Happy birthday to the United States, and to me!

One thing I have missed since leaving the United States is the fireworks on my birthday. My son used to think it was a appropriate way for the entire country to celebrate my achievements. Now he knows better…

Don’t cry for me, though. I celebrated with a wonderful lunch on the Ile Saint-Germain, one of the many islands that dot the Seine River in and around Paris. Gorgeous sunny weather, the heat wave gone, a light summer breeze. I was reminded of this celebration of the pleasures of the Seine by Renoir: Le déjeuner des canotiers, The Boatmen’s Lunch.

Happy 4th of July to all!


Renoir: Le dejeuner des canotiers, The Boatmen's Lunch

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12 Comments to “Happy birthday to the United States, and to me!”

  1. Sylwia says:

    Joyeux anniversaire !

  2. Christy Somer says:

    Bravo Catherine!

    Your very first epic novel has a brilliancy to be proud of.

    And what a blessing it is that our children so often show the uncanny ability to bring us out of the darkness and towards the light of welcomed completions and brighter future’s.

    Your upcoming “For the King” is enthusiastically looked forward to; and hopefully, we’ll be reading and discussing it on WWTTA.

    I would certainly love to see you write an epic story about Eliza de Feuillide.

    After several readings of her letters from the Austen Papers, and DLF’s “Outlandish Cousin”, sometimes I deeply feel that much of the enigma of Jane Austen is tied to her emotionally ambiguous feelings and interpretations about how she discerned and understood her relationship with Eliza.

    And how such familial conundrums, would very much affect the dynamic of nuances within her art and it’s reception-with the rest of the Austen Family.

    Eliza was a very profound and significant person in their lives; however they may have wanted to simply put it away neat and tidy; and where it was mentioned in JEAL’s memoir, as the French way vs. the English way of life.

  3. Richard says:

    BTW, this is one of my favorite works.

    What a table! Wine and fruit, some cheese perhaps? Sleeveless shirts and top hats. Straw boaters and bustles. A small dog on the table, conversation, I believe I was born into the wrong century!

  4. No, Elisa, it’s never too late for kind wishes. :) Thanks!

  5. Elisa says:

    I hope I’m not too late… Bon anniversaire!!

  6. The wishes of true friends are always most welcome, Richard! I lift my glass back to you.

  7. Richard says:

    If I had taken the time to read my mail I would have noticed it was you birthday yesterday. I hope you had many happy returns. All women deserve a nice birthday. So here is to you, as I lift my glass in your honour. Richard

  8. Esme says:

    To a fellow July birthday baby-Happy Birthday-I cannot think of a better way to spend one’s birthday. I just finished reading Claude and Camille-thank you for the book.

  9. Thanks, Daphne!
    Susan, sadly not. But I am a strong woman, and it takes more than that to break my spirit.
    Christy, you put aside Jane for my Gabrielle! This is the best compliment I have received so far as a writer.
    Happy 4th to you, dears!

  10. Christy Somer says:

    Happy Birthday Catherine!

    Renoir’s brilliant and boisterous beauty is perfect!

    And I must say I do love your choice of having an actual historical painting as your inspiration for the physical imaging of your characters-so artistic and visually satisfying!

    So how wonderful it is to visualize Gabrielle as Botticelli’s Venus!

    I’ve been reading “Mistress of the Revolution” along with finishing up several JA related books, bios etc. As I am a new reader to the JA’s novels, I am always reading one of them. Just finished my second read of Persuasion, and have started Pride and Prejudice, which is only my third read.

    Now, since I am fully captivated by this “Mistress”, and the complexities of how her doings in life might turn out,I’ve put aside the JA readings until finished.


  11. Sounds wonderful, Catherine! Hope there were lots of handsome Renoir-esque gentlemen to make up for the lack of fireworks. :)

  12. Daphne says:

    Happy Birthday!!

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