an afternoon adventure

we decide we should go somewhere we have never been before -

so we drive thirty minutes north
to the town of Senlis,
beside the highway scenes
mundane and beautiful;
truck rest stops and green fields
with horses galloping -

we bump along cobbled streets
of a town lined with fine houses -
windows wrapped with wisteria vines,
and painted wooden shutters -

we visit the musee of art
to gaze at work of Séraphine Louis
who once lived and worked nearby -
her hands fashioned floral scenes
so strange and brilliant,
sombre, beautiful -
if you haven't seen the film of her life,
you really must...

we also explore underground,
stone-bare foundations and archaeological finds
from hundreds of years ago -
we enter a great cathedral
to wander and rest,
our steps echoing,
candles blazing -

outside snow whirls
and catches on coat, hair, nose tip -

it is really very cold,
and so we agree unanimously
that hot chocolate and coffee
and fresh crepes are in order,
alex and I share the best crepe I've ever tasted
with homemade salted caramel,
and reu munches happily on a plain one -

afterwards my handsome man
humours me by standing in front
of some magnificent blue
(like his eyes you see)

and we are on the road again,
I distract the littlest adventurer
(who has always intensely disliked being strapped in the car-seat)
we fumble over a balloon, banana, books, water bottle -
we click and sing and make funny sounds
we watch fields and airport runways turn white,

we return to a warm home,
start a bath running, and think
oh, how blessed we are -
for afternoons like these...