world without it? Who is stealing our dreams gives us the death. (Konfuzius)

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    1. That is such a wonderful quote, Mumbai. Thank you so much for sharing it!

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  20. Ah yes, dreaming keeps us young at heart... and it doesn't cost a cent.

    Happy weekend!

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    1. Perfectly said, Susan. Plus it has to be good for the tinker, no?
      Happy Weekend to you too!

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  21. I quite understand Ben and the grapes; those bunches look like they are waiting for a mouth to grab them; very seductive grapes :) Your picnic looks yum too.

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    1. Oh it was tasty. Very basic--ham, baguette, cheese, wine! And aren't those grapes crazily luscious???

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  22. Wouldn't life be boring if we didn't dream every now and then? All the better if the dreams include something enchanting like a beautiful old ruined house or a soft purring cat!

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    1. I am still longing to see your "Ghost House"!!!! Now THAT is an amazing story...

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    2. I think I may post about that...

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  23. Simply beautiful, dear Heather! I miss my drives through the vineyards this year, weather is just awful, grey and rainy since weeks......! So, your post is very uplifting on a grey Sunday. Please, please send a bit of your blue sky and some sun rays up to the Périgord!
    Bisou - karin

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  24. Thanks for this beautiful post. Your photos are amazing. I looove chick peas, so I'm all over that. And the grapes? Sigh...

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  25. Thanks for this beautiful post. Your photos are amazing. I looove chick peas, so I'm all over that. And the grapes? Sigh...

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  26. Dreaming is one least explored area of creativity.
    Half opened windows invite curiosity, eyes have their own stories.
    Vineyards of infinity and first love.
    Heather,are you and Remi really walking a dream?

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    1. Oh Edgar, I am just getting back to this now that we have returned and must say that...our lives are full of plenty of very real struggles. But the loveliest moments? We try to appreciate them for what they are.

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  27. You had me dreaming right along with you x

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  28. So beautiful Heather and if reminds me of a special dream you once shared with me...wondering if it is still flickering around in dreamland? xx

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  29. We also build imaginary houses: converted shipping containers are the latest delight :-)

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    1. Ooooh--good one! I will have to add that to my dreaming repetoire. Merci, Lisa!!

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