Friday, May 31, 2013

One of the Joys of the Expatriate Life.................Travel!

Months ago, when MH put down his cell phone and told me that he'd just received an offer for a career opportunity in Saudi Arabia, one of the first things I asked him was "How far is Saudi from France?"  Predictable, huh?
MH and I have lived in Saudi for about three months now and are settling into our new home and community. I've found that part of our day to day conversations with new friends here in Saudi center around travel adventures and upcoming travel plans.  While being away from home and family is emotional and difficult at times, the life of an expatriate (expat) appeals to MH and me and our love of travel. Most companies who employ expats offer generous vacation and/or R&R time to allow employees and their families to get away and travel home or to other desired destinations.
So for MH and I, our first expat getaway is almost here!
On Wednesday we leave for FRANCE!  It's a short trip this time, just 7 nights. We're flying into Paris and then taking the TGV train to Avignon. The TGV,  or "Train à Grande Vitesse" is France's high speed train system that travels to over 140 destinations within France and at speeds over 200 MPH. I love the TGV and it's one of the experiences in France to which I look forward. The train ride from Paris to Avignon takes about 3 hours and provides a great window upon the constant beauty that is the countryside of France.
Map showing the TGV Train Routes
Fellow traveler on the TGV in 2011
We'll pick up our rental car at the train station in Avignon and drive to the village of Gordes in the Luberon region of Provence. Gordes is perhaps my favorite village in France and holds for me such special memories from our first trip to France in April, 2003. It will be our base for daily trips to surrounding villages and their weekly brocante markets.  I'm so excited and can't wait to find some new treasures for my store! After a few days in Provence, it's back to Paris on the TGV where we'll spend 3 nights.

Picture from our first trip to Gordes in April, 2003
Au revoir, Mitty