When we back to France last month, we were just in time to go to the one-year anniversary mass for Marthe. She died in May 2013 after suffering a series of illnesses that had left her weak and diminished. Her children, all seven of them, plus spouses, the grandchildren, and great grandchildren were packed into the small church in Coupiac, all forty-four of them.
It’s been a tough year for Germain, his own health suffering. Years of hard physical labor have left his heart and body usé or “all used up,” he says. They’re repaired a heart valve, and he’s got his whole family stopping by almost daily, as well as a visiting nurse every morning who checks his medications and blood pressure. But he misses Martou, and his large hands pinch his eyes below his glasses each time he mentions her.
If you’d like to learn more about Germain and Marthe, our neighbors in France, visit water-paper-stone.com, or read the book about living in the Aveyron: http://tinyurl.com/n5vlsfn