This past weekend J and I packed up Littlest and all of his many belongings and headed down south to the departement of Pyrénées-Orientales for a couple days on the beach.
Having just come back from Germany last Sunday, Littlest had only spent five nights in his own bed before we dragged him out again. He does seem to enjoy going places and discovering new things, though I think next time we do a four-day weekend with him, we’ll probably go someone a couple hours closer.
It was a 6h20m drive according to Google maps, and of course it was a Saturday in August, so we encountered about 1h40m of traffic jams on the autoroute. Littlest has taken to taking very short naps in the car, so it’s not as easy as it used to be to take him long distances. At some point one of us has to move to the back and sit with him and hand him his toys back when he pushes them out of the carseat with his constantly moving legs.
One of the advantages of the autoroute over the routes nationales, in spite of the expense, is that the aires are always equipped with a microwave to warm up baby food. This wasn’t an issue when he was tiny but it’s a fairly important concern now since most baby food is gross cold. It’s encouraging to see how many other people are traveling with babies in these places.
Anyway we had found a rental back in June which was fairly last-minute. We felt lucky because most places rent from Saturday to Saturday in France and finding something for just four days felt pretty unlikely. This was an apartment attached to the owners’ house (presumably a garage before they redid it) so when we finally arrived at 5 pm on Saturday (after leaving Poitiers at 8:30 am), the lovely owners were there to greet us. It had a pretty spacious bedroom and bathroom upstairs as well as a fold-out couch downstairs, which is what J and I slept on since Littlest only sleeps well if he’s in his own room.
We took it pretty easy due to Littlest’s naps, letting him get his first one in in the morning before going anywhere, and coming back late afternoon for the second one. We made it to the beach twice in the evening, and the first time was lovely. Littlest mostly liked playing with the sand and running it through his fingers and happily did not put it in his mouth this time. The second evening the Mediterreanean wind was out in full force so we didn’t stay long.
Otherwise, there are some charming towns down there that we walked around (Collioure, Balnyus-sur-Mer) and we had great weather. We didn’t even taken Littlest’s stroller this time because it takes up so much space in the car. We trucked him around in our Ergobaby carrier instead which worked splendidly. We also did a tiny bit of wine tasting and bought a possibly overpriced bottle, but you know, memories.
Yesterday on the drive back up we stopped in Dordogne to eat lunch (Littlest is surprisingly patient in restaurants and the owner/server was happy to heat up his food for us) and have a quick walk through Saint-Cirq-la-Popie which was beautiful. While the south of France was nice, it was slammed with people and I think Dordogne is prettier.
Now we have no outings planned for the remaining weeks of summer, and in fact I should get some work done especially now that Littlest’s naps are more predictable, but who knows if that’ll happen.