Last days of 2020

Dawn of a new day

2020 has been a most difficult year for everyone. With a vaccine becoming available and a new president for America, I look to 2021 with hope for the dawn of a new day.

Toti Bleu stayed home in 2020. Just as we were preparing for a trip, France went into « lockdown ». I did enjoy afternoon naps in Toti under my favorite tree and two lovely young women spent a week in Toti. They came with an adorable Arabian horse named Kinder. Kinder and Vanille fell immediately in love and were inseparable for the week. We went for several beautiful trips with the small wagon, Kinder and Laetitia accompanying us.

Kinder and Laetitia
Charlotte and Laetitia coming home from a stroll in the forest

An artist from Toulouse came to photograph Vanille. He does charcoal portraits of horses and was interested in Vanille. We enjoyed spending time with him and look forward to seeing Vanille’s portrait.

This year I had my 79th birthday and Vanille her 11th. I treasure every day I can take care of her and I deeply enjoy each moment that we spend together. I don’t ride her but I take her for walks and we both enjoy that. We do, of course, go for long rides with her pulling the small wagon. Our forest roads are beautiful, not suitable for Toti, but perfect for the small wagon. We are totally alone in nature for hours.

Vanille continues to be the most important part of my dream. She gives me so much. Just to see her galloping towards me from the far end of the pasture makes me happy. At 6 a.m. I pop out of bed, knowing I should give her some hay. There is no time to wake up depressed. At this time of year it is black outside and often raining. Dressing takes a while and I leave the house with a headlamp to guide me. When I close the door I hear her welcoming me. When she starts munching on her hay, I wrap my arms around her neck and rest my head on her shoulder and breathe deeply of her strength. Her calmness and warmth enfold me and my day begins with a feeling that everything is OK.

For the past five years she has been a huge part of my life but at this time I find her even more important. We are unable to spend time with friends as we did before because of the virus hovering over us all and Arthritis is making it impossible for me to do many things. Mark helps me in many ways making it possible to keep Vanille. He is THE love of my life.

Into the forest we go
Pulling a few logs out of the forest

This year more than ever I realize how blessed I am. I feel so lucky to have lived so long. I love my life completely. My children are healthy and happy and we are in touch often, loving and creative communications. I am in a relationship with a man who honors nature as much as I do and who takes loving care of not only me but Bella the Border Collie who gives us comic relief, Beau, the quiet cat, hundreds of wild birds and one small hen named Penny as well as one very big horse. As I write the snow is falling and our world is white. The fire in the woodstove is blazing and all is right in my world.

I wish everyone a healthy and happy new year filled with beauty and kindness to all living beings.

About Suzanne

American living in France. Artist and lover of nature, gardening, all living beings. Married to the love of my life, mother of two wonderful daughters and grandmother.
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5 Responses to Last days of 2020

  1. This brought tears (of happiness!) to my eyes Suzanne. I’m so lucky to have met you and to know the environment in which you live. When I read your writing, I am there. xxxx

  2. Ashlyn says:

    Somehow this brought me to tears. There is so much love and beauty in your writing and your life. Thank you for sharing these moments and your wonderful paintings.

  3. Nicole says:

    So lovely to hear from you Suzanne. Thank you for sharing your story. Thinking of you surrounded by so much love. All the best for 2021. Sending love and kisses xxxx

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