HONORE DE BALZAC
To D. W.
La Grenadiere is a little house on the right bank of the Loire as you
go down stream, about a mile below the bridge of Tours. At this point
the river, broad as a lake, and covered with scattered green islands,
flows between two lines of cliff, where country houses built uniformly
of white stone stand among their gardens and vineyards. The finest
fruit in the world ripens there with a southern exposure. The patient
toil of many generations has cut terraces in the cliff, so that the
face of the rock reflects the rays of the sun, and the produce of hot
climates may be grown out of doors in an artificially high temperature.