Monday, February 6, 2012



Scared ya, didn’t I?

I know, I know…it’s been a really long time. I’ve been away on my yearly Christmas trek to the Midwest and even extended my trip a bit. Each year I think I’m going to blog while I’m away and, of course, I never do. And each year it takes me a couple more weeks to chew my way out of my self-built cocoon and “get on the stick”, as my mother used to say.  I can hear her saying it now…in my head of course. But the things mothers say, even if their echos are only bouncing off the walls of your brain, can be VERY, VERY LOUD!

It was a wonderful trip and even better because it was longer than I expected.  Time with friends and extra time with family warmed my heart and soul. And this year, I did not frostbite my toes or anything else for that matter because it was unseasonably mild.  In fact, I heard on the radio that it had yet to get below zero, which is simply unheard of for a Minnesota January.

Even so, I made my yearly trek (okay, I was probably there 10 times in 5 weeks) to the Valley of the Gods... my shopping nirvana, TJ Maxx.  I bought plenty of warm sweaters, a new coat, new boots, and wool socks and such because I always imagine that it’s going to be so cold when I get back to Aix en Provence.  Even though I live in the south of France, I often feel colder here than I ever do in Minnesota.  I am not alone in this feeling; my other ex-pat friends complain continually about how cold they feel here in the winter. It’s probably because we have stone floors and little tiny heaters that do not much more than heat the wall they’ve been placed on.  No such thing as central heat, near as I can tell. 

I arrived in Marseille donned in my new wool coat with the fur collar thinking I was all that and was spit out into 60 degrees and sunny. Feeling ridiculous did not mar one bit the glory of the warmth and the smell of the sea once again. It’s just too bad I spent the rest of the day unpacking because the next two days were dreary and rainy and then…..the snow arrived.

I’m not feeling so ridiculous now in my woolies and fur! Because the snow and cold have just kept on coming. Not grand measures of the white stuff but you have to understand one inch in Provence is probably equal to one foot in Minnesota. Except it causes more PANIC! And it's bone-chilling. 

Maybe I'm making excuses for constructing a cozy cabin around myself and cutting myself off. And maybe I'm just making an excuse for what I'm doing now. Which I'm not going to tell you about until the next post!

It's good to be back. If you're out there and still reading, I'd love to hear from you. Sorry about the scare!  

Have a great week, my friends.



  1. Was imagining you in your warm coat and socks walking around Aix as I read this... and you looked FAB! Also, good to hear you are WARM:)


  2. You're alive. YEAH!!!! I was beginning to worry.

  3. You're hearing shrieks of glee! Even though you didn't show up in Blogger reading list, I kept checking back on your site, in case Blogger had screwed up. Welcome, welcome, welcome.

    I can't wait to hear what you're doing, although I hope it's fun and still in Provence.

  4. Great to see you back, Delana.

    This Arctic weather is a real shock down here, isn't it? Minus 10°C here this morning. I don't even remember it being that cold when I lived near London, probably cos of the coastal climate (or whatever it is).

    Anyway, stay snug. Looking forward to reading about your next project.

  5. So glad you are back! Yes, it is a strange year for weather. While we are freezing our butts in Europe, the milder temps in Minnesota, mean the ice fishers have to worry about falling through la glace!

  6. Hi from another ex-pat living near Aix, hailing from Minnesota :) And yes, isn't it cold this week!

  7. Yay! You're back. We still watch for your words of wisdom and I'm still enjoying your beautiful rug. Update us on the business. How is it going?

  8. Still here waiting for your new adventures!!!xoCO

  9. I was thinking about you yesterday and checked your blog to see if I had missed one. Thought a new man in your life might be keeping you preoccupied.
    My trusty boots that I bought in London that kept my feet so nice and warm throughout Europe have been parked underneath our outdoor sink here in Costa Rica for the past month. My feet are now adjusting to their new found freedom again.

  10. Thank goodness you're back. I didn't have anything to read!
    -Mark Craft

  11. So glad you're back!! I love your blog/window into the French world I dream about- and I was going through withdrawal.

    And I never realized that buildings wouldn't be heated(?)... thanks for letting us know. Must stock up on the warm stuff before I make the move!

  12. You're back just in time for our rendezvous on the 25th - which I'm REALLY looking forward to by the way. And since TJ Maxx is your mecca, and mine too, we're going to get along just fine :-)

  13. Welcome back [home?], Delana! I remember last year when you arrived back in France after seeing the family, and how difficult it was for you to "restart" your engine. I figured that's what was happening again this year.

    It's just a shift in our perceptions, isn't it? The adjustment when we travel home, and the adjustment when we arrive back to our other can give our souls a little jolt, can't it?

    Can't wait to hear what you're up to. Whatever it is, I hope you're enjoying yourself!

  14. Kara-Thanks. I'm feeling better already. In fact I am...I'm in a nice, warm place right now.

    Wonky-I know I know you...but tell me who you are. I just went to your site, and if I don't know you, I should!

    Lee-OMG, shrieks of glee! I'm so glad you're still there reading. When I get a better connection, I'll have to start reading too!

    Sarah-We'll all just have to sit tight and wait for it to blow over...or for our poor, unprotected pipes to freeze.

    Pat-So funny you should mention the ice fishers. They were still on the ice, in spite of the warmth when I was home. And imagine that....they were falling through. Sometimes I think those guys go into some sort of brain freeze.

    Merdith- So nice to have you here. Write me a letter and we can get together for coffee. My email is on the "MOI" page. I'd love to hear from you.

    Paulita-Wisdom might a too strong a word to describe mine! I'm so glad you like your rug and though business is down, we're working on ways to give it a boost.

    Anonymous-You're so....anonymous!

    Jackye-always the optimist, aren't you? I know, thank goodness for my sheepskin slippers. You must be reveling in the warmth down there. I want to hear all about this version of the adventure. Soon.


  15. Well, if it took longer to you to come back because you had to check at TJ Maxx, I understand.
    Welcome home, I was in need of a good laugh!

  16. I was afraid you had fallen under a stack of rugs - or hopeful that business was so good you were spending all of your time at the Post Office. Glad you're back. You add a little something extra to the blog-o-sphere!

  17. Glad that you are back again. This weather is quite ridiculous. Thankfully we have pretty good heating in our house here. Our home in Johannesburg had no means of heating, they seem to forget that Africa can get VERY cold in winter and yes even snow occasionally! Diane

  18. I thought i'd left a comment...but must have forgotten to press something.Welcome back....and hope things warm up for you!


Talk to me!