In Le Lavandou, Cather ate, walked, pondered and gathered. She drank brackish wine, bought figs, chatted with passing fishermen, collected blossoms. She observed. She rested, before moving on for the “glare and blaze of Nice and Monte Carlo.” She was firing sparks and making mental connections. She found a little place with much she valued and that gave her tranquility. She took a breath and leaned up against it, as if preparing for something. “She knew she was going to be Willa Cather, and the people around her knew it too,” says Robert Thacker. Her first book, April Twilights, a collection of poems, would be published the following year.