The two books I’ve been working on (Faces of Tradition: Weaving Elders of the Andes and Beyond the Stones of Machu Picchu: Folk Tales and Stories of Inca Life) went to press a couple of weeks ago, and instead of cleaning my desk and launching into the next big project, I split. For France. For Provence and then Paris, to be precise.
It was a splendid break, but not what I would call a leisurely one. Our son and daughter-in-law and five-year-old grandson have been living and working in Provence this summer, and our job, Thomas’s and mine, was to ferry their older two kids, ages ten and twelve, across the waters after they got out of school. Nice gig, don’t you think?
For reasons best left unexplained, we were three days late departing, but the richness of our time together there more than made up for the shortened trip. We climbed mountains, toured castles, shuffled through catacombs and cathedrals, gawked at all manner of art, ran marathons through the Paris Metro (wish I had had my pedometer on, just for the record) and drank a great deal of cold rosé. Because it was blazing hot over there.
While I was gone, work went on. My trusty editorial sidekick, Trish Faubion, carried on with the details. Our indomitable designer, Annie Douden, just back from the North Pole (I am not making that up) put finishing touches here and there. There’s a lot to say about the book they finaled out, and it will be said as time goes by, but here for now, for your viewing pleasure, is the cover. Isn’t it lovely?