Helping to research her lover's film on the great plague, Andrea returns to Provence. However, her journey becomes more a trip of personal discovery than one of pure academic research as she begins to enjoy more and more of the idyllic lifestyle.
Travelling with Mandla, a fellow South African and Black activist, helps Andrea put into perspective the more hedonistic elements of her new life. However, through the intensity of his own convictions Mandla forces his friend to re-assess her own beliefs, casting a shadow on the relationship.
As the story unfolds in a landscape evoked with a breathtaking mastery, Andrea and Mandla confront the uneasy relationships which develop between themselves and their lovers. Their difficulties form an allegory for those faced by two disparate continents, as they undertake the process of reconciling Europe's past and Africa's present.