The whole reason for my European adventure in the first place was to visit my mum and dad in their new home in the south west of France. Selling up in Sydney and moving to the other side of the world is no small feat, so I needed to see for myself what it was that had made them fall in love with this part of the world and the new lifestyle that comes with it.
A quick flight from Paris to Bordeaux, followed by a short drive and I arrive in Port Sainte Foy et Ponchapt a small village on the Dordogne River in the wine country of Aquitaine. Mum and dad's house is a beautiful sandstone property built in the mid 1800's complete with cute traditional timber french shutters and a wine cellar. While the house had been partially renovated a few years earlier they have been busy furnishing, painting, replacing light fittings and installing a new kitchen. It's going to look fabulous when it's all done.
On our first morning I stepped straight into village life with a trip to the Ste Foy la Grande markets just a short walk across the river, followed by a traditional four course lunch at a local restaurant. Too full to do anything too strenuous for the afternoon I spent the rest of day relaxing on the couch watching British cable TV (a welcome relief from the limited french TV in Paris). The days following were spent with day trips exploring the picture perfect St Emilion, historical Bergerac and mum and dad's closest city - Bordeaux.
While the lifestyle might be a little slow paced for some (myself included) I can see how the appeal of brocante markets, delicious food, local rugby and an endless number of wine producing chateau has mum and dad won over. I just hope they can survive their first European winter (it's already hit -4 degrees)!