It was as simple as a sign saying, "Ring and Come in."
I poked French Husband, "Its a sign!"
By the look on his face I knew what I was saying in French wasn't expressing what I meant in English.
He repeated, "A sign?"
"A symbolic sign that I am to ring and go inside... the brocante is calling me." I added, "Its a sign!" I went on to say in English, "I need to refuel." Though I don't think in any language I made sense to him.
We spent the night in Mortagne au Perche, and instantly felt like we could live here.
We had a "Coup du Coeur" as they say in French, which means, "Love at First Sight".
Blame it on the adorable village, the countryside, the restaurant, the pastry shop with the best lemon cake...
Blame it on the pastry table and Provencal urns.
Blame it on the best baguette, hot from the oven. That French Husband and I ate on the street like tourists.
French Husband wished he had butter.
My American ways have finally, twenty five years later, rubbed off on him.
Blame it on the oil paintings in the restoration shop.
Blame it on Stephanie, Chistine and Christine's Husband Jean Philippe, antique dealers from Paris who have settled in Mortagne au Perche. A few hours later we were having lunch together, talking about renovating our apartment in Paris, and coming back later this year to visit them.
Blame it on Stephanie who mixes an antique chair with a piece of tin roof.
Blame it on the sign:
Enter Freely (Entree Libre).
I believe that where ever we enter freely we gain just that freedom.
Blame it on this oil painting with a black leather and burgundy velvet case.
Blame it on Christiane and her charming old fashion style.
Blame on French antique textiles, iron beds and faux taxidermy deer heads.
Blame it on the sweet mercury glass, Louis Sixteenth trumeau.
Blame it on Stephanie and Christiane, their mis en scenes, their conversations, their bright welcoming smiles... their inviting us to share lunch with them.
But whatever you do don't blame it on the brocante.
A pit stop to refuel.
We spent the night here, in this 13th century Demure.
4 Place du Palais
61400 Mortagne au Perche
02 33 25 04 77