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Last Days of Summer

The last days of summer. Everyone seems to have left. The rentrée is upon us, the shops full of school satchels and pens. My son has bought himself a new French agenda, diary, out of habit, though now he will be going to an English school. The difference will be interesting. I am sure.

But truly this is the best time of the year in the Pyrenees, end of August beginning of September. A golden time. Grapes ripening, Haystacks in the fields. People chopping logs. Mostly the air is still, the sun warm and you can still swim. We don’t have a pool- and I realised after many years at Corbiac how glad I was since I would have spent most of my time supervising other people’s children. What a responsibility. Not to mention the cleaning. (Oh for a pool boy!) But I love swimming. I have been very fortunate to be able to stay in my friend Martha’s house while ours was being renovated, and she has installed a swimming pond, with water-lilies, surrounded by plants and trees. It is a sublime place to swim, incredibly tranquil, a green swim. But I love to swim in the sea too, a blue swim, a swim for pure pleasure. I like to lie in the waves, to be massaged by the sea. There is also an excellent pool in Prades, nice and big for proper long exercise swims. Sadly it closes at the end of this week, la rentrée again, though there are weeks more of sun, warm enough to swim outside.

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