“You play the stage created by your thoughts.” – Dr. Kirby Surprise
We pulled up to the vineyard, and a beautiful Great Dane greeted us and gave some good barks alerting Julien that we had arrived.
Julien came out from around the corner. Cedric and him started speaking in French and gave each other the ever famous bisous. I was introduced to Julien, and he gave me a half hug and two kisses on the cheek as well. So French. Julien was a little darker, resembling more Mediterranean genes. He had a beard and was sipping a glass of Pastis. He invited us to sit down at a small table in the courtyard. I would have guessed he had Italian ancestry. I was handed a glass of Pastis, and oysters were brought out with lemon wedges. Oh goodness. My favorite. Was this really happening…eating oysters, on a vineyard in Pomerol with two French men in their 30’s? When I signed up for wine school in Paris, I knew amazing experiences were awaiting me, but could not have anticipated this! It did not stop with oysters. Next thing I knew, duck pan-seared and sliced into medallions was being presenting. Cedric had brought along a bottle of Saint Julien Merlot and it paired beautifully with the duck. We spent the afternoon drinking and eating and talking about life. Life in America, life in Bordeaux, and life in Paris. Julien spoke fluent English as he had studied abroad in Australia. I couldn’t help but feel special with these two French gentlemen showing me a good time and feeding me well. It was a perfect Saturday. After lunch we toured the vineyard and spoke a little about wine and harvest. Cedric then invited Julien to come with us for the evening and continue our lazy Saturday with the addition of Claire, his wife, and move locations. Julien agreed and said he would stop by later. I was anticipating meeting Claire.
Julien walked us to the car, and as we were walking, he touched the small of my back to lead me to the car. It was a subtle move, but I felt an instant difference. He looked at me and smiled. It was basically understood that at this point he was interested in me. He was only coming to Claire and Cedric’s home this evening for the sheer reason of spending a little more time with me. I was flattered by this sudden realization, but also I instantly thought of Eddie. I was technically still in love with another man. Julien was attractive, yes, and French. But my mind hadn’t even gone there, until this moment, when I felt this delicate flirtation. I decided to just shift my thoughts and not overthink something that hadn’t happened yet.
We arrived at Cedric’s home and immediately Claire came to greet me. She was beautiful, and extremely thin. She had tanned skin and a short typical French bob haircut. She was wearing khaki colored slacks and a peach blouse. She was downright stunning with almost zero make-up, maybe a slight dash of mascara and lip-gloss. She welcomed me and pointed out the French/English dictionary that she said we would be using throughout the evening. Claire was fluent in English, and barely had an accent, which was not archetypal. Claire announced she was going to make pasta with tomato sauce and we would have some charcuterie as well. It was not surprising at this point that the immediate subject turned to food in a French home. Claire and I got to talking as she started on dinner, Cedric took a shower, and Julien would be there any minute.
“So, what do you think of French men?” Claire asked me with a smirk.
“Well I have only been in France less than a month, so I haven’t had much experience yet.” I responded with inquisition.
“Well, look out. American woman are very appealing to the French man.” Claire’s accent was adorable. Her English was perfect grammatically, but her pronunciation had French written all over it. I found this so charming. I felt that she was giving me a small warning regarding Julien coming over tonight. I instantly felt a little nervous.
Julien arrived. He was wearing a cream colored sweater, dark jeans and loafers. His tanned skin looked great against the coloring of his clothes. He seemed very put together for a winemaker in the countryside. Everyone exchanged bisous, and I could tell instantly that Claire and him had a brother and sister banter. Claire made a joke that he was GQ and he fired back that he was sorry she was jealous that he always looked better than her.
Can’t wait to read more about this !