Sunday, it is still snowing. I read. A sentence from Chateaubriand in Memoires d’Outre-Tombe: ” “A sweet and subtle scent of heliotrope was exhaled by a little patch of beans that were in flower; it was brought to us not by a breeze from our own country but by a wild Newfoundland wind, unrelated to the exiled plant, without sympathy of shared memory or pleasure. In this perfume not breathed by beauty, not cleansed in her bosom, not scattered where she had walked, in this perfume of a changed sky and tillage of the world there was all the diverse melancholy of regret and absence and youth.”
Heliotrope was the perfume of Catherine and Narda. Absence.
Pamela and Carolyn arrive. We are going to have dinner with Jim and Robbie Steinbach. They live along the old 570 rd, where, at the other end I had met the woman with the dogs. In the evening, with snow falling from time to time, the atmosphere is just the same as the other day, gloomy and bleak. The dark moorland. Right at the end of the pale pink day, a reddish line draws the ridge towards the west, over there.
The adobe house is triangular and every window frames an incredible view. Everything is beautiful, the furniture, the floors, the photos, Robbie’s works and the paintings, the works of her friends, and other objects … all carefully chosen in this recently finished house.
Before we had visited her studio. Robbie had showed us the pictures she had chosen for her next exhibition. Everything superb.
Perfect evening. Our discussions ranged across the world. Their two big black adopted dogs (It makes me think of Yon and Cécile’s), so happy, seeming so warm and loved, bring us the comfort necessary given (comfort us against) the dreary cold outside.
We leave the highlands late at night keeping, inside the car, the same feeling of being warm and cosy.