Thursday, November 13, 2008

Hello Soldier

For his two week leave from Iraq, Jeremy came to France to visit yours truly. It was so fantastic. When we weren't hanging out at my apartment watching the Colbert Report online, we were wandering around Poitiers, eating the best meals ever, trying new and extraordinary chocolates and pastries, and traveling elsewhere. One of the highlights of Jeremy's visit was our trip to Bordeaux. The first evening we were there we visited the Cathedral of St. André. It was huge and gothic. My favorite. Here is a picutre of the cathedral in the twlight:



We signed up for two tours with Bordeaux's office of tourism. The first was an afternoon trip to a vineyard with wine tasting, followed by a visit to the medieval city of St. Emilion, the town one of France's most famous wines is named for. Here we are standing amongst the grapes at Château Larmande:



Wine tasting in the cellar of Château Larmande:



Serious picture faces on top of the tower over-looking the city of St. Emilion:



Overjoyed picture faces on top of the tower over-looking the city of St. Emilion:



Jeremy being "hilarious" on top of the tower over-looking the city of St. Emilion:



Jeremy climbing on parts of the tower he definitely shouldn't have been climbing on (it was my fault. I told him he wouldn't be able to get up there):



View of St. Emilion and the surrounding vineyards from the top of the tower:



It was wonderful.

The next day we had our wine and cheese class in the late afternoon. Before our class, we wandered around Bordeaux, ate lunch, and made some necessary chocolate purchases. I had a cold (one of us is always sick when we're together) and was feeling pretty bad at this point, so we found a tea salon to hang out in for a couple of hours before our class. Here are the best chocolates we discoverd in Bordeaux:



The mushroom is filled with caramel,and the bogue, or as Jeremy called it the beholder, is filled with different sorts of chocolate, chestnut paste, and almond paste. Nom nom nom. Here we are displaying our chocolates (although I realize you can't see the chocolates because I'm bad at the one-handed picture taking thing. Our beautiful faces should be enough for you):



Then we went to our wine and cheese class. It was awesome. Jeremy and I agreed that the tour from the previous day, and the wine and cheese class complemented each other well. While the tour had tought us about the production of wine, the class taught us about wine-tasting. We learned how to analyze the age of the wine by looking at its color, and how to properly smell and taste it in order to determine all of its flavors. We tasted three wines (and the portions were quite generous), and then we were invited to take what we wanted from the cheese cellar. Heavenly. Here is our wine and cheese class. Jeremy and I are all the way in the back:



In addition to Bordeaux, we also made some little day trips, including a visit to a seventh century fortified abbey in the town of Nouaillé Maupertuis (very close to Poitiers) and the coastal town of La Rochelle. La Rochelle also happens to be the town where Grand-père left for America in 1946, when he was 19. So I thought a lot about how it would feel to be in La Rochelle as a 19-year-old about to permanently leave his country. Very strange. Here is Jeremy on top of one of La Rochelle's towers. He is very confused by the sign telling him he should not be standing on the thing he's standing on:



Now some pics in Poitiers. We like playgrounds:



And overpriced tequila sunrises:



And the mandatory "Jeremy-standing-on-a-tree" shot:



Jeremy went back to Iraq last week, and I miss him so much. My apartment is so lonely without him. I want him to come back. Right now. But hopefully he'll be able to make another visit once he gets out of Iraq in March. And for his next visit, we're doing Paris.

5 comments:

jess rowan said...

OH MY GOD.

Thank you for posting these! And good job...he's not an easy photo target :)

Also, I took pretty much that exact tree-standing photo of Jer in the redwoods a few years ago. He can't resist a good tree shot.

Love you!

Anonymous said...

Oh, yum...great photos of the chocolate and, oh, of course, Jeremy, too. Love the picture of the two of you together in the vinyard. Trip looks marvelous! And the cheese...so much to love.
Skunked in Salem

Elena said...

Oh too cute!!! Love the rooftop photo series. And your title, "Hello Solider," cracks me up! Hahaha. You little temptress.

Richard Dearborn said...

Rick here!!

You did it! These are great pictures. You can physically see him get more comfortable with getting his picture taken. it's great, muahaha.

So awesome. I could tell he was really happy whenever I talked to him while he was there. Can't wait to see you two back in the states in...well, a long while.. but it WILL happen. <3

-Rick

Lilly said...

i am so jealous that you have constand access to cheese. do you know they don't sell cheese really in Japan? I miss it more than almost anything else - except of course you and all the people I know and love.