Sigh of Relief in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence

Les Baux from Domaine Ste. Berthe
The hilltop village of Les Baux overlooks the fall vines at Domaine Ste. Berthe.

Grateful we are for President Macron’s message last night: Overall, it appears the number of new confirmed Covid cases is going down in France. This is encouraging news as it means this second lockdown we’re in—le confinement redeux—is working.

A farm we pass on our one-kilometer walk.

Restrictions will be eased in three stages. Beginning on Saturday, it will be possible to engage in physical activity up to 20 km from home and for 3 hours. (For the past month, the limit has been one km for one hour; the official form called an attestation will still be required.) Starting 15 December, folks will be able to navigate between regions for the holidays. (The 9 pm to 7 am curfew will remain in force except on 24 and 31 December.) If, by 20 January, the new infections are under 5,000 per day, restaurants and bars will be able to reopen. Masks are obligatory in town, and with very rare exceptions, everyone I’ve seen complies.

A Camargue cowboy leads a pony trek through the marshes.

The day before the latest lockdown, which started on Friday, 30 October, we took advantage of our freedom and the sunny weather to go to the Camargue. To be at the Med and feel the fresh sea air was exhilarating. Not surprisingly, we weren’t alone. But in the vast open spaces around Saintes-Maires-de-Mer, there was plenty of space for plenty of folks who were taking pony rides, strolling, windsurfing, bike-riding, picnicking and birdwatching, of course.

Fabulous flamingos feast at a large pond near the beach.
Kite surfers fly high at Saintes-Maries-de-Mer.

Knowing that in a few days some important libertés will be increased, we’ll have one more thing to be thankful for tomorrow, Thanksgiving, for Americans. It’s not a holiday here, and turkeys aren’t readily available until closer to Christmas, but we’ll roast a fat chicken and pretend it’s a gobbler.

It may look like a water treatment unit, but to little egrets, it’s a buffet.

But we won’t need to fake gratitude for many things–most importantly our health and well-being. Holding tight to optimism, we look forward to a brighter future across the globe.

Mr. Ed, who lives around the corner, licks his lips as I relate our Thanksgiving menu.

Happy “giving thanks” to all, wherever you are.

Stay safe, well and hopeful.

Bises, Gayle

PS The Birdwatcher’s Wife is with the editor now. She’ll work her magic over the next month, and then it’s back to me. I’ll do the same for another month and then back to her. I don’t know when it will see the light of day, but it’s getting there!

A vibrant berry bush with morning glories mixed in reminds us to be hopeful.

One thought on “Sigh of Relief in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence

  1. Hi Gayle — I just saw the article in French Word-a-Day for Passion for Provence. YAAAY!!!! Now I’m wondering how your new draft of Birdwatcher’s Wife is coming along? Can’t wait to read it.] Comments on your post to follow. Katherine

    On Wed, Nov 25, 2020 at 7:48 AM Gayle Smith Padgett wrote:

    > gaylesmithpadgett posted: ” The hilltop village of Les Baux overlooks the > fall vines at Domaine Ste. Berthe. Grateful we are for President Macron’s > message last night: Overall, it appears the number of new confirmed Covid > cases is going down in France. This is encouraging news a” >

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