Saturday, October 19, 2013

Yesterday was a slow, quiet day, catching up on the usual silly things and planning out the rest of my journey here,making reservations, etc. Then a lovely walk in hte forest near the ancient indigenous ruins again. The forest really does feel enchanted, like walking into a chldhood fairytale. Then a late night run through the rainy night to Nimes to pick up Diane and pick up our train tickets. Everything is a learning prcoess and we manage to make every possible mistake! We have done som wild things, like driving into a lane getting off a "motorway" that only accepted credit cards (European!) and then having to back up and get severa lanes over to pay in cash, only to realize that the earlier machine hadeaten  our ticket and cars lining up behind us, etc. Whoa!
Wonderful to have Diane here and she has turned on the heat. What a relief. I have come out of frozen mode. The first day of a week of rain. Wandered through Anduze buying food for a feast with friends. Diane is a gourmet cook, Coral and I chopped and cleaned like good sous chefs for several hours while Diane cooked and something outrageously delicious appeared. Discovering new foods--quinces and giant wild mushrooms--and. . .    Then off to dinner with a group of Welsh and British friends. Lots of fun. The group included two professional walking guides who take groups all over, including the wild mountains of Georgia (Russian). Heard all about the French certification program for guides, hugely arduous, including 10 days of snow time in the Alpes, learning mountain rescue and survival techniques. I love the superfluid mix of peoples and cultures that has arisen since the Eurozone was established and Europeans can live and travel anywhere in the zone.
Found out that the south of France (Camargue area) has a Lakota community, descendants of  the people who came over here with the Buffalo Bill show and decided to stay. Amazing!
Tomorrow we visit Diane's friend Andre who studied with a Lakota man and has a pipe. Also amazing. He is also a gourmer chef. More outrageous food on the way.

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