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Lavender Scented Memories

Kathy Dixon

Let me tell you about a perfect day - one that nearly didn’t happen.

It was almost exactly 10 years ago - June 2009. We took a trip to France to stay with the family of our exchange student from the previous summer. In many ways it was the most beautiful trip! And in many ways it was a terrible trip. It was in the midst of a time we were struggling with mental health issues in the family and there was a severe lack of knowledge, exhaustion, and short tempers. On one afternoon we were driving from southern France and the Mediterranean Sea back to our hosts’ home in the French Alps passing numerous vineyards along the way. But then something different caught our eye - a field of lavender! We were able to pull over and I hoped out of the car to take some photos of the field.

 

After taking some photos, we saw some buildings on top of a small hill. The buildings and surrounding walls were built from yellowish stone and looked delightful! We followed a signpost directing us to Le Poet-Laval and drove up the hill to the medieval village. It was unbelievably beautiful! And there were only a handful of tourists - so we wandered this village (now an artists’ colony) at our leisure.

 

This small, unexpected side trip turned out to be my favorite moment of our vacation - it felt like I had stepped into the past (there were no cars allowed in the village - because the “streets” are only wide enough for pedestrians- and possibly - one mild mannered horse.

 

So, when we chose National Wine Day as one of the holidays to celebrate with our Faux Holidays Club - my mind went like this: Wine -> France -> Le Poet Laval -> Fields of Lavender! And that is how National Wine Day turned into a celebration of lavender.


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