Spaces Between Posts

I feel as though I should be posting more, but I can’t see how I could!

Between classes, riding in the van to various sights, walking around and visiting those sites and then EATING, it’s hard to see where I’d have time to get ANY blogging done. And I feel the poorer for it.

I miss my several-times-a-week catching up on what is on my mind, and feel as though the past two weeks have been more about a travelogue of my trip in France than musings on a hand knit designer’s life & fiber experience.

But life is what it is, and right now a large part of mine is traveling by van all over Languedoc, France.

The new group arrived on Monday afternoon, Tuesday we had our first class then went into town for some shopping.

Cats (who looked a lot like Gigi back home) were befriended and gelato was eaten. This is Zophie, from Washington state, enjoying a bouquet of gelato crafted by the friendly neighborhood gelaterie artisan!

Wednesday was another class – a class where my exhaustion and the beautifully strong personalities of this group met an impasse and I talked myself into an uncomfortable situation.

But all is resolved, thank heaven, and I have new fodder for the learn-through-experience portion of my brain. This current group is an unusually strong group – which is really quite wonderful!

But it can also be exhausting – much like teaching Hannah – the benefits FAR outweight any difficulties, but it’s not the easiest teaching in the world.

Oh, well, nothing truly worthwhile is every simple or easy – and I’ve never been the easiest student myself!

Wednesday afternoon we went off to the Patchwork museum again, but instead of taking the tour this time I walked around the canal and enjoyed some solitude.

I watched the locks filling with water to transport a boat from the shallow end to the high end – fascinating – I couldn’t help but wish that Maxie were there to see it!

I’m finding that I require more time alone this week, which is most likely due to the fact I’m at the end of a two week stint away from Gerry and the kids. But it’s necessary, so I’m grabbing with I can.

Speaking of Gerry, at the patchwork museum one of the students let me use her cell phone (my own isn’t working here – no signal) and I FINALLY got to speak with Gerry. YAY!

He sounded very good, and apparently after a very hard week his blood numbers are on the rise and every day is a little better. He mentioned that he’s losing his facial hair, so I’m wondering WHAT I’ll see by the time I get home!

Dinner in Bezier – a lovely dinner but not quite the same as last week at the same establishment (my nose wouldn’t stop running, for one thing…) – which was preceded by a short hike up to the cathedral with a spectacular view of Bezier. Just lovely.

I ordered fish – little did I know I’d have to filet three small fishes on my plate – but I did it and here are the bones to prove it!

Obviously, the fellow having his head chopped off wasn’t having as much fun as we were.

Then back home to La Vingerone for the amount of rest we could all catch before rising this morning for a drive down to Collioure near the Spanish border.

Collioure is amazingly beautiful! We broke into smaller groups and wandered the streets, I settled at a sidewalk cafe and just KNIT for several hours. I have a deadline this Saturday and I’m NOT as far along as I’d hoped to be…

Just being able to spend time around so much natural beauty is astounding, and everyone on the trip appreciated it to the full!

The sheer volume of Gelato establishments in Collioure is breathtaking, I don’t know how I managed to only stop at one!
The flavors were excellent – but nothing like the Marron Glace that our hosts here at La Vignerone had for our dessert this evening! AMAZING! They have Marron spread that I MUST get before I leave!

I’m scheduled to leave on Saturday morning, so tomorrow is my last full day here. I hope that class goes well – there’s so much I’d still like to show the students! And then off for a final bit of shopping – finding gifts for folks back home who have done so much for us lately.
And, of course, a visit to Phildar (lovely yarn!) to see some great finished garments.

This has been an extraordinary trip – an amazing opportunity – and I hope that I’ve experienced it as well as I might. This past week was more of a challenge than I’d thought it would be, but we only grow when we’re challenged so I’m glad for the opportunity.

I’m very much looking forward to seeing the kids and Gerry – and Atticus and Gigi – but I’m also VERY excited about having the distance to reflect on this trip. Time and distance will let me do a post mortem on my teaching, the classes I offered and how it may have been done better. As always, I have a hard time hearing criticism – especially when I’m mid-week in classes – but it’s necessary to hear those things to become a better teacher!

I can’t decide if wine helps, or if it just makes it worse. One thing for sure, having a dinner that doesn’t stretch for 3 hours, a decent bedtime and a nice cup of tea (with MILK) when I want it will do wonders for my psyche. I’m loving France, but I love home more.

I miss my tea.

I miss my sleep.

I miss my GERRY!

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