When we moved to France, a number of people said, “Aren’t you going to miss your family?” This rather conveniently overlooked the fact that based in Swansea we were already a good many hours away from even the nearest of them. In fact, because we have visited the UK fairly regularly, we have managed to see them more than when Chris was chained to the inflexible teaching timetable. We have had a number of family visits already this year, and UK autumn half-term week saw the arrival of our eldest and his family.
We’re pleased to say that it actually worked out very well. We had to hire a car capable of handling all six of us and we had a day and bit of rain (it does happen down here). Nevertheless it was fun, and the two boys (ages 7 and 4), particularly enjoyed themselves. We went round St Tropez, took them on a “nature walk” near our house where we saw wild boar footprints, and explored one of the spectacular medieval villages nearby.
In a long day’s drive we went up to Courmettes where it was hunt day and the boys got a chance to see an dead wild boar, complete with blood.
On the way back we went through Cannes where they went on the beach and pretended to be film characters. Is there a minimum age limit to be a Jedi knight?
On the day it rained most we went to a ‘typical’ French restaurant at lunch time, and in the afternoon found the splendid Museum of Artillery in Draguignan which is actually deep inside a big military base. (If you’re interested and in the area, it’s definitely worth a visit.)
On the last day, in our more typical blazing sun, we visited the nearby village of Villecroze where there is a waterfall, caves, a park and a playground. What more could one want? The boys, who have been learning some French, were able to ask for a un chocolat chaud and une croissant. Well done!
Then in a triumph of imagination over common sense, they insisted on swimming in our pool. This was as spectacularly noisy as it was short-lived,. The truth that the pool water was warmer than any British sea in summer proved no consolation.
They’ll be back!