Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Celebrity sightings in Provence

Well, now that got your attention, didn't it?

Mm-hmm, I see. Kids, don't forget that I come from the press where we know how to toss out a line all the better to real 'em in. 

And while I am on the subject of the press...I know that some of you already follow Remi on instagram  but for those of you who don't, he is wrapping up a gorgeous storytelling on one of my favorite places that we ever covered together, the Ngorongoro Crater in Tanzania, as a month-long tribute to honor Cecil the Lion and all that he represented. If you are interested, you will find him @remibenali. Bravo, coeur, for all that you are doing and for taking it to 31,000 followers around the world everyday.

Where were we? Ah, yes, celebrity sightings. What, getting a bit impatient are you?

Yes, the bright lights do tend to love the bright light of Provence and my beloved Arles especially is having a "moment" this summer.

So now, who exactly was the famous person that was spotted beyond the crowd in Arles today?

Well, I hate to let you down but it would turn out to be...


Or at least that is certainly how I felt, fluttery and full with recognition. My doctor (whose family has been doctors for generations, including one of Mr. Van Gogh's main doctors but don't let that diminish their reputation) is mere steps from our last apartment near the Place du Forum. As I am redhead loyal, I still go to her even though there is a doc even in our tiny village. I was quite a bit early and so thought that I would poke around the old neighborhood, for I needed a dose of its buzzy energy. Happily, my copine, the very talented Christine Millerin had already opened up her atelier and invited me to have a tea across the street at the Cuisine de Comptoir where the handsome owners, Alex and Vincent, both gave me "les bis" the South's quick triple cheek kiss. While we perched on the tiny terrace in view of her shop in case she had customers (a very, very Provençal thing to do), I was given the same treatment by the lovely Sophie Lassange who has her workshop next door and even a big hug (highly unusual for France) by Sylvie who was our post-lady for ten years that we lived in Arles (we used to joke that we could only rent in her postal zone).

It felt rather wonderful. And while there are kind folks that do regularly say hello to me in the village - and of course, there are those, as we know, who do not *cough* - I do miss being a part of that neighborhood and its everyday pleasantries that are enough to make even a dull day feel special and a shy person like me, a star.

Oh, all right, I won't just leave you with false hopes, that wouldn't be right. So who have I seen? Sarah Jessica Parker in St. Remy (mirrored aviators, flowing sundress) and Ines de la Fressange in Arles (dressed ex-act-ly like she proposes in her great book). Et pour mes lecteurs français, je peut ajouter Edouard Baer qui a une maison à Arles et il y a quelque mois, Remi a vu Mika sur la Place du Forum - mon dieu! Dommage que je n'était pas las...Of course, after many years of living in Manhattan I am Pavlovian trained to pay no attention to such things. No, instead you will find me face up to the big blue, staring at the sun...

A final Pop of Summer...

...et bienvenue septembre! 


  1. Yes, I so welcome September, a new month, a fresh start.

  2. Did you think that a beautiful redhead such as yourself could just slip away from Arles unnoticed?? Or slip back IN unnoticed?? Silly sister! Of course they miss not only your beauty but your vivacious-ness, your joie de vivre! Methinks Arles is a duller place without you! (although you wouldn't know it from your crisp, fresh-take photos! And, yes, Remi's Instagram posts are wonderful, too - so nice of you to give him a shout out! Very jealous of 2 people who are about to see you both in person very soon! : (

    1. Stowaway! Stowaway! Thank you for all of your wonderful loveliness Sister. Methinks you are a wee bit biased.

  3. I could sit in picture 2 .. with 1 good friend .. et boum boum boum !

    Merci, Heather, for the place and the song



  4. Oh Heather, you are a tease! I love it! I would be more interested to see Ines de la Fressange than SJP, although admittedly there would be the guess-who-I-just-saw moment!
    You must be looking forward to catching up with your mum soon!
    Deb C, Melbourne, Aust

  5. I think I'm going to have to find a copy of Mika 'Boum, boum, boum!" :) Loved your photos as always and so glad I've had a chance to visit Arles a couple of times, and have been able to relate to some of the locations you mention via your posts and pics - they always take me right there! So nice for your friends to make you so welcomed, back into this wonderful town! You are a star!

    1. Thank you Judi... :) And I am not a big one for pop music but I loved this album! Enjoy!!

  6. Sounds like you had a very enjoyable day catching up with old friends and lovely Arles. That sky looks amazing, could look at it forever. xx

  7. A wonderful feeling, they cherish and remember you in all seasons: "triple cheek kiss” and a "a big hug”. It’s September. “Its everyday pleasantries that are enough to make even a dull day feel special and a shy person like me, a star” and lasting and life sustaining.

    I love the photos.

    How gorgeous they recognize YOU and give you a HUG!
    I do FOLLOW THAT REMI on INSTAGRAM..........and where have you been lately?
    I know you are building up excitement for some special visitors this month and I am JUST AS EXCITED AS YOU ARE!PLease give us some PHOTOS from the VISIT!

  9. I agree with Elizabeth. You are a star! But hey, SJP and Ines? Cool.


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