Before we met with Claude for the first time in Nice, Mike turned to me and promised that he would be on his best behavior, but he couldn’t speak for the hawk. He was the only farmer in the valley with a mohawk and his favorite saying is “You can’t tame it, you can’t tame a hawk.” In French, his favorite topic is something to do with rabbit’s milk cheese. On the first day at lunch he mentioned it to Margarite and Claude. Do you milk the rabbits, he asked. I think they thought he was more city than they could handle until they realized he was joking. A week later, when Margarite looked puzzled with another of his comments, Claude said to her, don’t you know he could be joking at any time.
This blog is a funny thing. It captures bits and pieces of our day that make us think or change, but the majority of our time is spent on things far less serious. Today, we walked around and sat in a hotel. What do you write about on a day that you sit in a hotel? We usually don’t write anything about that.
At the farm, there were a lot of animals to play with. There was a goat that would butt your knee whenever you went in to the pen. I would find excuses to go in so he would play with my knee. Another kid would always jump up and try to eat my sweatshirt. It was cute. I spent a lot of time with goats on or at me.
There was one night when we were out taking night photography in Margaret’s garden. We saw that a rabbit had escaped, but was hanging around the pen because he wanted to be with his friends, but still wanted freedom to roam in the garden. When we told Margarite, she insisted that we spend about an hour chasing the rabbit around, trying to get him back in the pen. Four people trying to herd a rabbit is not enough BTW. We had to try again later and still failed. The rabbit finally chose to go back in on its own.
There is a guy, Marciel, who we were never able to fit into any of the stories about the farm. He was the guy who lived next door and worked for them. He wore a Chicago hat everyday and I think he must have had a stash of beer in the back of Margarite’s kitchen because he would walk in and grab one every evening. He would stand in the kitchen and talk so unfiltered with her. He would get really animated with her and Claude and use words like “Putain” in regular conversation, which translated means “whore.” I am still not sure what the conversations were about.
And then there is all the time we spend riding. Everyday we are not working, we go for a long ride. If our trip was a pie graph, 40% would probably be riding. There’s never much to say about it. It’s always beautiful and always fun, but it’s more of a picture than a post. Or in our case 4,560 pictures. It has gotten to the point where we’ll see a beautiful hill town or an ancient cemetery or some cows roaming free on the road and we won’t even stop. A dime a dozen!
We spend an unusually large amount of time talking about, or if we are stopped, talking to animals. There are so many here and they are still fun to see. There are so many dogs, just running along the road, miles from any town. So many sheep grazing sometimes in front of you and so many cows and horses that just look at you.
And of course we talk about the blog a lot. We read and edit each others posts and make comments. We write almost every night in some capacity. It got out of hand one night in Nice when I had to lie to one of the Austrian girls. I told her that we were going home to have sex, so I didn’t have to nerd out and tell her that we were actually going home early to edit a post.
Oh and then there are the internet cafes. We spend about an hour in a cafe each day uploading things and doing whatever. When we were staying in Sartene, going to the internet required driving to the next town where we would always go to the same bar. The guy who works there got so familiar with Mike that he gave him his email address and phone number without Mike even asking. He’d give us free drinks too, since we are in there everyday.
I don’t know what this post is about. But, I do know that sometimes this blog gets thick and when I read back through, it doesn’t capture the times when life is just going. I think this trip is one of the most interesting we’ve ever taken, but I just wanted to talk a little about the normal life between the posts.