While I was still acting out as Forest Gump on the run a while ago, I also made a quick stop by the perfume shop while speeding along to who knows where. That is of course the day Hartman left on his business trip. Normally it doesn’t bother me and I use the time for some good old fashioned selfish indulgence into whatever takes my fancy. This time though, caught my mood off guard and drove me to extremes. I sought solace in the arms of Coco Chanel and Hermes no less. On top of my sadness and depression I had now successfully added the load of guilt. I picked up speed


For the week I was alone, I struggled with my conscience, having spent this obscene amount on perfume and tried my best to blame it on my impulsive nature, which is true after all…still, it doesn’t justify an excuse. So, being born both impulsive and ingenious, I arrived at a solution to the problem. The problem of my guilt that is.

On Hartman’s arrival back in Paris, we had this glorious magical summer’s day. I sent him a message telling him to be home at 18:00. We have a date. He was not to be late. Now, send a man a message like that and see what happens…?


 Oh, you want to know about the date? Well, imagine this…I have a basket at the ready, filled with his favorite goodies like peaches wrapped in prosciutto, scallops with orange and a saffron mayonnaise, a cold champagne, a baguette to dip into rich seductive olive oil and fleur de sel…I have ordered and received my golden exuberant sunshine. The river Loire is 2 minutes walking from our front door, the water rushing by, heightening the sensation of summer madness, sun, and bare skin…..and me, enveloped in Coco Chanel.


I am home. I have no guilt. I love my Chanel. I have a happy husband. And through it all runs a river.


All the sketches were done where we lounged by the Loire(except for Chanel)..in watercolor, pen or pencil on Fabriano sketchpads. (I apologize for the off-perspective of Chanel..it was done in the speediest of time, I didn’t check!)



Lin said…
RONNELL!! WHAT A PERFECTLY FANTASTICALLY DESIGNED DAY – SPIRIT – SKETCHES — THE WORKS! Your writing has me mesmerized, dreamy, liquid with ideas, inspiration, visions!! BRAVA, mia cara!! BRAVA! for the soul behind all of this .. and so much more!!
July 17, 2007 6:05 PM  
Sandy said…
Ronell..I just shake my head and wonder how you merge both a wonderfully exciting story with your beautiful paintings. YOu can see me but I’m applauding. I’ve missed your posts!!!YOu know how it is when you happen upon a great book and it is so wonderful, you put it down and sigh..you don’t want to continue…because you don’t want it to end. I just got that feeling reading/looking at this…My goal is someday to be able to do what you do!!! wow..p.s. thanks for your comment and I do hope you join in show and tell. It is easy, no theme. Just go and leave a comment with your link on my show and tell for the day and I’ll pick up that link and put it on the front page right in my post…
July 17, 2007 6:22 PM  
Deborah said…
Fabulous! Fantastic! and on so Fun! A great adventure at home. I will be in Paris for 2 days at the very end of Sept. and then 2 days in mid Oct. I would love if we could meet!
July 17, 2007 6:57 PM  
Teri C said…
More fabuous paintings. You are such an inspiration to us all. How did we ever survive during your absence!You REALLY made a perfect day for us also by sharing the wonder of it all! Thanks.
July 17, 2007 7:05 PM  
Sandy said…
Oh Ronell, You are BACK BABY – Lordy I feel like I have had a mini vacation (shopping and all) through your account and the lovely watercolors, sing with life!! Simply Glorious! Your Chanel was a gift for Hubby!!
July 17, 2007 7:35 PM  
Bonny said…
What a fabulously romantic date to have with your husband!!! And right there on the Loire! Can you say ‘green’ with envy??? That’s me, I’m green from head to toe.I’m glad you’re back too, and you made such an entrance with afantastic post and wonderful sketches!Big hug from Canada,
July 17, 2007 8:32 PM  
Claudia said…
So good that you’re back again creating and painting things!! And so well done!! I enjoyed both the story and the paintings! (And the sketch of the flowers in the “thank-you”-post is marvellous, too!)
July 17, 2007 9:52 PM  
Emma Pod said…
Beautiful drawings/paintings! I’m glad you’ve had some time to just
“be”. Enjoy that expensive perfume and the rest of summer!
July 17, 2007 9:56 PM  
Regula Scheifele said…
Wonderful story, wonderful paintings… I LOVE the Chanel bottle!
Good to have you back!
July 17, 2007 11:32 PM  
shirley said…
Everyone spectacular! So glad to see your wonderful paintings. I LOVE the bright colors and crave your loose style! Thanks for sharing all of it!
July 17, 2007 11:51 PM  
Tami said…
Gosh, I love visiting your blog!!! Not only is your artwork stunning, your self disclosure is just too real! One would be inclined to say, “shame on you!” but you are just too brilliant and funny!!!
July 18, 2007 1:04 AM  
martha said…
Fantabulous! Story and sketches, all divine.
July 18, 2007 2:54 AM  
Nancy Van Blaricom said…
Way to go … you seduce Hartman with your lovely new fragrance and delicious goodies from your basket… why feel guilty, it’s a win win situation!Your paintings are lovely. I was really inpressed with your basket and the perfume … excellent. Also, I think the flowers from the last post are awesome. You have such a nice touch with your watercolors.Soooo happy to see you back posting again …
July 18, 2007 3:41 AM  
Jana Bouc said…
Wow, what glorious, sensual paintings and writing! I like all the pics but especially the last picture with the softly oozly watercolors. Gorgeous! When my (now ex-) husband went away I always ended up buying kitchen appliances. Maybe that’s why we’re divorced and you’re still married–you buy perfume and make aphrodesiacal foods and I buy a new blender?
July 18, 2007 6:10 AM  
Irene said…
You are an inspiration. Glad you are back
July 18, 2007 7:28 AM  
mARTa said…
Decadent! You are like a good novel with pictures! I’m wearing my Coco Chanel tomorrow in your honor!
July 18, 2007 7:34 AM  
Africantapestry said…
Thank you for all the enthusiastic comments….it is good to be back!I missed it all – everybody’s work, the comments, the humor…I’ve come to recognize everyone by his/her own style of commenting…that’s so great!
Deborah: I would love to meet…let me know your dates and Casey and me can meet you in Paris and spend some time, or if you want to see our area, you are of course more than welcome!
July 18, 2007 8:46 AM  
caseytoussaint said…
Ronell – wow – once the dam is broken it all comes flooding out! It looks like you’ve been storing up all this poetry and color for a few weeks – these just shimmer with light. It looks like the good weather is here now – let’s hope it holds!
July 18, 2007 9:28 AM  
andrea joseph’s sketchblog said…
Where to start??!
I LOVE this post. The words and pictures. Brilliant. Your story was wonderful. And boy, these drawings tell me your on a roll again (no pressure though!). My faves? Wel I just can’t decide…maybe the perfume…maybe the basket (such great composition on that one BTW…nope I love them all! GREAT work Ronell.
July 18, 2007 11:41 AM  
Laureline said…
Oh, how charming!! I love the story and the paintings and I love perfume, too! Maybe we can check out a perfume boutique or two in Paris–if not in September, then in November!
So glad you’re feelig better.
July 18, 2007 2:50 PM  
juj said…
Oh Ronell – it’s SO great to have you back. I’ve missed your loose carefree paintings, filled with color and life. And your words. Your sometimes wry, sometimes funny, always honest words.
July 18, 2007 3:33 PM  
suzanne said…
Wowee…great post! Here’s to self-idulgence. I’m glad you bought the perfume…I’m sure it made your evening that much more magical.
July 18, 2007 5:37 PM  
Robyn said…
What brilliant, gorgeous form you are in Ronell. The paintings are wonderful – perfect illustrations of your delightful confessions. I’m wondering if I walk through a cloud of Coco, I too could come out the other side of this summer slump – not to mention giving HWEM shock of his life 😉 Brava!
July 18, 2007 5:44 PM  
Lynn said…
Thanks, Ronell, for showing us how to live the good life. I love the paintings.
July 18, 2007 8:28 PM  
Carole said…
Ooh, it’s good to see you painting again! What a wonderful way to assuage your guilt. Sounds idyllic!
July 18, 2007 9:45 PM  
Jenny said…
All of this from a perfume purchase?! Maybe it would help if I started sniffing from the pretty bottles on my dresser. *lol*Love your artwork and your guilt-ridden tale. All wonderful.
July 18, 2007 10:19 PM  
gabi campanario said…
hi ronell, you manage to marry words and pictures in a beautiful way. i’m so envious! thanks for telling us about this wonderful day
July 18, 2007 10:42 PM  
altWhat a wonderful way to welcome your husband home. I plan on trying your fun and romantic ideas. Now, I have never tried Coco Chanel but i am going to check it out too.
Your sketches are lovely, free, fresh and delight. They must be a reflection of your personality.
July 18, 2007 11:40 PM  
Serena said…
What a wonderful day and beautifully illustrated also. I can’t pick a favourite out of the sketches. Great to see you back and great post, Ronell ~
July 19, 2007 8:55 AM  
jen said…
lovely lovely bright colours, my favourite is the basket so full of life!
July 19, 2007 12:35 PM  
hfm said…
The Loire, the Channel, your husband, your humour and your watercolours – gorgeous!
July 19, 2007 3:03 PM  
Brenda Y said…
You ARE back and with a HUGE flourish!! Love the art – so free and fresh and the story is absolutely wonderful. I’ll have to keep it in mind the next time I go on a “splurge.” 🙂
July 19, 2007 3:59 PM  
Lindsay said…
What a great idea!!!!!!!!!Makes me want to do a picnic in the bed room too!!!ehehehe
Lovely sketches Ronell! I’d say you were unstuck!
July 19, 2007 10:20 PM  
Africantapestry said…
Thank you for all your deligtful comments!
July 19, 2007 11:20 PM  
Tonniece said…
Welcome back Ronell. As you see you were greatly missed.
Love your musings and art.
July 21, 2007 7:31 PM  
phthaloblu said…
Oh my, you are creative in just about everything, aren’t you? lol! I’m sure it made your husband happy! I just love your paintings, so loose and colorful. And don’t feel guilty about Chanel. There is something about real perfume… I think it’s that musky fragrance… sooooo much better than cologne. Indulge and be happy!

Tthank you for your visit and comment, II appreciate it!

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