Photos and Text by Emily Benson-Scott
Coming from NYC, a city that never sleeps, it’s odd to wake up to a medeival village that seems perpetually asleep. I love leaving my apartment in the morning to greet the cool stone embrace of Moustiers Sainte-Marie, and to be engulfed in a sleepy silence punctuated only by the somber chimes of the bell tower, the ancient drip of fountains that still remain from the 10th century, and the heedless rush of the waterfall, an essential artery of the village.
The only thing reminiscent of New York is that like NYC, we are experiencing our own restaurant week. My mom and our dear family friend Andrea have just spoiled us rotten for five consecutive nights eating out at one gourmet restaurant after the next. We have seen lavendar, taken a dip in Gorge Du Verdon, shopped at local markets and taken great delight in spending time together.
Gorge du Verdon
Yesterday we dropped them off at the nearest train in Saint Raphael, which they took to Roquebrune to stay for a few days in our petit maison. Afterwards we drove back across the Provençal countryside admiring lanky cypruses lording over the landscape like pastoral skyscrapers. Only unlike in New York City, everything in Provence is on a much more human scale. In New York, man made things are larger than life, but in Provence, people are larger than life, and inextricable from the natural environment. When I asked the woman who sells bread and pastries amidst an indimdating throng of bees that frequent the boulangerie whether she wasn’t afraid of being stung, she responded that they only sting when they are nervous and that nobody is nervous in Provence.