We have had a week in paradise. After our mammoth mission into the mountains on Wednesday, we spent the rest of the week soaking up every last little bit of holiday (cough-sun-cough). Lots of lazing around by the pool and reading. Finished reading one novel, started another, did a sudoku puzzle in mum’s book, wrote a few sentences of some stories I’ve started, and some I haven’t… was very relaxing.

On Thursday evening Luuk and I left the kids with my parents and went up to Bormes Les Mimosas, the old village, for a nice dinner out.

Mum and Dad had found a path up the hill that wasn’t on the road, so we followed their directions along this way – initially a gutter, then this rocky, rather angular path, but it wasn’t difficult and the view was fantastic.

At the lookout, just on the edge of the old village.

The restaurant didn’t open till 7.30 so Luuk and I spent half an hour or so wandering around the little alley ways and pokey paths of this lovely old village.

Straight walls? Overrated.

The restaurant was outside, but under arches with buildings over the top and little lamps or pretend candles on each table – tres romantic.

Lovely Luuk, enjoying his starter of salmon carpaccio with figs… and other stuff. I took photos of the food but they turned out too dark. For once, perhaps, I should have used the flash.

The restaurant had great atmosphere, and a cat. A few other couple were there when we arrived and it was almost full when we left – perhaps a bit touristy but clearly popular. And delicious. Highlight of my meal: figs stuffed with goats cheese and wrapped with prosciutto. Will have to try that at home some time!

We walked home in the dark. The Hotel de Ville (town hall) was rather easy to spot, lit up all patriotic-like in the dark.

The next day we had notions to go for a boat ride but no one was quite eager enough to pay the hefty ferry-fee and then risk miserable kids hemmed in on a boat for over an hour… so we went to the beach instead.

This makes it look far more relaxing than it actually was – babies and sand are a difficult combination – but the water was warm (if a little shallow and flat – good for babies but not as entertaining as waves eh?) and the sun was toasty-good.

Saturday was our last day and so we unanimously, without discussion, agreed to stay in close proximity to the pool for all of it.

And there was a frog hanging about in the pool too!

Luuk got a better photo… and got the frog onto the ball. Like something from the circus. The miniature circus.

Mum and Dad went for a walk and while they were away we got up to some hi-jinks… well, Luuk and Louis played cricket in the living room with a baguette for a bat.

two-day old baguette = solid

I cooked up a last-night-of-holidays feast and Luuk and I spent the evening playing “Ticket to Ride” on his phone, watching television in the background. Very relaxing.

White wine poached salmon with greek salad, green beans and spinach potato mash. Très délicieux! (if I do say so myself)

The train ride home was less relaxing, but that’s the price of a holiday in the south of France so who’s complaining!? Elena slept but she can lie flat on one chair, whereas Louis doesn’t fit so neatly, and doesn’t lie still no matter what you do to him… I suspect. Too many interesting things going on, or going past, but as always, he dozed off in the buggy between the Antony station and our apartment.

A gorgeous holiday, but I am glad to be home. Today was Louis’ first day at halte jeux (day care of sorts) but more on that in the next installment.