Actually that's not strictly true, as it's back to the slave-caves tomorrow as it happens. Still rewind a fortnight and it fits just nicely.
So here I am back from two blissful weeks in the Ardèche. Sunshine, kayaking, hiking, local markets, swimming and general lounging around for two weeks sounds like a decent holiday in my book. And that's what we got.
I don't know where to start or what to tell. We hired a car, hoping for a Scenic as we've had in the past, but instead Avis fobbed us off with a cheap and nasty Citroën Picasso. Disclaimer: no offence intended to Citroën owners. Now, Citroën make cheap and nasty cars made by and for people who's brains are in the wrong way round. Still, ripping the piss out of the car did pass the time in Paris traffic jams.
We stopped overnight at Hubby's Dad's. C made an absolutely lovely meal all of local produce (asparagus grown on the neighbouring farm, boar shot by JP this winter, local cheese and salad from the garden, and strawberries again from the neighbouring farm). It doesn't get much better than that! C's cooking is always a delight, even her 'just everyday' meals. Even though we were still quite full from a big lunch, we all took second helpings. I guess holidays are no time for watching your weight anyway!!
The next morning we had a walk round the farm with JP, and he showed us a foxes' den. It must not have been in use as Doggy didn't seem to pick up a scent. As JP said, if any animals had been there recently, even our "townie" dog would have noticed. It was lovely to walk round the farm and chat with JP. We were even lucky enough to spot a couple of red deer near a copse of woods.
Temperature was cold and sky was grey on arrival, but it soon got better and we enjoyed visits to local markets, mini-hikes, kayaking, swimming and lazing around in the sun. We did have one day of rain, but we managed to make that go by fairly painlessly by simply faffing around so expertly it took us all morning to leave the gîte and all afternoon to have lunch. How about that.
I love going to the Ardèche. I love the ace weather, the walks (we went on walks for wimps, as it was too hot for us to attempt the interesting-looking mountains in the distance - maybe one year we'll conquer them in October when it's cool!!), the markets, the fresh local food, the scenery... It's all jolly fab. So if you're looking for a fairly active holiday in France, go to the Ardèche. I have even added the gîtes to my links list so you already have somewhere to stay!!
Anyway I wanted to tell you all about it in great detail but I can't recall it all/be bothered to structure it all. Pics on Flickr.