By Peter Mayle
During this witty and warm-hearted account, Peter Mayle tells what it's wish to detect a long-cherished dream and truly movement right into a 200-year-old stone farmhouse within the distant kingdom of the Lubéron along with his spouse and huge canine. He endures January's frosty mistral because it comes howling down the Rhône Valley, discovers the secrets and techniques of goat racing in the course of the heart of city, and delights within the wonderful nearby food. A 12 months in Provence transports us into all of the earthy pleasures of Provençal lifestyles and we could us reside vicariously at a pace ruled by way of seasons, now not via days.
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Additional resources for A Year in Provence
It was the standard Citroën deux chevaux, a model that has changed very little in the past twenty-five years. Consequently, spare parts are available in every village. Mechanically it is not much more complicated than a sewing machine, and any reasonably competent blacksmith can repair it. It is cheap, and has a comfortingly low top speed. Apart from the fact that the suspension is made of blancmange, which makes it the only car in the world likely to cause seasickness, it is a charming and practical vehicle.
By 12:30 the little stone-walled restaurant was full. There were some serious stomachs to be seen—entire families with the embonpoint that comes from spending two or three diligent hours every day at the table, eyes down and conversation postponed in the observance of France’s favorite ritual. The proprietor of the restaurant, a man who had somehow perfected the art of hovering despite his considerable size, was dressed for the day in a velvet smoking jacket and bow tie. His mustache, sleek with pomade, quivered with enthusiasm as he rhapsodized over the menu: foie gras, lobster mousse, beef en croûte, salads dressed in virgin oil, hand-picked cheeses, desserts of a miraculous lightness, digestifs.
There is a season for everything in Provence, and the first two months of the year must be devoted to procreation. We have never dared ask. The cold weather brought less private pleasures. Apart from the peace and emptiness of the landscape, there is a special smell about winter in Provence which is accentuated by the wind and the clean, dry air. Walking in the hills, I was often able to smell a house before I could see it, because of the scent of woodsmoke coming from an invisible chimney. ” The fireplace in Provence is still used—to cook on, to sit around, to warm the toes, and to please the eye—and fires are laid in the early morning and fed throughout the day with scrub oak from the Lubéron or beech from the foothills of Mont Ventoux.
A Year in Provence by Peter Mayle