From Cannes, France...

lessons for clara

Dearest Clara, August is for going to the beach, isn't it? I didn't necessarily used to think so always, but the older I get, the more I miss the salt water air and carefreeness that comes with hot summer days and cool ocean water.  We were lucky this year - the beach in Cannes called our name.  Maybe if we're lucky next year, it will call again.  Here are a couple of things I've learned from this beautiful coast:

  • Rosé goes with everything: Everything.  Remember how I said prosecco goes with everything in Italy? Well here you can’t go wrong with rosé.  Lunch, dinner, aperitif, fish, chicken, anything adn everything . . . when in doubt, go pink.  And you can even throw in an ice cube or two.
  • There will prettier girls sometimes: At least, that’s what you’ll think, even though it is not true.  And sometimes there will be thinner girls and ones with more money, a deeper tan, cooler sunglasses . . . This is a place where often people have more, and it’s easy to get caught up in comparisons.  But believe your mother on this one, you are just as beautiful as any person out there and it will be your confidence that makes you so.  Whether your bathing suit costs $20 or $200, the ocean water will be just as refreshing.  And when you come home, you’ll wonder why you did all that silly worrying.
  • You can have cheese for dinner:  Really.  Our hosts are such wonderful entertainers and chefs, and evenings around the dinner table featured so many good things that were on endless parade.  Yet, one of my favorite meals is the night we were all tired, and we had “cheese for dinner”.  Of course, there were several different platters of all kinds, and accompanying breads, and baskets of fresh figs and honey.  The milk and the creams that go into French cheeses are so good, and the process still true to what it always has been.  Sometimes, something simple can steal the show – give it space to do so every once in a while.  And don’t forget the rosé.
  • Enjoy a quiet night in the garden: Cannes has a way of feeling hectic sometimes, but it’s amazing how many pockets of solitude you can find, and absolutely everything that is beautiful and fragrant seems to grow here.  I guess that’s why so many perfumes are from here.  Enjoy these plants and smells…the lavender…the olive trees…the herbs…it all comes together in such a unique combination.  You’ll come back in the future just for that experience all over again.
  • Go to the beach: That’s what you’re there for.  Whether it’s a little cove off the road, or in a full on beach club, go to the beach and get in the water.  Nothing sparkles quite like the ocean in the south of France – this is your chance to be part of it.

And of course, don’t forget your sunscreen.

All my love,

Mom