It was the first day of the NORMANDY tour and I was of course tired…….three days in PARIS,blisters under my BIG Toes from DAY ONE,jet lag and the early start to zip up to Normandy and not be late!Needless, to say I did not sleep well……..
So,Sharon picks us up at the train station and we start the day at JACQUES………..to most a pure JUNK STORE.To me memories of ITALY!I would search these places out 23 years ago in the land of the TUSCANS.You see in those day GARAGE SALES were illegal in ITALY.No one did that!Except me!Consignment stores and thrift shops did not exist either……….but this kind of shop did.
IT was HEAVEN to me.Me the only one in the group who was not going to make a purchase!This was the first stop. Less then five minutes in I was holding three watering cans……child size but still……..REALLY??I put one back!Big of me.That left room for the iron keys I had to have!And the gold, chippy PLATEAU……….that sell for a bloody fortune here in the STATES.I couldn’t balance all my treasures and wandered through without doing more damage.So, I pulled out my EURO’s and started to peel them off one by one………….
More stops made and I was able to control myself a bit BETTER.Small purchases that weighed nothing and that spoke to my heart.Then about the third house we entered through a walled garden…………
And I was CAPTIVATED……………
THE BARN………….the barn surrounding by the lush greenness of frequent rain.Inside the barn is HER shop.Could not have been more STUNNING with the white FAIRY lights a twinkling……… for you AMERICANS that would be white Christmas lights!
This is ME before my break down…………..I was in HEAVEN.You see when we lived in ITALY years ago this was my DREAM HOME.An old FARMHOUSE with a barn.I was standing in MY DREAM of 23 years.While I was having that DREAM my Gorgeous hard working ITALIAN husband calls to see how I was doing…if I had made it to Normandy okay.I couldn’t speak to him.The tears just came the throat tighten and no words could escape my mouth.I was overcome with emotion.First off, for him letting me take part in this adventure and two for being in the world I had dreamt about for two decades……no longer then that.Most of my LIFE.
Then we are greeted by this BEAUTIFUL woman!Note her earrings!She couldn’t have been more gracious.Her name I believe was CHARLOTTE.
CHARLOTTE, served coffee for us in the garden.I learned something about dunking a sugar cube is called a DUCK?Did I make that up or did you tell me that SHARON?I think I’m missing a bit of the story………………gorgeous cups FRENCH coffee.Note her sandals too………I had my eye on those!
Then there was the shop across from the BARN shop!TAXIDERMY,Vintage HERMES scarves,clothing with PARISIAN designer names I managed to screw up the shot!But you can STILL READ it RIGHT?The BEST of the BEST.(See below)This right here reminded me so much of my shop HEN HOUSE.A little of this and a bit of THAT!
I adore TAXIDERMY…………I know some of you willNOT AGREE thats okay…………..I would NEVER go out to shoot one of these creatures but since it has already been done and I assume many years ago I feel I am saving them.Does that make any sense to YOU?Probably NOT but thats my reason.I adore how she mixed the religious with the Taxidermy and the old used paint brushes.
Now, for the real story I started; I was overwhelmed with the BEAUTY and SPIRIT of the place.The PROPRIETRESS fit the surroundings perfectly.She had on pearl earrings that when I stopped crying I asked are theses magnetic?She replied ,”No,” and proceeded to take them off to show me!They were interesting because the BIG PEARL was in the back of the lobe and a smaller pearl was on the EAR LOBE.It caught my attention as being rather attractive!Upon our departure I started to cry again!By this time she had allowed us to see HER home inside…………….I have no photos of that as I thought that would have been rude………well, maybe I took TWO or THREE!!Again, I couldNOT help myself.
Beautiful YES?I happen to own a chandelier just like this petite one in CHARLOTTES home.GOODY, something we share in common.But I must get back to my story………..so she hugs me good~bye and offer’s me HER earrings!She takes it off again!I shake my head NO NO…….and say GOOD~BYE as that is the only word I can get out.Once back in the MINI van that SHARON is the MASTER of maneuvering the country roads of she says………Charlotte worked for CHRISTIAN DIOR COUTURE for over 20 years.THAT SAID IT ALL TO ME!NO WONDER I HAD A MELT DOWN……………..she lived in my DREAM world and had worked in FASHION!I told the GALS in the van now we must keep our eyes open for those EARRINGS!
Seven days later…….I’m home.Open AMERICAN VOQUE and what do I spy?The DIOR AD with the earrings on the models EARLOBE.I CANNOT BELIEVE IT!She wanted to give me the REAL DEAL.How utterly gorgeous of HER.IT even has an 800 number to call……………I call.(I’m calling PARIS by the way!)I tell the MADAME who is very nice and helpful my story and how much are they and where in California can I find them!She loved my story……..I of course, ask her if she knows my CHARLOTTE!She tells me there are many CHARLOTTES working for DIOR.However,she is truly sincere in helping me find the EARRINGS!
LOCATED……….AFFORDABLE…….ON HOLD………..STAY TUNED!!!
A few days later I drive to SAN FRANCISCO to BLOOMINGDALES where there is a DIOR BOUTIQUE.
DO I have to TELL YOU what happened NEXT?
These will BE treasured by ME for years to come…………HER HOME ~HER SHOP~ HER NATURAL BEAUTY………….
and of course HER EARRINGS!
I missed her in GIVERNY at the FLEA MARKET but I think this photo belongs to SHARON who had the where -with-all to SNAP.
If I can have HER energy and GRACE just a little bit of it I will BE a HAPPY MADAME!
I do OWN HER earrings now!
THANK ~YOU CHARLOTTE.
YOU really touched MY HEART!