10 January 2010

Homesick for a Foreign Country

Saturday was a magical day here, cold but full of small gifts. Sunshine and blue sky, the purchase of herbs at a winter farm market, a downy woodpecker in my cedar tree, a trio of pottery pieces at bargain prices at the antique shop, and a surprise gift in the mail.

Sunday was a day of dull gray sky and dissatisfaction. I found myself turning to photos of sunshine and southern France in my iPhoto files. I felt almost a physical craving to be there. Can you become homesick for a foreign country?

The photo above was taken on a sunny day in Caillac, on the north bank of the meandering Lot River. Isn't that a tidy looking building? Apparently is is a clinic for people with drinking problems.

I have long loved the sight of sun warming old red bricks. So of course I loved the sight of sun on terra cotta tiles along the road to Caillac. I would like to be those tiles, caressed by sun of the Midi-Pyrenees. It's not only cold here, but it just started to snow.


I recall being content making salad dressing for our Sunday dinner. We spent the entire day lolling around the pool and patio, knowing we had two full weeks to explore the Lot Valley. Our dinner was chicken cooked with vegetables and wine wine of some sort. It was such a warm and pleasant day, much like the days of our first visit a few springs ago.

In winter I open the blinds early, light candles against the darkness and count the days until spring. The wait is a long one in Northern Wisconsin, and journeys through sunny photographs ease my mind and also fill me with discontent.

20 comments:

Bella said...

Odd though it may seem, I do indeed think it is possible to be homesick for a foreign country. I long for places I have visited some days when reality is not quite what I had in mind. I love your photos. Even the clinics are prettier in France!

Martha said...

I long for England -- the cottages, the cream teas, the village life. Sigh!

Mimi from French Kitchen said...

Ah, yes, Bella, that must be it for me: Reality is hard to swallow in January.

Oh, Martha, that all sounds lovely. We hope to get to Devon and Cornwall to visit my husband's roots. Clotted cream, anyone?

Anonymous said...

I definitely get homesick for France, especially for the Lot Valley and Nerac. Actually my French pen friend for the first time in Villeneuve sur Lot last summer on Bastille day. We talk on Skype with video link, not the same as being there though.

Anonymous said...

Sorry the last one was from me Anne and we are snowed under in England at the moment
Anne

Mimi from French Kitchen said...

I just love that area, Anne.

I would be hard pressed to pick a favorite place in the Lot.

Familel Gerdel said...

Real nice photos of France!

Mimi from French Kitchen said...

Thank you, Anne, wait until you see the photos from our trip up the mountains above the Lot!

Mochene said...

It's entirely possible because I'm homesick for Paris! Unfortunately I can't go for vacation this year, so I'm left with tours on tv, photos from the past two years, and blogs. Sigh. It's funny how out of the blue a memory will hit you and you're there instantly before you remember where you actually are.

Here's to hoping the US dollar recovers so that we all can resume our travels.

Toni said...

I can definitely get an ache in my heart for certain places - Paris is a given, as well as Provence. It's just saner there, I think...

Mimi from French Kitchen said...

Oh, Mochene, I am watching the dollar like crazy!

Saner, yes, Toni, I would agree.

Terry B, Blue Kitchen said...

I understand your feelings, Mimi. For me, the "foreign country" that induces major pangs of homesickness, even though I've never lived there, is New York City. I feel so connected and at home when I'm there that I sometimes suspect I was born there, then kidnapped as an infant and raised by wolves in the Midwest.

Jann said...

Yes, I believe many of us long to revisit a place or even a country where so many wonderful memories were conceived. I think it's really healthy to day-dream a bit and reminiss about the good times....And wait for them to occur again! Darn that Euro~or Dollar.....

Mimi from French Kitchen said...

TerryB, I wonder if that could be the case...it sure makes for one of those great stories you swear by!

Jann, isn't that the truth! We watch the dollar like hawks here.

Famille Gerdel said...

Hi Mimi!

What's new for you? I'm waiting for the next photos of France. I like it.

Anne

Mimi from French Kitchen said...

I have lots more to post, Anne.

And if all goes well, we may go over again in the fall. That darned exchange rate is not so favorable...

katiez said...

I call that being 'farsick'. I am often farsick for Ireland.... and Spain.... And Andorra.... And Paris.
Actually, always Paris, even though it's close it's still far away.

Medifast Coupons said...

Getting homesick at times happen to those in a foreign land. It is natural for us to miss our home and our ways.

www.palencia-3d.com said...

Pretty worthwhile piece of writing, much thanks for the post.

Olga said...

It's funny -- for vacation a few years ago, I visited France, and I constantly long for Nice. As I have been homesick before, I'm quite familiar with the feeling, and I know that's what I feel for Nice, even though I'm from there. When googling homesickness for a foreign country, this site was the first result. It seema everyone adores the south of France <3