Lost sheep are just one of the things I've found lately (this was a cover I did for a book, whose title was changed to Wish, Prune, Pray: Spirited away to a Wine Farm in Provence. I eventually printed the book, but lost the sheep photo. Then I quit printing the book and found the sheep photo. More about the book some other time, today I talk about a more precious finding...)
found object, found art
A Day in a French Life... by Kristin Espinasse
Ever since our kids were little, I've tried to get them to record the words for this French language journal. It's a hit or miss proposition and usually their father, who is also Francophone, ends up speaking into the microphone.
One of the treasures I have today is an archive of their innocent voices as they sometimes struggle to pronounce their native language (yes, even my husband struggles at times. So don't feel so bad about your own efforts!).
I didn't get as many enregistrements as I would have liked to, when the kids were younger, meaning the sound bits I do have are all the more valuable to me. So when I realized, several months ago, that one of my favorite pieces had been lost to cyberspace, I was sick with grief. I had lost Max's recording of the beloved and inspiring poem by Rudyard Kipling. (At 10-years-old, he had recited the French translation by André Maurois!)
Zut de zut! (Zewt-deuh-zewt, or "rats!") It was my fault for transferring the file to another web domain. (I had used one of those URL shortening sites, whose specialty it is to take a long browser link and cut it down.) This way I could post a shorter link in my blog, as well as track the number of times the link was clicked.
Live and learn, or, as the French say vivre et apprendre. I let go of the loss and the pinching regret, and continued to fine-tune my blog, nurturing it with new stories and polishing the old ones in my archives.
While working on a collection of stories, I happened on the poem again. Quel dommage, I thought, as I glanced at the page. And then I saw something I had not noticed before. There, to the side, was the original link... The recording had been there all along, I just had not seen it!
I got to thinking, isn't that how it is with so many things--and, even more profoundly, with people? How many times have we thought we have lost something, only to discover it has been there all along?
To comment on today's word or story, or to read the comments, click here.
French and English version of Rudyard Kipling's poem + Sound file!
Practice your French and French pronunciation: listen to Max's recording of the famous poem click here.
Here are some other books, published since 2003. Blossoming in Provence is missing from this collection, so is another called Pear Portraits.... Click to enlarge the photo. The book in the upper-left was my first. It was no thicker than a brochure, but it was a book to me.
This book wins the shortest print run. Only two copies! The book was the result of our first auction at French Word-A-Day (in 2008, for one of Mom's paintings). Long time reader, Diane, had the winning bid. I sent her a framed painting of "Pear", and made a hardbound book of the exciting auction to sell my mom's painting.
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For more online reading: The Lost Gardens: A Story of Two Vineyards and a Sobriety