Die hart van ons huis | General Fiction
Marita van der Vyver
Readers will relish Die hart van ons huis, Marita van der Vyver’s book about her life in Provence. They will anticipate a long summer holiday under a sun by Van Gogh – and then the author will kindly, humanely debunk their eagerness, for this is an everyday story about ordinary people in an ordinary house. With the trails and tribulations of a household we recognize but too well. And yet it is all still so glamorous!
The author could readily create for us the romantic notion of living in the South of France. But that she’s a tired housewife with too large a family living in Church Street would be closer to the truth. She and her French husband Alain have four children between them. Their own child Mia is in kindergarten and has a mysterious twin who gets blamed for all the mischief. Her son Daniel has more appreciation for his Playstation than the Provencal life. His teenager son Thomas has the longest ponytail in town. And none of them fit the classic Mediterranean mould. They cook with olive oil though, and that they do a lot. Especially in summer when Provence becomes the perfect destination for all their family and friends. Thankfully Alain is a conjurer in the kitchen, but the shopping and the mounds of dishes still need to be done.
This, says the author, is her life. Welcome to it!