“My Gifts from Brittany” – by Debbie Ambrous

Do you still have a youthful curiosity for exploration?

Do you still have a youthful curiosity for exploration?

I’m thankful for a teaspoonful of Brittany: a small taste of sea, sand, sailboats, fortified castles, stone-built ramparts and a plate of delicious mussels served with a view of a pink cloud hovering above the bay’s rippling tidal water.

Imagine a young woman, an artist, in her twenties from Chicago moving to France back in the 60’s. She fell in love with a young, volatile painter and bought a run-down Breton farmhouse with outbuildings, all needing complete renovation with no floors, plumbing or electricity. The villagers’ lives had changed very little since the Middle Ages. The young couple separated, and the young lady was left behind in the hamlet with their child. Mom and daughter formed a friendship with a peasant woman despite generations of age difference, and no similarities of culture, or language. Marjorie Price lived these experiences and wrote her memoir in the book “A Gift from Brittany” which undoubtedly influenced my opinion of the region since I enjoyed reading the beautifully written story. I hoped that some of this era was still evident in Brittany except with modern sanitary facilities.

Another young one with curiosity with strong hands guiding her way ...

A young one with curiosity and strong hands guiding her way …

Another influence that affected my view of the region happened in the 80’s. I had the gift of a daughter – named Brittany. Britney Spears had no influence on the name since she entered the scene later. My inspiration came from a travel magazine with picturesque scenes of the French villages of Brittany and the colorful costumes with embroidery and lace used for festivals. I thought the name was beautiful, and I considered using Dinan, the featured town in the magazine, as my daughter’s middle name. But I rejected the name in favor of Elizabeth, her great-grandmother’s name, since I thought a spelling confusion with the name Diane could cause problems in the future.

My Brittany wore the typical baby bonnets with lace, ruffles and embroidery, but nothing to compare to the lacy creations by the Bretons in France!

In a display case at Chateau Villandry - Loire Valley (not Brittany)

In a display case at Chateau Villandry – Loire Valley (not Brittany)

In years past newborn Breton children customarily dressed in a bonnet, gown and apron. They continued dressing in this pattern until they were five or six years old. Breton clothing differed from one area to the next, and it was possible to tell the exact geographical origin of a person by their dress. In one area young women wore a small, flowery shawl; married women wore a shawl with squares; widows wore a white shawl, and when a close relative died, a winged headdress was worn. Unmarried men wore green coats, and married men wore blue jackets. The most impressive lacework headdress is worn by the Bigouden, which are nearly thirteen inches high! They are shown proudly on the heads of the older women on Sundays.

At the last of April of this year, Jim and I closed the doors of our rental car which was parked a short distance from the main entrance – Porte St. Vincent – a gateway in the walls which are twenty-three feet thick! A stairway leads up to the rampart walls, but we had coffee and croissants on our minds, not a long walk. That could wait until later. We had arrived early, snagging the close parking space by the quiet marina with its watery parking spaces for ships, yachts and fishing boats, colorfully welcoming us to St. Malo’s walled city.IMG_1569 Inside the walls, the city was awakening with metal, protective doors sliding up and opening to glass shop display windows and awnings cranked in place. People rushed to work, and children wearing backpacks trudged to school. A modern boulangerie with lime-green chairs wrapped around a side-street; there we savored our wonderful coffee and flaky, buttery croissants. Then, we could face the many steps of walking along the narrow streets, through the square with the children’s play equipment, up the stairs, down the stairs, along the sand, on the massive rocks, up the stairs again, along the ramparts, down the stairs again, along the street by the many restaurants and to the parking lot. Back in the car we rushed away to Mont St. Michel – Jim’s favorite destination which I hope you saw last week. My turn for show-and-tell is this week. IMG_1698IMG_1623IMG_1635

A walk along the rampart walls ...

A walk along the rampart walls …

Since I took you dizzily along the fast track of all of our steps, I will return to the walled city of St. Malo and drop a name you may remember if you were paying attention in history class. Do you remember the name you missed on the exam about the explorer who sailed from his native St. Malo in 1534 for Newfoundland? Here is a hint: he discovered the estuary of the St. Lawrence River and following the river upstream, he discovered Canada! The territory was named New France.

Jacques Cartier

Jacques Cartier

Yes, his name was Jacques Cartier. A statue is erected in his honor on the ramparts and his tomb is in the north chapel of the Cathedral St. Vincent, the one with all of the grimacing gargoyles. You say your history teacher resembled one of the gargoyles?

The history of St. Malo tells a story of fiercely independent people who accumulated great fortune. Privateers and ship owners became rich here, building grand private residences, and these homes can be seen today as proof. Almost eighty percent of the city was destroyed in 1944, but it was rebuilt in the same manner using much of the same building materials. There are many museums, historic monuments, sculptures, artwork and many discoveries waiting to be seen in and around this city, a place that is lively with interesting people, tasty food, incredible history and beautiful scenes in every direction. See it for yourself, if possible, or enjoy a travel magazine like I did when I named my last child Brittany.

Have you named a child, dog, cat or parakeet for a beloved location? What did you think of St. Malo? Do you like this location better than Mont St. Michel? Or, do you side with Jim? Careful with your answer!

Thank you for coming along with us? Jim and I always enjoy seeing your comments. They are truly the reward at the end of the story.

Next week will possibly be a vacation week for me with no post on the website. Stay safe, healthy and warm.  Reach for A French Opportunity” for your fireside reading during the winter!

“Jim’s Favorite – Mont St. Michel” – by Debbie Ambrous

IMG_1710-1Sound the trumpets, clash the cymbals and beat the kettle drums! And, run to tell Jim that I’m finally sharing Mont St. Michel, his favorite! Sorry, it’s too late for the newsflash. I caught a glimpse of him at the doorway when he sneaked a peek at the photos on my laptop. I heard his giggle.

My photography of France and other locations from our travels is framed and scattered around the house among the photos of friends and family. Jim has only one picture from his camera on the wall. Well, actually, he claims another one that I contend is mine – all mine! He should know that I took the picture of the Sleeping Beauty Castle that hangs just inside our front door, but he disagrees quite erroneously. At least we agree that he struck the image of Mont St. Michel, his single entry of majesty above his well-worn comfy chair with the cushion proclaiming: “It’s Good to be the King!IMG_1710I am not totally smitten with the “Wonder of the Western World” sited on the western coast in a bay with the highest tides in France. Aubert, Bishop of Avranches, built and consecrated a small church on the 16th October 709. In 966 a community of Benedictines settled on the rock at the request of the Duke of Normandy, and the pre-Romanesque church was built before the year one thousand. (CLICK here for more history.) UNESCO classed Mont Saint-Michel as a world heritage site in 1979. Tourists swarm here each year, mounting to a total of more than three million visitors!IMG_1733

The crowds of tourists and the long line of shops displaying junky souvenirs spoiled the first impression for me. Disney theme park on a jam-packed day of screaming, shoving, loud tourists came to mind instead of a French monument. The history in the ancient stones didn’t speak to me; there was no life within the walls. Mont St. Michel claims only 44 citizens living therein, probably hiding away from the people arriving by the busloads. When Jim and I first visited several years ago, we parked at the front door after driving on the causeway. Now, the parking is some distance away with trams regularly taking tourists back and forth. Construction is underway with conservation and protection of the UNESCO site as the primary objective.

Mont St. Michel was our focus, especially for Jim. However, I hoped to see more of Brittany and Normandy during our short time away from our rental house in the Loire valley. Our first night was in an inexpensive, rather plain hotel a short distance from Jim’s heartthrob. He slipped out of bed very early while I was still sleeping and left a note so I would know about his rendezvous. Like an excited little boy, he returned grinning to tell me: “I found a place you can take pictures of a huge flock of sheep in front of Mont St. Michel! Get your camera and let’s go!” Not even dressed fully and without the benefit of a hairbrush yet, I said, “Not before coffee!IMG_1720In the early morning, we went the short distance to the Kodak-sheep-Michel-spot and found it wasn’t a secret location. A busload of Japanese visitors snapped selfies with the sheep, and we smiled at their delight.

Cows graze here, also.  Ahh! Butter!!

Cows graze here, also. Ahh! Butter!!

We left them posing for Facebook photos and we drove on to Saint Malo, a place on the coast that we had not seen previously. In many ways, I preferred it over Mont St. Michel, but that was not Jim’s travel advisory. We knew we had to hit the road from there by noon since I wanted Jim to fully enjoy his visit to the place that ranks a place on the wall by his easy chair. We found a great photography location, out of the way with only a couple of cars parked under the trees. After carefully locking the car doors, we walked on a polder, or dike wall, for a distant view of the towering beauty in the bay. I wished that I had taken my tripod for a less shaky image, especially for the night photography. I will try to stop complaining since I made the sacrifice for luggage space. We were a little worried about safety in this out-of-the way spot, so we returned to our car quickly after we got our photos and drove to the huge parking lot. Trams moved around quickly, but the walk from the parking lot can be quite some distance depending upon the parking spot.

Once we were moving along, I noticed an older couple seated near us. The sweet, gray-haired lady wore simple clothing, not stylish, reminding me of my mother who continued to wear blouses with ruffles and lace that she had sewn back in the sixties. I mentally put myself with Jim in the older couple’s place. Would we return for a nostalgic view of Jim’s much-loved place in France in years to come? When the tram stopped, we stood aside honoring the elderly couple and allowing them to move down for the long walk to the entry. Low and behold, they took off like the hare while we were slow as the turtle. My knee was complaining from all of the walking at St. Malo, not to mention the rambling around for photos on the dike. The old couple way ahead of us seemed fit for a marathon. We followed in their dust to our check-in at Les Terrasses Poulard. I had watched for several days until I saw a good rate on AARP for the hotel, and it was worth the price to be on the island when the majority of the tourists went away.IMG_1774IMG_1783We walked the ramparts with views of the bay all around and then selected a restaurant in the Hotel la Croix Blanche. Massive windows provided a panoramic scene of the sunset and protected us from the cold winds. During warmer weather, there are tables on the outside terrace. In the corner of the restaurant, a long table was surrounded by a lively group. The elderly marathon runners presided over the group. I couldn’t believe the transition when I saw the lady speaking with such authority and energy. Maybe it was the wine. Pour a glass for me.IMG_1745

Claudio and Jennifer - friendly and helpful service

Claudio and Jennifer – friendly and helpful service Hotel la Croix Blanche Restaurant

We knew before we entered the restaurant that we wanted mussels, a rare treat for us. We first enjoyed mussels in Sintra, Portugal, and I’m sure we will never find the exact taste again, but on Mont Saint Michel we had our mussels and frites and tried to keep up with the aged folks at the corner table.

After dessert, we walked in the rosy glow of the setting sun to the entry to see the waters rising. Some unfortunate soul had parked in the wrong place and had to call a tow truck to take away the car after the water climbed above the doors. I hope his insurance didn’t exclude Mont St. Michel. IMG_1797IMG_1798Now, this is the essence of Jim’s love for the island. I don’t mean the car in the water, although if he had an old jalopy he would probably sacrifice it to be overwhelmed by the tides. Actually, his 1999 Acura would qualify as a jalopy; at least it’s safe in Alabama. The tide’s powerful and rapid forces totally fascinate Jim. He stayed on the island with his sister Virginia and took photos of the tide’s progression in an almost time-lapse fashion. Virginia has more patience than I’ve ever given her credit for!

Just get Jim going, and he will tell you all about the tides saying how dangerous it is to be caught on the sands close to the incoming tides since you cannot outrun them. When he finishes rising and falling with the tides, he may tell you about the time he and Virginia stayed out so late that the hotel’s front desk was closed with their key inside. No worries, they went to a bar next door and found help so they could snooze on the island while the waters were rising.

The tides can vary greatly, at roughly 14 meters (46 ft.) between high and low water marks. Popularly nicknamed “St. Michael in peril of the sea” by medieval pilgrims making their way across the flats, the mount can still pose dangers for visitors who avoid the causeway and attempt the hazardous walk across the sands from the neighboring coast.
Occasional flooding has created salt marsh meadows that were found to be ideally suited to grazing sheep. The well-flavored meat that results from the diet of the sheep in the pré salé (salt meadow) makes agneau de pré-salé (salt meadow lamb) a local specialty that may be found on the menus of restaurants…

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After sleeping soundly, we were up and going early in the morning. The fog swept through the narrow lane creating a dream sequence in the clouds. Our luggage clattered on the stones, shattering the silence and opening the way for the next sightseers with their hopes and dreams of the “Wonder of the Western World.” I turned to have one last look and saw the hazy fog had folded the scene from view.


 

“Watcher of the Tides”
Oh, Watcher of the Tides, do you see?
“I love you” is etched on every grain of sand.
Oh, Watcher of the Tides, do you know?
An everlasting love – until the tides are no more.
Debbie Ambrous

Don’t forget to leave comments for Jim! He will want to hear what you think about his dear old Mont St. Michel. I wouldn’t be surprised if he caused the story to go viral! Look for the book “A French Opportunity” at  Amazon, available in paperback and on Kindle.

Perhaps you would enjoy these stories if you didn’t previously see them.  Just CLICK below:

“Free Stuff” – by Debbie Ambrous

Chateau Carrouges - 16th Century Gatehouse

Chateau Carrouges – 16th Century Gatehouse

Send your order in the next ten minutes and receive a FREE set of stainless steel cookware!” Have you ever been tempted into these promotions of FREE stuff that isn’t free in the least?

Valuable Free Stuff
Some free stuff is valuable, however. A red rose bush by my front door is welcoming visitors with sweet fragrance and dainty blossoms that bring a smile to my face. No credit cards or cash purchased the rose with branches woven into the stair railing and wrapped around my heart.mamarose My frail mama in her eighties, wearing a big straw sunhat, dug her trowel into the rich, black soil near the front window of her house – the window she looked through to watch the birds and her portion of the world pass by each day. A small stem with a delicate root system emerged, and with a big smile Mama presented it to me as a FREE gift. She isn’t there to look through the big window to see the blue birds and the brightly colored butterflies dart among her flowers anymore. Now, I gaze through my glass door to the flourishing rose bush and remember. Ah, yes, this is one of the valuable free gifts, worth more than the expensive ones that fade, rust, go out of style or tossed into the garbage.

What are your FREE gifts, worth more than money can buy?

A Bouquet, a Drawing and a Big Kiss
France heaped some of the free gifts into our arms without the necessary euros or credit cards in Jim’s wallet. We met new friends who lavished us with friendliness and kindness that we will treasure.IMG_0950 A lush bouquet of lilacs and roses was presented to me by a group of sweet children. One of the children, a little boy who is all-boy, rarely quiet and bursting with energy, drew a picture for me with a note in French. Translated from French the note said: “Hello, I hope you like the drawing. Love and a big kiss, Ilann.”

 

IMG_4644Thank you, Ilann! I love your picture of a French house with a giant tree, birds, a cat, the forest and a castle at the end of the road. You have a vivid imagination! Your artwork is safely kept in Alabama. I hope to see you again.

FREE CHATEAU TOUR
Occasionally, Jim’s wallet stayed in his pocket when we enjoyed a chateau visit. These rare, FREE CHATEAU tours were very welcome to lighten the cost of our trip. I am not complaining that the fee is too expensive at the castles and other monuments. I totally support the contributions for the upkeep as very worthwhile. IMG_1874Chateau Carrouges was a wonderful surprise and a free treat for Jim and me. We didn’t have any pictures to lure us to the site, so we were startled in a very good way when we crested the hill and looked down below to the pepper-pot towers and an orchard of flowering apple trees.IMG_1900 Yellow wildflowers and bluebells freshly decorated the grounds with their cry of spring and beyond the chateau, misty green hills beckoned in the distance. Chateau Carrouges, founded in the fourteenth century by Jean de Carrouges, has all of the attributes of a grand chateau with moats, terraces and a grand gatehouse. The chateau was in the Le Veneur de Tillieres family for almost 500 years before it was bought by the state. We found the gates open and no one to pay our admission fee for the entrance. The state lost on this one. We couldn’t enter the chateau, but the grounds were open for us to walk and enjoy. The chateau is constructed of brick, very unusual for the area and beautiful.IMG_1883IMG_1894 I fully enjoyed walking under the apple trees, heavy with pink blossoms, a delight for me to photograph and simply admire in the sunshine since we do not have apple orchards like these in the southern climate of Alabama. I had spotted a few apple orchards when Jim was driving, but none of them were convenient for a stop. I was pleased to have a whole orchard to myself. A few other tourists came and wandered around also, but we had it to ourselves most of the time. Such a wonderful FREE CHATEAU!

Could it be Onslow?
We had left our rental house in the Loire valley at Brehemont with St. Mont Michel as our main destination, but we hoped to see more of Normandy on our short two-day jaunt. On the return we squeezed in the chateau and a short tour of Bagnoles-de-l’Orne, a spa town which attracts thousands of arthritis sufferers to the thermal waters. Legend says that Hugues de Tesse left his horse Rapide to die quietly of old age in the forest, only for the animal to trot home in good health! Old Hugues found that a spring was the cause; he took a dip in the horse-curing waters and was rejuvenated. Unfortunately, the thermal rejuvenation is not a free gift. We absorbed only the atmosphere of gracious houses built for the wealthy and merchants’ window displays of expensive goods for the rich shoppers.

Bagnoles

Bagnoles-de-l’Orne , France

Bagnoles

Bagnoles-de-l’Orne, France

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We believe we spotted Onslow, one of the stars of “Keeping Up Appearances” a funny Brit-Com that we like to watch. He seemed out of place toting a shopping bag with pink handles and wearing only an undershirt in this rich town, but Onslow always dresses like this with a laid-back and no-care attitude.

In the comedy show, Onslow’s character is the lovable slob watching the telly whose ambition is to remain bone idle according to his wife Daisy.IMG_1853 Daisy reads romance novels, imagining a handsome man who gets her motor running. Hyacinth Bucket is the social-climbing sister with the primary aim of impressing people, especially the upper class of society. Hyacinth tries to avoid her poorer relatives, but rushes to their aid with love when she is needed. Richard is her long-suffering husband. Have you seen this series of comedy shows? Can you see Hyacinth wearing one of the hats in the photos and hoping she is mistaken for royalty?

Keeping Up Appearances: A Job for Richard” (1993)
Onslow: I’ll say this much for your Hyacinth, she leaves a lot of happiness behind her. It’s such a relief when she’s gone.
Onslow: Listen, Daisy. When I promised to love, honour and obey, I didn’t necessarily mean “every” Tuesday.
Hyacinth: Today could be the day I’m mistaken for somebody important.

Geoffrey Hughes – (February 2, 1944 – July 27, 2012) Mr. Hughes was an English stage, television and film star with many credits to his name, but we especially remember and thank him for the comedy of his performance as Onslow. I would like to think that he would have enjoyed “Free Stuff.”

So, there you have it: a free chateau, an opportunity to cure what ails you and Onslow with attitude. I would say that it was an all-around good day in France!  Thank ya’ll and come again!  Write a note below “free” without the first-class mail that Hyacinth demands!

 

“Opp Fest – 2014” – by Debbie Ambrous

IMG_4584Antique cars were gleaming in the sunshine, polished by their prideful owners for Opp Fest, and attracting young and old admirers. I found my best vantage point up a flight of stairs in front of the municipal building. I focused my camera for a photo of the line-up of colorful people and cars. Down below, I saw Jim shaking hands with a handsome fellow and hugging a nice-looking lady. Could that be Elaine, our old high-school teacher? Nah!! If so, she has hardly aged at all! Now, I know you are thinking anyone who taught us would be old, decrepit or lying under a tombstone. You are dead wrong! Elaine is still looking very attractive, and even more, she had a handsome guy on her arm; that lady is cougar material for sure! Whatever her secret is, it’s working!

Have you driven a car like this?

Have you driven a car like this?

This beauty was before my time, more in my parent's day instead.

This beauty was before my time, more in my parent’s day instead.

We parted company and continued our nosing around the antique autos. Back in the day, we remembered the cars on display, some just like the ones our parents or friends had owned. I stopped by a few of the models that I recognized from my youth, lost in reminiscence, thinking of the lovely people who drove cars just like these on the streets of Opp. I remembered: Mrs. Sasser had a Buick like this; Mr. Jackson drove a Ford exactly like the black one; Daddy owned a Studebaker similar to this one and Jim’s mother gave us a 1956 Chevy just one year older than the showy model on display. I parked Daddy’s turquoise Chevy with the high fins and shiny chrome to take my driver’s license test – in the very spot where the old cars were displayed. Somehow, I passed the test –even the parallel parking – the part of the test I dreaded most. Years have passed since then with many hours clocked under the steering wheel. That young teenager who was terrified of the officer who sat in the front seat for the test has different worries now. That scene seems only like a dream. Hard to believe that it happened in the same spot that I was standing. Hmm.. I better move on and catch up with the cougar.

I asked Jim, “What’s with keeping the car hoods open? I can’t get good photographs with the ugly engine out in the open.” Jim set me straight saying, “Why, that’s the key portion to display! Hours and hours have been spent refurbishing those engines, and in case you don’t realize it, that’s the most important part of the car!IMG_4582 Still not impressed with his answer, I said, “I still don’t get it. They should keep the hood down and just show the pretty outside appearance, like a lady who wants to impress someone, she …” Laughing at me, Jim said, “Yeah, you don’t know where you’re going with that line, do you?” He was right. It has been a long time. In fact, it was back to the time of these old cars when ladies dressed with the “hood down” so to speak. I must admit that women here in our community don’t dress like Kardashian as much as the Miami crowd where one could easily blush on a daily basis at the plunging necklines and short skirts only an inch or so from the crotch line.

We moved on to the art display and enjoyed the children’s art work first. Notice Charlize Mae Qualls won first prize with her creative entry.IMG_4592 Many families with cute children in tow were having a great day at Opp Fest. I saw one adorable little girl with a big bow in her curly blonde hair running around enthusiastically. I love capturing pictures of children, and I manage to snap great photos of young ones very often. IMG_4598But sometimes after I ask permission from the parents, the children go berserk, hiding under tables, running in sheer fright, crying and screaming. No coaxing or bribing will work. The cute little blonde finally warmed up to me a little bit, showing her pretty face and a timid smile. Thank you!

The art display next door at the Opp Cultural Arts Center was very impressive and included an entry by Toby Hollinghead.

Painting by: TOBY HOLLINGHEAD

Painting by: TOBY HOLLINGHEAD

You may remember an earlier post about the talented Ms. Hollinghead that also led to my interview of Doug Gitter with Gitter Gallery. Don’t miss these stories, if you did not see them earlier. CLICK here for Toby Hollinghead and CLICK here for Doug Gitter. I enjoyed meeting these interesting and talented people, and I’m very thankful that I had the privilege of sharing their stories here on A French Opportunity. The website for the Opp Cultural Arts Center has a great quote: “All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist when we grow up.Pablo Piccaso

He smiled for me like the next Brad Pitt!

He smiled for me like the next Brad Pitt!

 

 

If you missed our Opp Fest visit in 2012, CLICK to enjoy more pictures.

We enjoyed seeing the crafts on display such as Debra Coon’s booth. I searched for something cute to buy for grandson Daniel, but didn’t find his size. She has great items at very reasonable prices.IMG_4612

Drifting toward the bandstand to hear the music, people were gathered in a semi-circle, seated in the sunshine. I moved in close to the cute lead singer – Ethan King – while he sang with his heart in every word. IMG_4610His arms were deeply tanned and muscled like he worked hard for a living. He leaned toward me and I captured his ruggedly handsome features with my camera. Jim doesn’t worry about any romantic entanglement when I move upstage in these situations. No. He worried that I would be entangled in the sound system with its huge speakers and that my big feet would kick out the sound, or knock out the entire City of Opp’s electricity! I’m moving with more finesse than that, almost like a cougar!

After enjoying my photo session with the singer, I was wondering why no one was applauding after each song. The cute and talented performer was pouring his heart out, and the band was working up a sweat in the heat, yet no one clapped! I turned and asked a few folks near me about the applause in a low voice. Either they didn’t hear me, or thought I should mind my own business, because no one replied. Jim put his arm around me and shoved me on down the street. He offered this advice, “Do you remember in the movie ‘Marie Antoinette’ when she was at the opera and no one clapped? She was top of the heap then so everybody clapped along with her when she asked them to join her. But then later on when folks thought she was lower than scum and she clapped at the opera, they sat and stared at her like she was a low-down skunk. I think we should mosey over here to the pork skin and boiled peanuts stand since I’m not King Louis XVI! No clapping, ya’ hear?IMG_4618We didn’t cover all of the exhibits and didn’t go to the carnival to see the amusement rides. I don’t have as many photos as I would have liked since my knee was hurting. A few days before Opp Fest, I fell at the end of our driveway and smashed my knee which still looked like a cross between a watermelon and a purple cabbage. You didn’t know, did you? I thought there was some reason you didn’t send flowers and chocolates.

We met up with some of Jim’s kinfolks as we were leaving. As you can see, he was happy to get reacquainted. Ya’ll come back now!  We had great fun at Opp Fest!  Hope to see you there next year!

Jim and his kinfolk - Thanks for being such a good sport, Jim!!!

Jim and his kinfolk – Thanks for being such a good sport, Jim!!!  Did you win a prize for ME?

We hope to show off grandson Daniel at Opp Fest one day!

We hope to show off grandson Daniel at Opp Fest one day!

 

 

 

Could you leave a message below in the reply area?  Enjoy hearing from you!

Since I don’t have anything much for the French theme on this page, I have added photos on the (CLICK) France – Storytelling and Pictures page. I created the page when I started the blog with this type of situation in mind. Enjoy!

The hot pink bag lady hopes you click on the book below to ORDER YOUR COPY.

The hot pink bag lady hopes you click on the book to ORDER YOUR COPY of  A French Opportunity.