Friday, 2 August 2013


Oh my time has flown by, we are mid-summer, high summer, on-the-cusp summer. The holidays to France are over and we enjoyed every minute of our time there. We spent days exploring tiny sleepy villages, walking through the countryside near to where we were staying, trying to imprint it on our minds so that in months to follow, when we have forgotten that wonderful sensation of sun on skin, we can recall it all again.

We explored tumble-down castles towering over villages, commanding the countryside. We revisited some favourite villages from last year and discovered new places to love. We ate ice-cream every day and swam each afternoon, hugely grateful that we had the pool to cool down in. I can't claim that we did anything of any use for two long weeks- with the possible exception of the morning the boys helped their grandad move logs to the house for the winter.

The boys loved the fortified medieval city of Carcassonne even though it was jam packed with tourists like us. We walked the city ramparts and then the parapets of the castle and took in the fabulous views but I think really all the boys wanted was to get to the shops to buy bows and arrows. 

Kevin and I managed to get away on our own a couple of times, leaving the children with their grandparents. One evening we went to the cathedral in Foix to hear a quartet chant sacred music-it was a beautifully peaceful experience to hear their human voices woven in close harmony while sitting away from the heat in the spare medieval elegance of the cathedral. Another night we ate a truly memorable meal in the ruined cloister of the atmospheric and romantic L'Abbaye Chateau de Camon. I would love to overnight there- it has such a feeling of beauty to it.

I think once again we truly enjoyed our holidays, that break from real life which allows time to dream and imagine another existence; but also holidays remind us to be so grateful for home and homecoming, if we didn't leave what we love, just occasionally, we wouldn't experience that wonderful feeling of return. 

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