ha. I can’t stop giggling when I read that title. It’s like I’m making a Jess and Julia story come to life… But sadly, I’m not. I haven’t cooked a dern thing since being in France. I’ve eaten a lot of amazingness including a variety of duck parts in a variety of dishes, but the extent of my cooking has been to slice up some goat cheese for lunch or add hot water to my instant coffee for my ‘breakfast’ or gesture wildly and apologize profusely that I know no French but that I would indeed like that plate of food that is over at the table right there. Yes that one. Sorry, I can’t answer any follow up questions. What size? No idea. Sorry, sorry.  Oh, go back and sit down and you’ll bring the buffoon her lunch? Thank you, kind French lady who has no time for the likes of me. I will do that. 

But I digress. I named this post as such because I am living in France for a few weeks. I’ve left the island of São Miguel, Portugal; flown to Lisbon, Portugal; flown to Barcelona, Spain; had dinner with an old next door neighbor I hadn’t seen in… wait for it… 11 years(!!!); stayed the night in that incredible city; taken the train to Narbone, France; taken the train to Toulouse, France; taken the train to Auch, France; taken the bus to Nogaro,France and finally, I got in a car and rode out to my first home (in Sarragachies, France)  that will host me for 8 days. 

Oof. Da. 

As those of you who follow me on Instagram (@chocomooseimages) know, I was exhausted both emotionally and physically even just 1/2 way through!! But after a few pretty low key days filled with fantastic food and conversations, incredible hospitality, a bed that hugs me like a bear and work that is so chill I feel live I’ve simply spent 7.5 hours listening to a book, I’m feeling better and decently ready to tackle the world again. Though I’m also pleased to say I don’t have to for another nearly 3 weeks. 

[thats my happy face]

[its also my “I’m really cold but I’m trying to not look it and instead will embrace the sunshine and the fact that I’m in France despite knowing it’s nearly 20*F warmer in Minnesota right now.” face]

Ok just one more side note to my above side note as I’m sure I got some eye rolls for my complaint right there… I know. I’m in France. But there is no heat here. Why I keep picking places in the world where heat is not a thing during their colder or wetter months, I will never understand. I am staying in the most incredible house for a history nerd – it’s from the 1600s and is absolutely amazing to think of all the life that has gone on in this home. To think of the family that built it. To think of the meals cooked, the babies born, the books read, the parties thrown… It’s beyond moving. Buuuuuut there is also noooo heat. And they didn’t build homes air tight in the 1600s nor does it seem previous families did that after the fact. I have yet to find a window that actually seals shut. But oh.my.goodness! The windows and doors! They are all single panes and I’ve learned that a way to tell how old they are is to check the thickness from top to bottom, because they struggled to make it equal way back ages ago. The more variance the older it is. Pretty cool I get to even look at something for those details!!! However, it’s also beyond comfortably cold for this gal who is used to a bazillions layers once things get chilly. If only I didn’t have to pack for 3 months of varying temps AND carry it all on my back. Then I would be less whiney as I wear 3 pairs of pants and 7 tops plus a blanket, which I wear as a skirt/toga on top of it all… I am quite a sight in the winter. 

So when the sun came out today, I decided I needed to make the most of it and do some proper wandering! I am living near a village called Sarragachies which, I learned today, includes 2 churches, a town center, a bull ‘fighting’ arena, a handful of cats that don’t speak English and a handful of amazingly old homes. 

This church ^^ was built in the 12th century. The TWELFTH century!!! I’m geeking out here!!! And I didn’t even know this stuff existed! I’m a little terrified by the impending excitement that will explode from me when I see some of the paintings, frescoes, architecture and sculptures that I learned about and fell in love with back in college. There will likely be some squeals. And hopefully I’m not so dumbfounded that I forget to take a few photos here and there. 

Well, as the clock has just struck midnight, I’m noticing my eyelids are getting heavy. Tomorrow is another work day and while I have no idea what I am doing, I’m pretty excited. And at the end of my work day I suspect I get to enjoy another amazing home cooked meal. Life is not too shabby these days.