mercredi 7 novembre 2012

week ten - vacance

Blog post delayed by having too much fun on vacation to get to it. I know, no one feels sorry for me. Get it - I'm living the good life.
The week started with amazing new Toulouse friends offering us their car and their ski chalet apartment in the Pyrenees for an overnight visit. Spectacular! And it was - the scenery was fantastic.
We had to stop at one point on our approach to take pictures of the majestic white peaks we were climbing towards. The second stop was for the sheep and their hearders on the highway. Very authentic. They had bells. Then there were the donkeys neighing. Then we were driving along the road where the Tour de France cyclists had to climb in the mountains - how the heck?! Names of cyclists still evident on the pavement. Took pictures of the signs for Steve - can't wait to see if we'll see it in person this year.
And then we were turning through the valley along to climb up the twisting highway through picturesque mountain villages on the way to the top - these are mountains!! And only 1 1/2 hrs south of Toulouse.
Our neighbours have this lovely new apartment in the complex right at the top base of the mountain/ski resort. Nice! It was deserted as not yet ski season. Nice! They've already asked us if we'll be joining them for skiing this winter and we've said absolutement!!
Sadly, the next morning, I was feeling wiped out so left it to Marco and the girls to climb up the face to the top and wave to Spain.
A nap recovered me and we packed up to head to the local thermal spa town - several in the area and one recommended by our friends as best for kids. Tough time - soaking in warm thermal spa water with amazing Pyrenees view in the background. Ahhh.
Evening drive back to Toulouse and two days to get ourselves together plus laundry done before the girls and I departed for London on Friday. Sadly, Marco decided he needed to stay as it wasn't worth just a weekend - he has to be at school this week.
We arrived midday - 1h 20 min flight - yay - to easy train connect to Southbank and Denise's pretty garden flat on Kennington Park Road.
Weather cooperated most days - thanks, London! - so we got lots of brisk but sunny skies.
Highlights included great local gastropub plus local coffee shop with super friendly Trinidadian owner, Frankenweenie at Leicester Square, Borough Market visit for Sunday dinner supplies, Camden Market visit to meet up with our good friends Carl, Ingrid and Louie, Covent Garden shopping, Trafalgar Square, Buckingham Palace, the British Museum, a dinner at Jamie's Italian plus another revisit to our previously found pizza fav on Southbank.
Lovely to wander and be tourists - thanks for the great welcome back, Dee + London.
Back now just in time to squeeze in one more mini-break before the girls are back to school next week. We're off on Friday to meet up with our Irish/Spanish friends north of Toulouse to see some pretty countryside and visit caves with prehistoric drawings.
Yes, tough go right now!
Then more visitors right away plus more soon.
The girls are also counting to Christmas visitors - now just over 5 weeks away.
We are very lucky - we know and will keep enjoying as we should.
Hugs to all - a la prochaine semaine.

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