Welcome to Lescure’s hallway, lined with building materials and debris. Where worker men walk up and down the stairs in muddy boots and leave piles of dust over floors and walls. The scene of my frantic efforts to clean up the mess each day, because I believe that happiness flows through an inviting entrance into ones home.
Inevitably, there’s a lot of brushing dust around just to lift it and have it land somewhere else, but we do see progress. We’ve conquered one side of the hall and put in an eighteenth-century farmhouse table. The table’s last owner was a clergyman who weighed it down with bibles and countless other tomes of faith. Nevertheless, the weathered tabletop does not whisper of religion to the cross on the floor, but echoes more earthly conversations of the families that gathered around it each meal. One table leg has been left with deep scars from whetting knives and the extensible piece of wood that was the seat for boiling hot pots of soup now holds a Japanese raku vase with ‘seringat’ from the woods. When I bought the pottery I learned that raku means enjoyment.
And then suddenly, my broom comes to a halt. Everything stands still as the sun hits just right. For a few fleeting seconds I’m caught in a haiku moment, just observing and enjoying, as you would when reading the timeless words of the three lines of a haiku poem. My heart opens to the delicate scent of the mock orange blossom and I’m filled with reverence for the tableau’s simplicity. The whole scene holds a hint of melancholy as I cannot make the moment last, but I take solace from the knowledge that life at Lescure is filled with brief moments like this. They are there, just waiting for us to let the dust fall quietly down, observe and enjoy.