25 April 2012

Looking forward

It's another windy, rainy day, with strong gusts from the south bringing in more noxious — for me — pollen. Yesterday wasn't as bad, so at least I had some temporary respite. This morning, my eyes are weepy and my nose is runny. I'm a sight to see, but my allergies were much worse in California than they've been here in the Loire Valley.

That's the sun, not the moon, over the vineyard

I went to see Madame Barbier for a haircut yesterday morning. I told her about my allergy attack — it was obvious that I wasn't feeling or looking great, and I didn't want her to think I had come down with something contagious. When I brought it up, she said her young son has terrible allergies and has been seeing an allergist over in Romorantin for a few years now. He's undergoing désensibilisation treatments. Poor kid.

A rain of petals under this flowering tree
The French presidential election grinds on, with each candidate accusing the other of pandering to the extremes. They have to get votes somewhere, and there just aren't that many to be had in the political "center" — about 10% of those who voted in the first round of balloting.

Red leaves on my "wild" plum tree

Marine Le Pen has managed to put her far-right Front National party at the center of the top candidates' attention. Both François Hollande and Nicolas Sarkozy need to appeal to the nearly 20% of the voters who supported Le Pen the other day. French politics is ending up as polarized as U.S. politics. I guess it's always been polarized, but in decades past the Communists and various workers' parties and labor unions were more powerful than the right wing.

Nine years already...
Exactly nine years ago we became the owners of this house outside Saint-Aignan and started winding down our time in California. It'll soon be ten years since I withdrew from the working world. Yesterday on the radio, I heard an interviewer ask a guest where he thought he would be in 10 years' time. His answer was: who knows? I wonder if I wouldn't have given the same answer in April ten years ago.


  1. My 8th grader is in the middle of "désensibilisation" for allergies and it's not that bad. Nowadays, they do it by "gouttes" under the tongue. No shots. But your have to start in December/January to get relief by spring. Maybe you can do it next year.

  2. Meredith, Madame Barbier says her son is now on comprimés rather than gouttes and it's much easier all the way around. He doesn't have to be à jeun with the comprimés and can take them at any time of day as needed. (Now who is going to understand such franglais?)

  3. Happy home anniversary :)) That hanging does look quite nice there. I always love your photos of the house. Are you still really loving the loft? I must say, after all the work that we had done at our new-to-us house, I walk around sometimes and think, "Ahhh... I love my house :))" It's nice to have things the way you want them.

    Hey, do you by any chance remember a comment to your Poireaux Vinaigrette post on April 3, that was about Vermont ramps? That was my sister, Betsy! She's an architect and lives in Boston and Vermont, and she and her husband are huge fans of Europe, and she loves to follow your posts :))

  4. I hope the weather changes for you, and everyone there, very soon. The only allergy I have is to green peppers and it's relatively easy to avoid them.

  5. I hope your allergies are leaving soon. Love the colors of the plum tree. Those ten years have flown by!

  6. Judy, I was pretty sure Betsy was your sister. Maybe I'll get to meet her and see you again some day.

  7. I hope so, Ken! On both counts! :))


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