Single post

Sept. 17: Tuesday and Sept. 18: Wednesday

I’m writing this blog at 2 p.m. on Wednesday afternoon (Sept 18). Cathy and I have just finished a lunch of rocket, tomatoes, smoked roast chicken, goat cheese, Tomme de Savoie (cheese), baguette, peaches, strawberries, and, of course, chocolate – and a wee glass of red wine, just because “when in France, do as the French.” I have to say right here and now that, in my opinion, there is no place on earth for cheese like France – it is the best – the widest variety and the most yummy.   So, you may be wondering, what happened to Sept. 16? Well, Monday the 16th was a quiet day, yet demanding in its own way. First, getting out of bed was challenging, after that whopper-of-a-day Sunday. But we did get out of bed, and we made it to work on time, 7:30 a.m. I am still doing the gargantuan task of cleaning up the various garden beds, which, by the way, are covered in 6 inches of pine needles. Now, as previously mentioned in a photo caption, I love pine forests, pine trees and pine needles, but I fear I am getting my fill. I really should take some photos, because, otherwise, you just won’t believe the size of this task. I spent all of this morning (Wednesday morning) on it, too – in the same garden area – and I’ll be back at it on Thursday morning. Cathy, T, and S have been mostly doing some cutting back of plants and spraying of insecticide and fungicide where needed. I guess, considering that I could be doing that, that my pine needle clean up job suits me just fine. After work on Monday, Cathy and I returned to the apartment and made a lunch out of whatever was here – cheese, bread, fresh figs, wine and chocolate (like taking your vitamins every day!) Then I got to work writing the blog post about Sunday, while Cathy went out and wandered around, stopping at the store to buy food for supper (see a pattern to our days here?). Sunday’s trip to Porquerolles was a long blog post and took me about 3 hours. Once it was done, I went out with Cathy, walking around Bormes les Mimosas, buying cheese for supper, and stopping to make art. The first time we stopped was on a bench on a little side street and I created a collage and Cathy did a Caran d’Ache sketch. The second time we stopped was across the street from a busy restaurant and we sketched people. I haven’t done that in…oh…probably…20 years. So, I’m not willing to put my sketches in this post. Not yet, anyway. I’ll do some more sketching as time goes on and maybe then I’ll show them to you, after a bit of practice. Cathy doesn’t want me to post hers either, so I don’t feel so bad about my own reluctance. Unfortunately, being tired as I was, I didn’t get photos of either of our work sessions on Monday. But I do have photos of our two works, and they are first here in the photo section. When we returned to the apartment we had a supper of grated carrot salad, grated celery root salad, cheese, bread, wine & chocolate. Then we simply collapsed and went to bed early. Tuesday morning we worked in the garden from 7:30 – 11:30, then returned to the apartment, ate lunch, took showers, and headed off to one of the coastal walks (Sentier Littorale) with S and T. In their convertible!! Still a treat for me!! The day was sunny and warm, but the wind was strong all day, and, when it was blowing, made things chilly. It was actually great weather for such a walk, not too warm and not too cold, up until the very end when the wind became so fierce that we were sandblasted on the last stretch of beach back to our car. The photos tell the whole story. Note that we fit in an art session! Probably the best “studio” we have found so far. On the way home from our coastal walk, we stopped at the Dia supermarket and bought some food – a smoked roasted chicken, leeks and zucchini and tomatoes (which Cathy sauteed together for supper), baguette, wine & chocolate. The baguette was only half its size by the time we got it home – we were starving – lots of eating on this trip, have you noticed? After dinner I worked on this blog post, but was too tired to finish it, and Cathy did some reading. Again, another early night due to physical exhaustion. This morning, Wednesday, we worked at the garden 7:30 – 11:30, then went to the local outdoor market and bought veggies and cheese. Then we hung out our laundry. After a lunch of our usual, we have begun a chicken veggie soup, I am writing this blog post, and Cathy is sitting out on our patio. I’m sure we will do some art this afternoon, but other than that, we are resting today. Wednesday, 8 p.m.: Back to writing this post. Yes, we did do some art. We finished cooking the soup, took in our laundry, washed the cooking dishes and pots, then headed out the door at 5 p.m. with our art supplies. We wandered around till we found a fairly quiet square to do some sketching – there were a few passers-by who wanted to look over our shoulders to see what we were doing, but it was mostly peaceful. Then we went to a little place on the rue Carnot and ordered a beer for Cathy and a wine for me and we did some Caran d’Ache sketches and I did a collage. FUN!! Returning to our apartment we had a simple supper of bread, cheese, wine, chocolate, and an omelet for Cathy. A great day. Check out the photos at the end of this post. There are photos from three days here, Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday – so don’t get confused. Those of you out there who are reading this blog, please send me a comment. I am very curious about who is following this.
Debi's work, done out on a park bench in Bormes les Mimosas on Monday, Sept. 16.

Debi’s work, done out on a park bench in Bormes les Mimosas on Monday, Sept. 16.

Cathy's work, done out on a park bench in Bormes les Mimosas, on Monday, Sept. 16.

Cathy’s work, done out on a park bench in Bormes les Mimosas, on Monday, Sept. 16.

Tuesday afternoon - after our garden work and our lunch. On the road again! With our friends, S and T. Heading for a beach in La Londe called l'Argenterie (there is a sign in another photo, so check that spelling!)

Tuesday afternoon – after our garden work and our lunch. On the road again! With our friends, S and T. Heading for a beach in La Londe called l’Argenterie (there is a sign in another photo, so check that spelling!)

We went through wine country. Lots of grapes ripe for picking soon! We are looking to go to a winery for a tasting, but haven't made those plans yet.

We went through wine country. Lots of grapes ripe for picking soon! We are looking to go to a winery for a tasting, but haven’t made those plans yet.

Another shot of the wine country we passed through on our way to La Londe.

Another shot of the wine country we passed through on our way to La Londe.

Better than the Batmobile!! Even though the weather is getting cooler, and today was very windy, we are still cruising with the top down every chance we get.

Better than the Batmobile!! Even though the weather is getting cooler, and today was very windy, we are still cruising with the top down every chance we get.

Parking at the beach and putting the top back up.

Parking at the beach and putting the top back up.

Our first view of the beach, and here's the sign. I can't read it on my little iPad mini, can you see the correct spelling?

Our first view of the beach, and here’s the sign. I can’t read it on my little iPad mini, can you see the correct spelling?

Guess who? Starting our beach walk. It was very, very windy all day today and sometimes chilly - so we were on and off again all day with our sweaters, jackets, hoodies, whatever,

Guess who? Starting our beach walk. It was very, very windy all day today and sometimes chilly – so we were on and off again all day with our sweaters, jackets, hoodies, whatever,

This walk is a 4 hour walk, but we only did a portion of it and we did not begin at the beginning. We found a beach with free parking and started there. We walked an hour and 15 minutes out and the same amount of time back.

This walk is a 4 hour walk, but we only did a portion of it and we did not begin at the beginning. We found a beach with free parking and started there. We walked an hour and 15 minutes out and the same amount of time back.

View from the beach as we first started out.

View from the beach as we first started out.

Stairs, of course!!! Off the beach and onto the path.

Stairs, of course!!! Off the beach and onto the path.

Cathy and S, along the path.

Cathy and S, along the path.

A stunning view from the path.

A stunning view from the path.

Another stunning view from the path. The photos just don't do justice to the experience.

Another stunning view from the path. The photos just don’t do justice to the experience.

There were so many gorgeous views that I couldn't stop taking photos - I'm only showing you a small selection of them.

There were so many gorgeous views that I couldn’t stop taking photos – I’m only showing you a small selection of them.

The path. A bit precarious in spots. One needs sufficient footwear - more on that later.

The path. A bit precarious in spots. One needs sufficient footwear – more on that later.

More precarious  path. But those folks sitting in the sea made it down OK, so I can probably make it.

More precarious path. But those folks sitting in the sea made it down OK, so I can probably make it.

More stairs!!! Piece o'cake with sufficient footwear.

More stairs!!! Piece o’cake with sufficient footwear.

Yet another gorgeous view along our route.

Yet another gorgeous view along our route.

Yup, more stairs.

Yup, more stairs.

View over the edge - ya shoulda' been there - the photo isn't adequate - the colors were amazing.

View over the edge – ya shoulda’ been there – the photo isn’t adequate – the colors were amazing.

More incredible beauty.

More incredible beauty.

Cathy's feet are sufficient without footwear for this terrain - she is loving this hike!

Cathy’s feet are sufficient without footwear for this terrain – she is loving this hike!

The crew consulting the map - T, Cathy, S. I just go where they tell me to. It's a relief to give up the lead for a while, students!!

The crew consulting the map – T, Cathy, S. I just go where they tell me to. It’s a relief to give up the lead for a while, students!!

A new candidate for our Infamous Hall of Feet: S's In The Surf.

A new candidate for our Infamous Hall of Feet: S’s In The Surf.

Oh oh!!! Debi and S FLUNK the sufficient footwear requirements! Whenever someone official looking passes by we hide our feet in the bushes!

Oh oh!!! Debi and S FLUNK the sufficient footwear requirements! Whenever someone official looking passes by we hide our feet in the bushes!

T passes the sufficient footwear test with flying colors. Goody-two-shoes!!

T passes the sufficient footwear test with flying colors. Goody-two-shoes!!

S tried to pass the sufficient footwear test, but she got a flat tire!! The sole of her shoe disconnected from the rest of it. Luckily, Cathy was prepared - that little Girl Scout - she had her blue art tape with her and she fixed S's shoe right up!!

S tried to pass the sufficient footwear test, but she got a flat tire!! The sole of her shoe disconnected from the rest of it. Luckily, Cathy was prepared – that little Girl Scout – she had her blue art tape with her and she fixed S’s shoe right up!!

Keep On Truckin'!

Keep On Truckin’!

We couldn't let the day go by without an art break! All three of us are doing a quick bit of art work.

We couldn’t let the day go by without an art break! All three of us are doing a quick bit of art work.

It's hard to tell in this photo, but these feet, in both sufficient (Cathy) and insufficient (Debi) footwear, are dangling over a cliff of a quite considerable distance. We take risks for our art!!!

It’s hard to tell in this photo, but these feet, in both sufficient (Cathy) and insufficient (Debi) footwear, are dangling over a cliff of a quite considerable distance. We take risks for our art!!!

Looking over Cathy's shoulder as she works.

Looking over Cathy’s shoulder as she works.

View over Debi's shoulder while she works.

View over Debi’s shoulder while she works.

Cathy working...and a good view of where we were perched.

Cathy working…and a good view of where we were perched.

Our view from our art making perch - inspiring, yes?

Our view from our art making perch – inspiring, yes?

Cathy's work.

Cathy’s work.

Debi's work. Both of us were done in about 6 minutes.

Debi’s work. Both of us were done in about 6 minutes.

Heading back to the Batmobile.

Heading back to the Batmobile.

Almost there. By the way, we have no idea who the shirtless guy is - he just popped into the picture as I snapped it.

Almost there. By the way, we have no idea who the shirtless guy is – he just popped into the picture as I snapped it.

Dealing with insufficient footwear. S had to drive home barefoot. I don't know if you can tell in the photo, but a cloud of sand is heading our way. The wind suddenly became so fierce that I had to put the camera away and hold onto my hat with two hands and squint my eyes in order to get back to the car. I had sand in everything, hair, pockets, you name it. But we made it.

Dealing with insufficient footwear. S had to drive home barefoot. I don’t know if you can tell in the photo, but a cloud of sand is heading our way. The wind suddenly became so fierce that I had to put the camera away and hold onto my hat with two hands and squint my eyes in order to get back to the car. I had sand in everything, hair, pockets, you name it. But we made it.

Wednesday, Sept. 18: Evening Art Outing: First "Studio." Debi sketching.

Wednesday, Sept. 18: Evening Art Outing: First “Studio.” Debi sketching.

Wednesday, Sept. 18: Evening Art Outing: First "Studio." Cathy sketching.

Wednesday, Sept. 18: Evening Art Outing: First “Studio.” Cathy sketching.

Fountain that we sketched.

Fountain that we sketched.

Debi's sketch.

Debi’s sketch.

Cathy's sketch.

Cathy’s sketch.

Wednesday, Sept. 18: Evening Art Outing: Second Studio. Cathy working hard!

Wednesday, Sept. 18: Evening Art Outing: Second Studio. Cathy working hard!

Wednesday, Sept. 18: Evening Art Outing: Second "Studio." Debi getting inspired!

Wednesday, Sept. 18: Evening Art Outing: Second “Studio.” Debi getting inspired!

Cathy getting inspired!!!!

Cathy getting inspired!!!!

Inspiration kicks in!

Inspiration kicks in!

Feet at work in Studio Two.

Feet at work in Studio Two.

Debi's collage.

Debi’s collage.

Debi's Caran d'Ache. Cathy said, "Give it a try." So I did.

Debi’s Caran d’Ache. Cathy said, “Give it a try.” So I did.

Cathy's Caran d'Ache. Beautiful, as always.

Cathy’s Caran d’Ache. Beautiful, as always.

Martha
September 28th, 2013 at 3:11 am

I’ve been spending so much time catching up on your blog that I haven’t finished unpacking my stuff from our trip! It is like an addictive travelogue magazine, only I know the participants, and that makes it really special. Thanks for all the work!

Valerye
September 24th, 2013 at 9:03 pm

I’d like to say that I’m following your blog religiously, but……this is actually the first time I’ve looked at it. I’ve been, however….and I expect credit for this: thinking about you and wondering how your trip is going. So it’s not quite ‘out of sight, out of mind’…
happy travelin’

ciao

Eileen Schaubert
September 21st, 2013 at 3:25 pm

I’m enjoying your blog – you do a great job! The views on your walks are outstanding.

Laura
September 21st, 2013 at 2:32 pm

Of course you know I’m eagerly reading every blog! I do have a question. What is Caran d’Ache? Is it pencils, crayons? Cathy (and you!) have made such beautiful drawings with it. What paper do you work on?

September 22nd, 2013 at 8:44 am

Caran d’ache is actually the manufacture’s name. A Swiss company that makes expensive pens and pencils as well as art supplies. What we are using are water-soluble wax pastels, “Neocolor II”. I have always purchased them individually at Jerry’s but they do come as sets online. Use whatever kind of paper you choose. If you are using lots of water, watercolor paper is best, but I tend to leave them rather opaque in which case drawing paper works fine. Cathy

Laura
September 22nd, 2013 at 11:35 am

Thanks Cathy!

Diane
September 20th, 2013 at 11:39 pm

I am also here and reading, although I usually miss a few days and then have several days’ worth to read. I’m exhausted just reading everything you’ve done so far!! I can’t imagine how beautiful the views are in person; they look beautiful on my computer and make me yearn to be there. Thank you so much for taking the time to share all of this with your faithful followers! (you honestly think that I believe you didn’t see that shirtless guy???) The more of your art that I see, the harder it is for me to decide what I want to work on when I get there.

Vicki
September 19th, 2013 at 11:45 pm

I wouldn’t miss a moment of the “footage” being released during this adventure. How old are you guys again – 40???? Really admire your grit….(you may never get it out of your pockets). Sounds like the couple you are sharing the time with are great fun. How lucky to be with folks whose company you so enjoy. I have been craving far to much cheese and wine since follow this blog!

Sharon
September 19th, 2013 at 9:53 pm

I’m reading your blog – and really enjoying hearing about your daily adventures. It’ll be nice to see you again when you come home in November – but I’ll miss the blog!

Carl Oman
September 19th, 2013 at 12:49 pm

I”m a faithful follower of the blog. Reading the stories and viewing the photos help bring you and France a little bit closer. I’m also your biggest fan (No surprise there huh?)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Debi Pendell Artist by debipendell.com