holiday with HF last week. We were walking in the Dordogne, in the neighbourhood of Sarlat, with what turned out to be a wonderfully interesting group of people from New York State, England and New Zealand. I've blogged about HF before, but I came home once more convinced of the merits of this kind of holiday - to say nothing about my enthusiasm for this part of France, new to me despite my frequent visits to more northern areas.
The photo shows pale grey skies on the first full day, replaced for most of the week by flawless blue, but the line of walkers shows for the sceptical how not every moment of a walk is filled with conversation - and reflects the fact that I had sprained my ankle, infuriatingly, within 10 minutes of starting off. (I subsequently completed the 10 mile hike, and resumed the programme after a day by the pool, but I'm not telling the quack)
So what do I remember? Birdsong, poppies, warmth, mellow golden stone, undulating landscape, the river deep in its gorge, the amazing troglodyte dwellings at Roque St Christophe ... singing "Veni Creator" in a stolen moment in a wonderful church in a tiny village when everyone else had moved off and hearing it soar in the awesome acoustic ... fascinating conversations with interesting people ... talking about all the so-called forbidden subjects as Mina took my mind off my ankle by discussing politics and religion ... food so good that we all looked forward to the leisurely dinners cooked by the chefs who came nightly to our hotel to cook for us.
Ok, so this is becoming a list, and therefore boring. Enough to say that the week was far from boring, and that my French felt much more useful than in the past. I enjoyed conversations in French on my day off, and I shared the poolside with a lizard in the hot sun. I'd love to be there now, and start to look forward to my next trip.
Itchy feet? Moi?