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French Alps swim session

Happy Sunday! I hope you’ve had a relaxing weekend so far and enjoyed a somewhat lazy Sunday morning (like I did)! How are you doing? Are you taking time to check-in with yourself and give yourself the care, love, and attention you need? If not, it’s perfectly okay to set aside time for yourself to do whatever you want/need to do during ‘me time.’ Maybe your thing is yoga, meditation, running, paddle boarding, reading, tending to a pallet garden you built, sewing some pillowcases for your home decor, making a dress to match your homemade mask, paddle boarding, refurbishing furniture, tooling around with some new tools, or even playing animal crossing with family and friends, but whatever you want to do during your assigned ‘me time,’ make sure you’re doing it and giving yourself a break.

If you didn’t get a chance to read yesterday’s post - “pastis and the French Riviera” - you can click here to read about my first time trying French Pastis on an island off the coast of Marseille! Otherwise, if you’re all caught up, buckle up and let’s continue this journey together! In the spirit of continuing the trend of where I was this time last year, let’s continue our time together in France!

My first few memories of this trip to France included a boat ride out to a remote island where we spent time on the beach, ate dinner, and enjoyed a Pastis-filled sunset. It also included children crying bloody murder on that boat ride, which while in the moment, was sad for the kids, but now, a year later, is pretty funny. No, I don't think it's funny when children are upset, but there is an element of humor to it knowing that their fear is probably the last thing they remember about being on the boat. Memory is very funny that way, especially with kids.My first full day in France involved waking up with coffee in a cozy, airy AirBnB in Aix en Provence. A leisurely morning not unlike the one we had this morning, my now-boyfriend and I had coffee while we listened to French music, got ready, and headed to his brother-in-law’s family house. Upon arrival we were greeted by one of the most wonderful families ever with plenty of food and drink to enjoy ourselves.

We all gathered at the house as a meeting point before we all bopped off for a hike, a picnic, and an incredible swim. We first took a leisurely hike to a waterfall at the base of the French Alps where we admired the beautiful blue of the water and took some pictures. After the waterfall, we hiked back up to explore some caves, which reminded me a bit of my time visiting Montana on my USA cross-country road trip. Having spent a good portion of the day up to that point working up an appetite, we found a picnic table where we ate some of the most delicious homemade French food I’ve ever had - including this savory tomato cake that my boyfriend’s brother-in-law’s mom made for me to take home while she was visiting North Carolina from France this past Thanksgiving, a cake for which I have since obtained the recipe and made at home.

Having eaten our fill of savory cakes, breads, and cheeses, our next stop was to a swimming hole in the French Alps, the most beautiful kind of public pool I’ve ever seen. We had to walk through some large fields and hike down some steeper hills to get to the swimming hole, and some of us got separated and lost along the way, but eventually we all found each other and enjoyed the beautiful, cool water.

Have you ever been swimming in one of nature’s very own public pools? Let me know! Subscribe in the e-mail submission box below and reach out, follow me on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, and reach out to me on the “contact” page. I’m so happy you're here and that I’ve been receiving a lot of really incredible stories, questions, and feedback from a community all over the globe! Other people’s stories that I’ve gotten to read via e-mail, text, tweet, DM, etc. recently bring me such smiles, and I am so grateful for all of it! I hope I get to hear all about whatever stories you’ve been thinking about as we’ve been on this virtual journey together! Also, I've said it before and I'll say it again, if you have any restaurants/eateries/pubs/coffee shops/ice cream joints/theatres/lookout spots you would recommend in other countries or even in your current home town or city, I'm absolutely 100% all ears!! I couldn’t do this without you! So THANK YOU! From the bottom of my heart, truly, thank you.



P.S. - If you want to catch up from the beginning on this series of travel adventures, here's a cheat sheet to the posts (in order in which they were published):

#2018 #2019 #2020 #globalpandemic #pandemic #coronavirus #covid19 #southoffrance #france #frenchriviera #french #frenchalps #alps #hike #hiking #adventure #adventures #europe #european #europeanunion #dublinireland #dublin #visitdublin #visitfrance #pastis #sunset #waterfall #frenchfood #food #picnic #bread #cheese #johnythegirl #johnywalsh #virtualtour #tourist #guidedtour #tourism #tourguide #tour #sunday #sundayfunday #sundayfunday #selfcare #selfcare #diy #howto #howto #travelblog #traveler #travel #solotravel #girlswhotravel #womenwhotravel #travelwriter #traveling #natgeotravel #writerslife #writing #write #writer #writerslife #blogpost #blogger #blogging #blog #actress #actorslife #act #actor #actors #acting #modeling #model #rolemodel #weekendvibes #marseilles #coffee #airbnb #aixenprovence #cake

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