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My Provençal Garden

It always happens less than one week after being back in Canada. Less than one week (sometimes less than one day) and I am dreaming about being back in Provence. Generally it’s because I go from summer to autumn/winter in a matter of moments. It’s always cold and dreary and I miss the intense sun and blue skies immediately.

The way through this malaise is my garden. I have spent many hours imagining, dreaming and thinking of what my house and garden in Provence would be like. I don’t know if I’ll ever have it in this lifetime, but thinking of it makes my heart feel better.

pumpkins and walnuts #TastesofProvence @TableenProvence

First the house: this would be an old stone little abode. I am not interested in something grandiose. Just comfortable with enough room for a few people, an office, a fab kitchen and most importantly a beautiful terrace. If I could have it exactly as I imagine, I would have a view to the Mont Ventoux with vines dotting the landscape in front of me. And I’d build a little guest cabanon. A small out-building for guests with all the necessities included. This way everyone who visits would have his or her own private piece of heaven. Plus who’s kidding who, I value my alone time; it would make everyone’s visit much more pleasant!

Then, the most important part: the garden. When I imagine this, I do it in French, naming all the plants and trees I would love to have in French: des oliviers (at least 4 of them, enough to make some olive oil), des plantanes, un pechêr, un pommier, un citronnier and maybe un figuier. Of course there would be the potager, the small vegetable garden. I couldn’t live without this: tomatoes, courgettes, lettuces, garlic, beans, endless herbs and on and on.

The idea of having this small place where I could grow my own food, make my own olive oil, and sit out staring at the Provençal sky from my terrace while sipping a chilled rosé is where I go when I am sad. It is my sanctuary. One day I hope it will be a true sanctuary and not just one in my mind. If you don’t dream it, it simply cannot be. So dream on and find your own place of peace.

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Paula Kane

Paula Kane

From a background in advertising and design, Paula Kane has forged a career that combines her love of good food and wine with her expertise in marketing to produce highly successful culinary events across Canada. Paula first travelled to France 20 years ago and has been returning ever since. She received a scholarship from the James Beard Foundation to attend Le Cordon Bleu, Paris, from which she was graduated in 2009. She has completed the International Sommelier Guild Wine Fundamentals and recently, the Hautes Etudes du Goût program in gastronomy from which she was awarded a Masters degree from the University of Reims in Champagne, France. For the past ten years, Paula has spent part of her year in the Vaucluse where she cycles, cooks, drinks wine, explores and shares her discoveries with others on her website A Table en Provence.

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