I got back from my trip a couple days ago and have been settling into home life, largely ignoring my blog. I wanted to revel in the family life and my own environs for a while.
I love travel – especially with Sideboob – but it sure is nice to sleep in my own bed (I sleep very hot and usually wake up in a pool of sweat in any bed other than my own) with all my animals.
I’m also used to having control over what I eat and France this time was pretty hit or miss when it came to food. I rarely ever got to eat what I was craving (we spent a lot of time in tiny villages during the off season so there was usually only one or two places to choose from) so I’ve been all about cooking family meals since I got home.
I’m sure I’ll get sick of that, too, soon enough. Ahh, the human condition.
Sometimes you just wanna eat some friggin’ avocado toast. That doesn’t cost $12.
Since I overshare everything …
Today was the first day I didn’t wake up at 2am and then spend the next three hours binging on Friday Night Lights (Dad, you have to watch it, so good).
I woke up around 4:30 and took my time waking up the house, feeding and walking the dogs, and getting ready for my day. I feel ready to tackle blogging the rest of my trip.
Sideboob is a fantastic photographer she sends me photos after each leg of the trip. Then I compare them to my photos of the same place and decide that mine are all shit and chuck them and use hers instead.
I’ve gotten better at putting my phone away when she’s got hers out because there is no way I’m gonna do better. After I take pictures of her she grabs my phone and deletes the ones she doesn’t like which is fine by me, we all deserve to only see pictures of us that we like.
I’ve enjoyed looking through the photos she sent now that I’m not longer travel fatigued.
So … we left Plan-de-la-Tour and headed for our next stop, Rousillon. It is … are you ready … A BEAUTIFULLY PRESERVED ANCIENT HILLTOP TOWN!
It is known for its distinctive red earth.
We had lunch in the small square (and I mean small, this town made Eze seem big) and took in the blue sky behind the red buildings.
Sideboob insisted that I buy this tapestry pillowcase of a creepily anthropomorphized cat in French military garb to act as a companion piece to the giant dog in my parlor (I’m calling it that now).
I didn’t question her judgement because, as usual, she was spot on.
Then we departed for Lourmarin where we stayed the night.
We stayed in a meandering hotel called Le Moulin de Lourmarin where the woman at the check-in desk made the cardinal sin of telling Sideboob to relax. She told us we had to pay a two euro tax and when SB reached for her wallet the woman got all fluttery with the hands like, “No, no! You pay it AT CHECK-OUT, relax (you idiot Americans).”
Anyway, we took a tiny elevator one flight and then walked through a maze of halls and winding staircases to get to our third floor room.
We like walking and we don’t mind stairs but I couldn’t help but wonder how someone who travels with more than a small carry-on navigates Europe. Can you imagine this with a baby, a toddler, carseats, and luggage?
Not our problem, fortunately.
We wandered around the village, looked at shops (it seemed to us that the stores catered to a decidedly middle-aged clientele so our wallets were safe) and strolled around the castle grounds.
The castle was closed for the evening and guarded by a very good dog who was serious about his work. The grounds were left natural so we enjoyed a woodsy stroll and were enamored by a small herd of mules grazing in a pasture. They did this three-way neck massage thing that was so cute!
They were clearly the village darlings as evidenced by signs that asked people to not feed them bread. But it didn’t say anything about gelato …
I can’t for the life of me remember what we ate for dinner, but there was wine.
And gelato, so much gelato.
I’ll tell you what, there is nothing like strolling through a quiet village at sunset with the best gelato ever and maybe an edible. Woooooo!
The great part about traveling during off-season is that you avoid the crowds and get to see places in an unrushed way. The downside is that there is a lot less to do at night. We kept a pretty busy pace with travel and sight-seeing so early bed-times weren’t a big deal, but it would be nice to see these places full of life and music like they are in the summer.
Sideboob blew through seven books on this trip (wow) and I listened to lots of podcasts and did some reading myself; it was a nice mix of relaxation and activity. I only wish I had brought a notebook to wile away the quiet moments while waiting for a meal.
I’ll leave Girona and Paris for the next post, it’s almost 7:00 and it’s time to wake up the kids.