Welcome to Europe

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We’re heading into our second week in Europe, and the first week has been so full of sights and stories and amazing food I hardly know which adventures to recount.  Anny has been a great friend and hostess, her door always open, both metaphorically and literally, because in Normandy during the summer windows and doors and shutters are open so there’s no barrier between the outside and the inside.  A stream runs through Anny’s yard with a hearty gurgling, and our last night there we slept with the windows and shutters open, even though it was cool.  We wanted to be able to listen to the water talk.

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A Garden Corner

I’ve been running a lot (marathon training is moving right along), gardening (Anny has extensive and wildly imaginative gardens at her home and it’s been so satisfying and fun to be part of her living creation), eating (so many outrageously excellent meals and so many chunks of crusty baguette slathered with local butter or creamy cheese), and wishing, yet again, that I’d taken my intention to become more fluent in French (because I’m about 0.5 on a 1 – 10 scale for fluency) seriously and maybe after this trip I will.

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Panoramic Normandy

Yesterday we took a train from Lisieux to Paris and this afternoon we leave for Amsterdam.  It was raining hard yesterday as we walked through Paris but that didn’t keep us from appreciating what a beautiful city it is.

A few more photos from our wonderful week.

 

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About Grace Mattern

Grace Mattern is a poet, writer, mother, grandmother, partner, friend, family member, gardener, triathlete, hiker and for 30 years was the Executive Director of the NH Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence. She resigned her position at the Coalition on June 15, 2011 in order to concentrate on her writing, while continuing to engage in the movement to end violence against women as a consultant and advisor. Her chapbook Fever of Unknown Origin was published in 2001 and her full-length poetry book The Truth About Death was published in 2012.
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