How A Child Sees Provence

Published June 9, 2017

Children interest themselves in the smallest things, things we might think of as mundane. And then they, inevitably, add their imagination. Like in the case of the blue apple.
Recently a student of mine wrote a French Présentation about his visit to Uzès, a small village in Provence. He remembered stained glass windows, paper-wrapped sunflowers, and lots of amazing apples. He imagined himself being an apple farmer at the local farmer’s marché. He had rouge et rose apples with blush on the cheeks, lemon-yellow jaune citron apples with a citrusy perfume, and his speciality was the royal blue apple – une pomme bleue royale.
Which made me think of French kings with their velvet cloaks and the golden fleur de lis.
My student imagined a secret recipe for growing this blue apple. Which reminded me of French kings with secrets. Sounds familiar?
My student imagined building an apple-wood carousel for his fellow farmers to ride on. Can you imagine?!
This is the Provence I want to visit again, the one I wrote about in Puss in Boots in Provence. Because when I visited it in my twenties, I was not looking through the eyes of a child.

I need to go back and find that pomme bleue royale and the carousel on which the farmers ride and wave, as I bicycle by.