Friday, January 30, 2015

To share and share alike




Remi and I have been known to read each others thoughts.

It just happens and when it does, we will invariably make the same comment, "You aren't allowed to do that! Get out of my head!" And then we laugh. It is an old joke between us but it never does, actually, get old.


So I knew before he spoke that he wasn't willing to just go the grocery store as planned for our last run before New Year's Eve but had something else in mind. "Why don't we go get some good olive oil to use for cooking the lamb?" he queried. I was already nodding before he finished his question and so we took a different direction at the upcoming roundabout and headed towards the Alpilles.


Nearly 80% of this years olive crop was struck down not only here but throughout Italy and Spain as well. Remi was planning ahead. He knew that the good stuff - which we buy regularly at the Moulin de Jean-Cornille in Maussane - wouldn't last through the winter and he was more than right. There was hardly any left.


We bought three one liter bottles but still were disappointed. The energy in the boutique had been bizarre with other customers clamoring for the oil. I didn't want our brief foray in the Alpilles to end on such a sour note. Not that afternoon, not ever.


"Why don't we go and pick some fresh thyme for the lamb as well?" I suggested.


Despite what one might think, les Alpilles do not unceremoniously sprout les Herbs de Provence - rosemary, thyme and sage - partout. Not entirely. Luckily, we have our spot. A tried and true destination...


...amidst olive groves and running vines, parasol pines and stone chopped hills. But would it be there?


We arrived just in time...

...for the most beautiful sunset of the year. As if it knew that it had to take one grand swoop of a bow before time had run out.


And the thyme? No, it had not run out. 

It was Remi who insisted that I take this photo of his victoriously brandishing our récolte or harvest, one that would, indeed perfume l'agneau marvelously along with such exceptional huile d'olive.

He did so because he knew that I was already thinking of you at this beginning of the end. Because just as Remi and I can read each others thoughts, so, oftentimes, you, that royal You, can also pop up inside my head. With a moment so beautiful that it shimmies up next to the sublime, of course, my only recourse was to share and share alike.





Have a wonderful weekend...



41 comments:

Karena Albert said...

So beautiful Heather, the thoughts the images, I love that you and Remi are so close.

xoxo
Karena
French Artist Frederique Chemin

Bill Facker said...

"In a nutshell" you have described one of the many reasons I love France .. food preparation as an exciting Family event. Think good thoughts for me, please, as I get in the car and drive to Costco ...... yes, even on beautiful Kauai ... sigh ...

Aloha,
Bill Facker

www.kauai-to-paris.com

California Girl said...

Lovely. You make it all so appealing. I miss my herb garden during our harsh northeast winters.

California Girl said...

Lovely. You make it all so appealing. I miss my herb garden during our harsh northeast winters.

Stephen Andrew said...

I hope you realize that your writing is my equivalent of 50 shades of grey. Are you kidding?!!! Jaunts to get olive oil and picking thyme in the golden hour of sunset?! What could be more romantic or perfect than this? These photographs are stunning. The pink highlights against the trees! Oh my. What a gorgeous world you share with us!
I so wish we had connected when you lived only minutes from me!
Thank you so much for your comment today. I am very insecure in my writing and worry constantly that it doesn't translate to anyone else.

George Snyder said...

Every time I think, okay, Most Romantic Post Ever, you outdo yourself. I live vicariously through your posts, dear Heather, and remember my ever so brief visit, so that in my fantasy I can sprinkle bits and pieces of real memory. Much love to you and Remi for the weekend, and always, G

La Contessa said...

OLIVE OIL SHORTAGE............OH NO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Thanks for being my newspaper as well..................
The photos are sublime.......the colors, the shots.......all truly gorgeous!
I hope the lamb was a success...........and NOW I SEE THAT'S REMI's ARM!!!!
XOXo

Jackie and Joel Smith said...

The olive crop is alive and well to your south in Greece and having had the opportunity to watch (and taste!) some of the olives become oil, I can assure you there will be olive oil in the coming year. (Luckily their crops were spared the attack by the fly that struck in Italy and Spain). This is a lovely outing you took and what a beautiful way to close out one year and ease into the next.

Judy Castaillac said...

I hope we will have some oil next year. Not one drop this year and we have 700 olive trees. Mas de la Barre had some oil as did Moulin de Bedarrides. (http://www.moulinbedarrides.com)
Judy

Heather Robinson said...

Via email:
"No one but you and Rémi live such beautiful moments, and no one shares them better! This post is another example of why I never can delete your posts. Thank you, Leslie in Oregon"

Barbara Lilian said...

Always love reading your posts and seeing your wonderful photos, capturing all the things of why I love living in France. The importance of how a meal is prepared & cooked. Collecting your Thyme took me back to when I picked my first thyme, which was growing high up in the mountainous Provence area along side of the road, the perfume was overwhelming. I'll be searching frantically now on websites to find good Olive oil. or better still making a trip down south .Hmm ! that sounds like a good idea. Thank you Heather, you have brightened my morning as the sky is grey. Enjoy your weekend.

robin said...

See how you taunt us with your romance? While the rest of us go to Costco (or Meijer - eek!!) for our herbs and veggies, you and your lover romp over the Provencal countryside during sunset. Le sigh! I like not only the beautiful, beautiful orange-y photos, but also the idea of long term couples reading each other's minds! Also love the victorious bunch-of-thyme shot - suc-CESS!!! Thanks for sharing with us; we are so grateful!

Mumbai said...

a search for ingredients in the nature is the most exhilarating preparation for a great meal aside from eating it and when it happens in such beautiful surrounding ,with the most beautiful sunset, what else can make you more happy.
Mind reading ...so intimate and it works more often with my husband the longer we are together too.

Emilia Tremante said...

The same problem here in Italy. We were very sad! Let's hope in a better future!
Love your stories and pictures Heather.
I hope you enjoyed your meal!
Have a Wonderful weekend my dear!
Bisous

Silke Bauer said...

Wonderful sunset, wonderful story, and images! So important you haven't let your feelings for the Alpilles gotten spoiled. You kept them in a fine way! I hold myself sweet memories from that one day in les Alpilles. There is a certain magic in the air there. And the rocks are definitely an impressive setting.
What happened to the olive crops? Was is the weather?
Thank you for feeding us with another beautiful story! I actually think I start to live of them. (;

silkannthreades said...

A glorious triumphal expedition. I'd go 'shopping' with you any day. :)

Marsha Splenderosa said...

Oh, Heather, how beautiful !!!!!

I Dream Of said...

What a beautiful story, Heather. What a lovely way to wrap up the year - and thanks to you and Remi for thinking about the Royal You while on your adventure. Hope that this year is filled with many more moments of beauty. I feel so lucky that we get to share them with you! XOXO

simpleimages2 said...

Love and thoughts you share together are almost sacred treasures. You go out and take a walk in splendid colors of the day and picking gifts from nature’s bounty “…a moment so beautiful that it shimmies up next to the sublime..” What else can one ask for.
Thank you Heather.

Heather Robinson said...

Merci Karena.

Heather Robinson said...

Costco! Really? I have to say that you surprised me with that one, Bill. But maybe they have a good wine selection there?

Heather Robinson said...

The rosemary and thyme are tenacious, we are lucky to have something that resists the Mistral winds! Stay warm...

Heather Robinson said...

Oh I think that your writing is as clear as a bell. It is if you are talking to me/us! I only wish that you wrote more often but I do realize that you have a business to run.

And of course your response made me smile hugely. It WAS a really lovely, happy moment. The sky...one of our favorite corners of the Alpilles...all to ourselves. I do pinch myself at times and don't ever take those good times for granted!

Heather Robinson said...

Thank you so much, friend. How I wish that you could come to visit more often but you know that already. I have so much more to show you here...and we barely got to talk! Well, by my standards. :)
Merci aussi pour la jolie compliment...

Heather Robinson said...

The lamb was sensational. It is one of my very favorite dishes that he makes...and that is saying something!!

Heather Robinson said...

Aha! So maybe I will have to visit you in Greece for an "olive oil run"! ;)

Heather Robinson said...

I am so sorry to hear that your entire crop was lost, Judy.

Heather Robinson said...

Merci Barbara Lilian. And it seems like we are out of the really good stuff even here! But there is still, happily, much thyme to be gathered and yes, the perfume in the car on the way back was out of this world...

Heather Robinson said...

Heehee, thanks for the compliments and the Steve Martin reference, Sister!! And I find it funny that a few people have used the word "romantic" and that wasn't in my mind at all...just that it was beautiful. So, that is something for me to think about!
Stay warm and safe in the snow, Sister. <3

Heather Robinson said...

It is a funny thing when that happens, isn't it? We always laugh because it is still so surprising even after all of these years.

Heather Robinson said...

Emilia, we ate like...Romans! And actually the idea for the lamb was inspired by a Roman recipe...the lamb is braised in honey and lavender...plus the thyme and olive oil as well. Delicious!

Heather Robinson said...

What a lovely thing to say! And I am soooo happy that you had that good day in the Alpilles and understood its magic...
Bisous!

Heather Robinson said...

And you would be most welcome. ;) Save that Ben would follow you around hopelessly if he were with us.

Heather Robinson said...

Marsha, we only had our iphones with us. I used Remi's until his battery died and then started snapping away with my old iphone 3. Trust me, in reality it was far more beautiful...

Heather Robinson said...

And I feel the same about your many stylish adventures and inspiring painting, Jeanne! Cheers to beauty!
xoxoxo

Heather Robinson said...

Sacred? Merci, Edgar. They are to me...

Mumbai said...

...and eerie as well...don't you think so? When that happened I always wonder what's behind all this?

Lisa Southard said...

Foraging and sunsets - this is all delicious! x

Heather Robinson said...

Thank you, Lisa. It is both wild and yet lovely land in the Alpilles. I think that you would appreciate it!

Joan McKniff said...

As am I.

Joan McKniff said...

Beautiful, on so many levels.