Meanwhile we drove to Troyes (pronounced Trwah) this afternoon. Troyes is a large thriving modern city on the Seine with shopping galore, built around the remains of a 16th century town. The old town consists of half-timbered houses leaning this way and that with narrow passageways between. It seems nothing is straight in the old town. But Troye's history goes way farther than the 16th century; it goes back to Roman days. It was a center of commerce in Medieval times. Joan of Arc reclaimed Troyes from England in 1429. You'll have to read about this incredible place yourself because I can't begin to even comprehend it: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Troyes
We visited the 12th century Cathedral of St. Madeliene, with it's brilliant colorful stained glass windows telling the stories of the Bible, and it's Garden of the Innocents -- all flowers white in honor of the infants who died before being christened. The interior walls of the church were originally painted vivid colors, as were all the gothic churches, as I understand it, but were whitewashed in the 17th century. They remain white today.
We shopped a little, I bought a tin containing 32 chocolates for my 9 year old grandson Victor. It now has 31. If they're all semi-sweet like the one I just ate, I might have to empty the entire tin for him since most children do not like semi-sweet chocolate. I'd better go test another piece to make sure. I can always fill it instead with pretty little rocks from France.
We got home around 8:30; dinner was finished around 11:30. Again. We keep pretty late hours here. At dinner, in the midst of stimulating conversation about Napoleon and Marie Antoinette and Louis XVI, XVII and XVIII, Jerome leaned over and said to me, "I have gotten some really stinky cheese for you." I can't wait.
We've got a heckuvalot of unfinished work hanging in the studio. We will have a Vernissage, a private showing, on Saturday. Invited guests will come to see what we've done. There will be champagne and munchies, and a dinner afterwards. So some of us are feeling a little anxious about finishing up some pieces. Kippy has a couple of outings prepared for those who feel comfortable leaving the studio. Tomorrow, half will stay in the studio, half will go to Reims. I will probably go to Reims because I detect that those who are staying would like to be rid of me.