An almost ramshackle façade gets a colorful lift with a charming trompe-l'oeil.

délabré,e (day-lah-bray) adjective
dilapidated, impaired, broken, ramshackle

délabrer (verb) = to wreck, ruin; to spoil

Les grandes souffrances qui peuvent délabrer à jamais une vie affective ne se rencontrent que chez ceux qui connaissent la passion. Great sufferings that can forever ruin an emotional life only meet where those who know passion dwell.  -Boris Cyrulnik
Every time my husband and I get into another "Who Does More Around Here?" skirmish, the answer is always plain to see: I DO!

Do you see the clothes pile up? The washing, drying, pommes frites frying* machines as they fill, empty, and fill again? Of course not. Nobody notices the sweaty "behind the scenes" saint.

And then my husband moved north to the farm...

...and the hot shower went cold,
the creditors cried,
and the rats turned fanatic in the attic.

the stove light sizzled,
the recycle bins burst,
and the pool held not water but pond fodder.

the portable phones petered out,
the sliding glass door took another route, jammed,
then (perforce) came out.

No. Nobody ever sees the sweaty "behind the scenes" saint; we only notice his absence.

                          *     *     *

Farm update: The kids and I are looking forward to joining Jean-Marc in four weeks' time (when school is out and the movers arrive). In the meantime, our saint is sweating it out up north, where there are bees to break-in, grapes to grow, a house to overhaul (and dirty dishes and piles of clothes to contemplate :-)

References: pomme-frites (les pommes de terre frites) (fpl) = French fries

:: Audio File ::
Listen to Jean-Marc pronounce the French word "délabré" and read today's quote: Download delabrer.wav
Les grandes souffrances qui peuvent délabrer à jamais une vie affective ne se rencontrent que chez ceux qui connaissent la passion.

délabrement = ruinous condition
se délabrer = to fall into decay, to go to rack and ruin; to become impaired

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