remettre au lendemain


                     Smokey, back from a romp with the ragondins.

historiette (ee-stor-ee-ette) noun, feminine

    :  short story

synonyme: nouvelle, récit

A Day in a French Life... by Kristin Espinasse

Last night I dialed up Mexico and listened as Mom picked up the phone at the other end of the jungle. I felt grateful to hear her voice and immediately asked whether she would like to hear about the fictional nouvelle that I had begun.  

Mom was game. 
Only, as I heard myself recount the historiette (involving a senile goat that wears recycled espadrilles), I realized--before Mom even suggested it--that I still wasn't addressing the muse... or was it that the muse wasn't addressing me?... or rather neither of us was "addressing" but rather "a-skirting". Quite simply put, we were, both of us, the muse and I, conveniently and once again skirting the heart's history. Whether or not skirts were involved is beside the point. Let's see, is there a point?

I think you use humor to deflect, Mom pointed out, in so many mom-wise words. 
Underneath the guise of comedy, lie your profound stories. 

I offered a few stuttered yah-yahs your right about thats. Mom was unconvinced. That is when she reminded me of a line she had just heard in a movie, words that stirred her heart, and maybe they would stir up my own in time to share a few true lines.

"You are God's Muse"

 "You are God's muse," Mom said, quoting the film. She left enough silence for the words to find feeling in my mind. We are God's muse.... 

Later that night, after the house had fallen to sleep, I somewhat reluctantly put my espadrille-shoed chevre aside, reassuring myself that the story could be told another time. I thought of Mom's words:
 "Remember, you are God's muse. Just fire up that computer, put your hands over that keyboard and LET IT RIP!"

I opened a new window on my computer screen. I took a sip of coffee, staring for a thoughtful while at the proverbial blank page. Finally, I typed in the title of my story. My throat tightened followed by a stinging in the eyes. Closing them, I felt wet lashes.

I looked up at what I had typed: only a word, only a heading. The title read "Naked". 

Next, I closed the word document and shut off the computer. I walked down the quiet hall to the bedroom, where I changed into my pajamas. I can't sleep without them.


   "Locked" in St Paul Trois Chateaux (c) Kristin Espinasse

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Bill in St. Paul

Boy, talk about leaving us hanging...I guess we'll have to wait until Friday. (It's almost as bad as the end of a Hardy Boys chapter - it makes it difficult to stop the bedtime reading short of finishing the book.)

Smokey's looking good, a bit wet - he didn't have another run-in with the gardener and her hose, did he?


Thank you so much for your (always)lovely pictures. Seeing Smokey alway lights up my day and my boring admin job :-) How I love those few seconds of holiday feeling!

Big hug to smokey

lots of love from
Helen, Belgium

Herm Meyer

Salut Kristin,

A "sneaker-shoed goat" sounds like a good start.... and naked? Can't imagine where you're going with this, but it could get interesting as you "go at" it

Herm in Phoenix, AZ


The photo was somewhere in my memory...
I love that photo at the end of your newsletter. What a remarkable choice! I believe the heart of the story is behind that locked gate.
May your Muse help you to unlock it, and to take you over there, behind those gates, where space and time no longer matter, people and living creatures try to survive, where images can get intense, plots may become unbearable ... until you give them your last twist, and unknot them ... in your very own way!

Karen (in Towson, Md) Whitcome

Atta girl.

The locked chain is smiling.

Patricia Anzalone

very interesting!!!
A book entitled NAKED...Inability to sleep without pj's...and a locked gate....
And we DO love to see Smokey always!
Thanks for being transparent with us, Kristen.


Thank goodness we see our furried friends once again, I was having withdrawl from their omission from your thrice a week musings!
Cherrio Smokey, give your Mama Braise a kiss from Sadie the Bloodhound in Florida!

Karen (in Towson, Md) Whitcome

I meant to ask: "ragondins" are these beavers or groundhogs...? The Google pictures show them to be quite large! Smokey - after his horrible ordeal as a young pup - still likes a good romp!?! Oh to have a dog's outlook on life.

Robert Wildau

Holy Smokey!
I hardly ever respond to any blog, especially since my own wants attention, but you've got me. I'm not so sure you should give up on the espadrille'd old goat so quickly. My sense is he might lead you nearer to where YOU should be than naked vs pajamas. Nothing wrong with bagatelles.

CSM in Vero FL

I would love to know what the name of the movie that the line "You are God's Muse" comes from. I 'GET' it! LOVE your blog and writing style. Thank you! Carla

Julie F

Ah, Kristin, this one hit close to the bone. "I still wasn't addressing the muse... or was it that the muse wasn't addressing me?... or rather neither of us were "addressing" but rather "a-skirting". Quite simply put, we were, both of us, the muse and me, conveniently and once again skirting the heart's history."

My own writing class has a big assignment due Sunday. The muse hasn't hit me, so I guess I'll have to sit down at the computer and seek it out. I have another piece due by the end of the month, and when I looked at it last night, it definitely was "skirting the heart's history." Plus, I haven't written on my blog in too long. I'm deflecting, but with beaucoup de courses rather than humor.

As always, you make us think. And now I have to take action, too. I'll take Jules advice myself, if you don't mind, and LET IT RIP!


I assume you have some issue that is holdin gyou back. I have a novel (or true story actually) that is waiting to be writtien but it is about my sister and I can't disguise it enough not to offend her but it is in my head and some day it too will be writting, just like "Naked"! Hang on to it!

Robin Katsaros


I tried yesterday, fits and starts, scribbles, a few paragraphs . . . don't know if I can do this, xo R

Johanna DeMay

Dear Kristin,

Quand les yeux piquent, you know that you have touched the the very spot where true feeling lives. That is exactly where you need to open those locked doors: the real story is behind them. But to find it, your must expose your own heart... i.e., be naked. Many of us would love to write, but are afraid to stand naked before the eyes of strangers.

Have no fear, girl. You are beautiful and lovable and wise. Now be brave, and write!

Eileen deCamp

Love the photo of Smokey!
You need to break the lock on the door Kristin! I can't sleep "with" pajamas! haha

Tonya McNair

I LOVED this. I am a writer... and an artist... and a poet.. seemingly entombed in an admin. job. I am very grateful for the job and the way it pays bills and keeps me getting checkups, etc., BUT.

God's muse, eh? 'Never thought about it that way, but this muse must begin musing.. soon!
Thank you so much for your shine!

Diane Scott

Naked, we are at our most vulnerable. We expose not just our corporeal selves but all the is most ineffable and fallible about ourselves. Adam and Eve sensed this and hid their nakedness from Our Creator, yet as he has clothed the lilies of the field in beauty, imagine how much more spectacularly has he has clothed us, who were created in his own image. Stand naked before your readers, Kristin, and allow your radiant creative beauty to dazzle us!


I am becoming more and more interested in your blog with each new post and this one definitely has me coming back for more!

I love many of the new photos you've posted since my last visit.

Muse on!

Diane Scott

P.S. Forgive me for not capitalizing His Holy Pronoun.

P.P.S. I still like the idea of goats in espadrilles. Reminds of the children's novel, Sheep in a Jeep!

Jean(ne)  Pierre in MN

Ragondins sound like muskrats of which there are many here in Minnesota's lakes. We like them. See

Jules Greer

Historiette - well, you finally got me to pay attention to your word for the day and now I have had to learn to spell it to put it in this comment. Thank God you are hearing my words Honey. I am reminded of when you called me last year all excited about some new experience you had because of a new friends recomendation, and how I had to hold my lips pressed together so I would'nt say, "But Honey, remember I have been telling you to try this for years." I think perhaps that had to do with vitamin B-6. Who knows - I am always trying to "Mother' you, even from deep in the jungle thousands of miles away. I must say I am giddy with delight as I await all of your future posts - looks like FWAD is really going to RIP along with your writing assignment. I was truly suprised to see you grab the ring on this new merry-go-round so quickly - their truly must be a little bit of magic in the words YOU ARE GOD'S MUSE. I am even feeling the ripple of desire to really see with my eyes and hear with my ears and finally release from my heart. Ah yes - those two old friends I have told you about before: release and acceptance...count me in for a ticket on your merry-go-round.

I love you Honey and as always, I am so proud of you. I can't imagine where you are going to take us over the next year.



Herm Meyer

Salut Kristin,

Peut-être que vous obtiendrez vibes spéciale ce week-end pendant le solstice d'été.

À bientôt


Fred Caswell

We willingly stand naked literally only in the company of the one(s) we love the most -- our God, spouses, and ourselves. In speaking or writing only the bravest and most genuine of us reveal our inner nakedness. I believe you have endeared yourself to your readers mostly when you expose your true inner thoughts, beliefs, and weaknesses -- and we feel closer to you knowing we are more alike than different. And the result is love. Thank you from my heart for remembering an 83rd birthday -- it was superb!


I love reading your blog & anticipate each new edition as it appears in my in-box. Your photographs are a delight.
So, I am intrigued as to what words will follow in "Naked"
thank you.

Gwyn Ganjeau

Today's post took my breath away. And the poetry of the image...goodness me.

Nina Collart

Kristin, Merci tant pour les revelations! I love how your writings are so about the unconscious (at least it seems that way as a reader) you always end up in a different place than where you start. Can be hard to let yourself go into that space when someone starts you thinking about it! Cheers to being lost!
On the subject: Remodeling our family's summer house lately has me reeling with all the logistics, details and commentary our subconscious minds can create. It's as if my grandmother and mother are still trying to impress upon me how important it is to have such and such look like such and such! They are no longer with us, however, so I get to make the decisions now. Some of theirs of course will live on.
For instance one of the upstairs bathrooms greatly needed updating but I didn't have the touch to recreate the room this year. The walls unfortunately are papered, so I settled for adding new fixtures and towels and such. The new medicine cabinet is quite different than the old, leaving two unfilled holes above the mirror.
At some point it struck me that this would be the perfect place for a cute saying, 'Every day is beautiful on Cape Cod.' or 'You look mahvelous!' or 'Another day to live your dreams!' A month or two later I have yet to find something captivating, moving and intriguing enough to post on the wall.

I awoke one morning and heading into the other newly painted bathroom I grabbed a piece of chalk, set aside with the blackboard which has yet to find a 'home'. The chalk taking on a life of its own inspired me with the following (and right below the mirror):
I love to see you naked.

Cathy from Ashland, OR


The place of newness.

Hang on it'll be a ride:-)


Jules Greer

Kristi and I are always amazed and inspired by your comments...todays are marking what I feel is a turning point in Kristi's life. I am so happy that you are all here at this moment in our lives.

Kristi I think you should make a copy of these special gifts to you and keep them by your computer - always knowing that you are encouraged and adored by your special friends. Their words inspire me as much as yours.




Naked - letting your words come out - opening your soul - expressing all that is within - and henceforth - a story.

" a senile goat that wears recycled espadrilles" I can see this become a children's book or even an adult's book. What would be the name of such a person? A name from years past!

Love Smokey's picture, but couldn't find ragondins in the dictionary.


Leslie in Massachusetts

I second what Johanna said. I couldn't resist researching ragondins. Here is a link. In English they are called nutrias or coypus. A quick way to find the English name for a plant or animal is to google the French, find the Latin name, then google that.


Hi Kristen,

I always enjoy your blog. I was wondering if I or anyone else has mentioned Skype to you. I use it to "talk" to friends and family everywhere. I love being able to have a conversation and see their faces at the same time. I am able to show my new grandson to everyone. And it is a free download.


Michael Champlin, Memphis, Tennessee

I speak the truth not so much as I would, but as much as I dare, and I dare a little more as I grow older.

Michel de Montaigne, essayist (1533-1592)

Kristin Espinasse

Bonsoir les amis. Your responses, the quote, and all of the encouragement are not lost on this lifelong writing student. I cant thank you enough! 

Sharon, you mentionned Skype and thats just what Mom and I were talking about earlier this evening. You are right. We need to get this working! My poor Dad has been on me for a while about this. Its time to hook up and call!

Wishing everyone a great day or night.



God's muse---this I am going to carry with me!! Thanks. Mary

bill rollins

Hope everyone in your neighborhood is OK and riding out the floods without damage or injury.

Maureen France

Hello Kristin,

I always enjoy reading what you write, you bring everything to life, I can just imagine each situation, keep up the good work.

I love all the photographs, and I am happy to see your lovely dog enjoying life after getting over the attack that almost killed Smokey. I have three Jack Russells, one is profoundly deaf.

I bought my husband his dog after our son moved house taking his Jack Russell Maggie, we missed her. On a visit from Maggie when Jack was just 9 months old, he became dad to 6 puppies by accident!

Neige was the last one born, she was snow white. We love her to bits, she is hard work being deaf, but we would not be without her. We kept one of her brother as well, Jack, Jackson and Neige are our three little pets.

Best wishes Maureen.


Newforest, I love your words of wisdom!

Kristin, I know you have a storyin you to share. You have already proven you have talent...just keep moving forward. Good luck!!


Write about your mother's life - it spans an important period of time, it influences your own life, and she is, shall we say, a character worthy of 'the telling'.

If we could swap mothers, I would, gladly, in a minute.

Carole Buschmann

I agree with the last comment by " Passerby". You have a lovely gift of not only observing but twisting words so that one looks at the same old thing in a new way. I hope you continue to use that skill and relax and just write about your life. The novel will come through.

joie  carmel,ca

Not sure what the muse would think of goats with espradilles...but, who knows perhaps the muse wore them also. Smokey is so.....boy dog and so cute. Hope you are not affected in anyway by the flash floods in the Var. Bon nuit.


Sounds like you've got a lot to say. I hope you'll soon be ready to hear it.


Salut Kristin!

Just saw the news of the flood and am hoping that you, your family, and pets are all safe. Read and enjoy your article faithfully. Take care.



Bill, Joie, Sandy and friends, thanks for your notes about the flooding. Though we are fine up here, near Orange (Vaucluse), we were saddened to learn that our former stomping grounds--in Les Arcs-sur-Argens--have been upturned. Les Arcs-sur-Argens was hit the worst. Friends tell me the bridge has been washed away. Earlier, I saw a photo of the town center... the municipal parking lot has a hole in the center! I am thinking of Mom's friend -- the panhandler who sleeps behind a car, in a garage in town. I hope she is okay.


Hello Kristin: I've never entered any comment or post any blog on anyone's "space" or website. Surely, I've been tempted with those travel review sites, but as the saying goes, "if you cannot say anything nice..." If I don't tell you the delight I get in reading your entries, then will always be behind that locked gate! No, I want to stand "naked" and let you see how your historiette fills up my senses. I always look for your FWAD in my inbox. I am reading your book as well and I am getting a good dose of double delight. Merci.

Kristin Espinasse

ETE -- so happy to see your comment. That locked gate is getting weaker thanks to you to others. And I enjoyed your reminder if you cannot say anything nice.... So true!

Hope to speak again sometime! Best wishes.


After I read your amazingly a-musing story, I had to search out your Mom's response! I can almost feel the breeze in my hair as I look forward to you letting-it-rip!!!


Gmail has a very good video chat service and it is free. I like it better than skype. You have to have a Gmail account and then upload the video chat program. You'll need a camera/michrophone if your computer doesn't have one.

Betty Gleason

Hi Kristin,
Obviously you have touched a nerve with so many newbies signing on. To me the tears are the most telling.
When I am talking with God and have reached the heart of the matter, the tears start to flow. I always think of them as the tears of truth. This is fine in my bedroom or home office, but it becomes embarassing in church. People must think I have some tragic problem. I know this because once even the priest wanted to console me after mass, when my prayer had been one of thanks to God for taking such good care of my children. It seems ironic but now I try not to pray too deeply in church, and always have tissues with me just in case my mind should wander to truth.
Best of luck as you attempt to transcribe your areas of vulnerability and truth.
Hugs always,
Betty From Hobe Sound, FL 64 at 6:53 am

Sion @ paris (im)perfect

Hi Kristin,

I understand this so well. Your new title alone, "Naked," and your tears tell me that is where your true story lies. Flannery O'Connor said "The writer can choose what he writes about but he cannot choose what he is able to make live." You know inside what will sing.


Well I was just really getting into your story Naked! how exciting. What will happen next? The wooden locked doors leading into where I wonder.

Alberta Boileau

Hi Krispin,
I grew up eating dictionaries and encyclopedias for breakfast and dessert so every time I see a new word I rush to my Robert&Collins. Ragondin was a new word for me so I looked it up and found the english translation to be coypu, another new word for me. I didn't think it would be a beaver. Being Canadian I am quite familiar with our national emblem.
The dictionary says that coypu is a South American aquatic rodent. The fur of this rodent is usually called Nutria.
Another little bit of useless information...........A plus tard..Alberte


About tears, church, hiding . . . such a timely bit of time-travel back to this mid-June page for me today, as I too cried through church yesterday; I've come to believe the humbling experience is good for me. I didn't even know what the tears were about, but believe they are washing away something that helps or will wash ashore something that I need to pick up and examine, like a shell of life long sense abandoned that needs a new tenant.

So finding this page today was providential, because this morning I made a concentrated effort to come into His presence. Thoughts of reading the Bible and plans and food all rushed in to offer an escape from that void, but I forced myself to wait, and painfully came to admit that I felt alone and lost. For a long time the mental monologue was futile. Then cried out. Still obliged to wait. My mind threw scriptures at me like life-preservers as I drifted at sea, like "Lo I am with you always ..." etc., but they too were escape hatches, me trying to take care of me. So I waited. It became restful, as the first offer to hand back the reins.

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