In a couple of short days, we will find ourselves back on French soil for several weeks of nomadic adventures visiting family, exploring castles (both Renaissance and sand) and medieval fortress cities, freezing in the Atlantic Ocean from the other side of the pond, and climbing atop ancient Roman ruins.
Chloe is beside herself with excitement at the prospect of this extended trip to their European homeland, fully appreciating what an incredible gift this voyage is for a 12-year old girl. Sophie, incessantly badgered by her sister and much more at home with her toys and stuffed animals, friends and the TV, is less excited than she is anxious about being away from her creature comforts for so long.
I get it. Sophie’s a seven-year old homebody who is too young to really comprehend what a cool trip this is.Not to mention the fact that she’s worried her intermittent motion sickness is going to rear its ugly head in our rental car. Little does she know that the odds of that happening are pretty good considering her Papa and I will both be dusting off our stick shift driving skills. I will not be mentioning that to her, however.
Despite the little one’s misgivings, I am determined to ensure that she has an amazing time (or at least an amazing time in retrospect). In mapping out this trip, I have tried to mix active days of sightseeing with enough days of lazing-around-in-the-sun time. I have also convinced myself that there is no seven-year old on the face of this earth who wouldn’t love romping through castles that once inspired fairy tales, finding her way out of a hedge maze or kayaking underneath the Pont du Gard, one of the best-preserved Roman aqueducts in the world.
Time will tell whether my planning has paid off. Stay tuned for regular updates about our trip – and if it goes as well as I hope, I may consider a new career as a professional family travel planner. If you’re interested in such services, you know how to reach me.