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I arrived in a quaint village in the French countryside and checked into a charming villa arranged by my travel agent.
Once I was settled, I made my way out to the balcony. It seemed to be floating on the beautiful fields of lavender and provided a scope of a wide expanse of vineyards in the distance.
I had already decided that all I wanted to do on this vacation was spend my mornings at a local café reading a book, sipping a frothy cappuccino (with two shots of cinnamon sprinkled on top) and eating a croissant.
Then in the afternoons I would return to my room and take a nap; something I never had the opportunity or time to do at home.
And there would be nothing but silence.
So on my first morning I awoke and put on my coziest oversized t-shirt, yoga lounge pants and Birkenstocks.
I packed my knapsack with a book, a journal, some pencils and I made my way to town on a bicycle provided by the villa.
As I cycled along the gravel road leading to cobble stone streets, I felt as if I was living a dream. The scenery was spectacular. The sky was a mystical blue and it was as if I had been splashed upon the canvas of a spectacular painting.
I suddenly realized I had nowhere to go other than where I wanted to go and no one was waiting for me. I was free for the first time to do whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted and it felt amazing.
I sat down at the café and was greeted by a handsome waiter.
I ordered my breakfast and I retrieved my book from my knapsack, sat back and began to read. I loved the feeling of a real book. I had switched over to an E-reader for a while but it just wasn’t the same. The smell, feel and overall tactile experience of holding a book and turning the pages was more to my liking. It was traditional and brought back warm memories of my mother reading to me when I was a child.
And in that moment, I missed her and thought of how much she would have loved to just sit at a café somewhere abroad, reading a book and enjoying breakfast. She had never had the chance to do anything of that sort.
I constantly tried to persuade her to enjoy life and stop worrying about what may happen; sadly I was never able to convince her and so she missed out on so many of the good things. I made a promise to myself that I would never make that mistake and I would have her spirit live on through my experiences and adventures.
My cappuccino and piping hot croissant arrived and everything was delicious. Everything was perfect.
It's interesting because when I described my dream vacation to my travel agent, she said, “I know exactly what you mean and I know exactly where I am sending you.”
She knew the village, the café, the café owner and she herself had sat at one of the very same tables reading a book, sipping coffee and savouring fresh pastry.
She understood and appreciated that this was a gift to myself and that I was truly in need of a change.
She had planned business trips all over the world for me – complicated and complex journeys – and now she was taking care of my needs on a more basic and simplistic level, but detailed and logistical just the same.
I would have never found this place on my own. Gems like this are not listed on travel sites.
It ended up being a week away in which nothing mattered except being happy and enjoying the passing of time.
And it was worth every moment.
Voyages Groupe Ideal - Ideal Travel
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We plan travel at www.groupeideal.ca
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