While writing my book, Walnut Wine & Truffle Groves, I got lost (daily occurrence in rural France) and ended up in Molières, an unfinished pocket-sized, bastide town in the Dordogne region of France, said to be haunted by the ghost of Queen Blanca who was poisoned by her husband Pedro around 1360.
When I arrived, not even dear Blanca was present. No one in the square; no loitering locals at the café. The only sign of life I saw was a crate of walnuts left unattended on a bench. Curious about who left them there, I waited a little bit longer. It started to rain and out of the crevices of the village I heard the scratch of shuffling feet. Eventually this little man appeared in a beret and purple sweater.
He picked up the orphaned crate of walnuts and kept on walking toward me. I asked him if I cold take a picture and he replied in broken English,
“Yes, but I can’t stop---my nuts are getting wet.”
The picture is blurry because I couldn’t focus fast enough through my laughter, but the memory is crystal clear.