Birthdays are better in France

This birthday was a big one. I hesitate to tell you I turned 65. I want to hide behind all those old lady caveats — “but that doesn’t really describe me,” “but I don’t feel a day over 24, 35, whatever,” but all that just makes me sound, you know, old. Nothing to do about it, really. It is what it is.The best thing I can say is that I celebrated in France. Friends got this old lady out to a nice restaurant or two. Other friends celebrated at home. Much champagne was consumed, enough to help a person forget most anything. And Mr. France, in a stroke of absolute genius, booked us into a week of thalassotherapy.

Les Thermes Marins are at a grand old hotel on the beach at Saint Malo. In case you are wondering, I get nothing for mentioning them. I’m just saying. I could go back any time. More yoga, more massage, more time doing guided meditation while floating in warmed and purified sea water, bring it on. Oh, and as long as you don’t drag him right into the spa, your dog can come, too. You can see him above, hoping that if he holds still for a bit, we can go to the beach. and here, if the link works, is he actually at the beach.

We weren’t ready to go back to Paris, so Mr. France found a little hotel that is part of a group called “Relais du Silence,” luxury hotels out in the middle of the countryside. So which part of the countryside did we choose? You get one guess and one hint.

Now back to real life.

12 thoughts on “Birthdays are better in France

  1. Wonderful way to spend an autumn birthday, and forget the number – it’s the excuse for a special occasion. Jacques certainly seems to have enjoyed his trip to the seaside, and the Relais du Silence are a fantastic invention. Many many happy returns of the day!

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    1. Thank you. The point I didn’t make, this being quite an extravagant celebration, was how many wonderful things are free in France. The hotels are fancy but playing on the beach and that magical walk to Mont Saint Michel are free. One reason I left California was that it had become too expensive — the whole state! — to be fun. You can spend a ton of money here, no question, but it is still quite possible to just park the car, get off the bus, even, and have a wonderful time.

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  2. Yes, birthdays ARE better in France especially spent with loved ones; Happy Birthday and as regards whether it is a ‘big’ one, it really is only a number, one you can conveniently forget – I speak from experience! Great to see little Jacques looking so joyful too…..

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    1. Thank you. Honestly, I think being there was good for his health. We heard a lot about the health benefits of salt water and sea air, having to do with antiseptic properties, the presence of readily absorbable trace minerals, mainly. Especially if he’s fighting a yeast infection — who knew that dogs could get them? — the salt water might have knocked it back. I can assure that he has regained his appetite. Yesterday he vanished mysteriously — Westies can be quite sneaky — only to turn up headed for the hotel kitchen! Fortunately the staff was amused.

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  3. First of all I am delighted to see Jacques prancing and dancing on the beach … hopefully his health issues are under control. Secondly (sorry … its the way it came out) Happiest of Birthdays to you. As for age … it was my birthday on Friday (which I spent entirely on my own as hubby is back in the States working and my daughters are likewise all engaged in earning the copper dollar in Britain and Malaysia. It was surprisingly OK. Not brilliant but OK and in terms of age which is really ratcheting up far too quickly I decided to multiply the two digits of my number which give me a far more acceptable total. I suggest you do the same – you are therefore 30 – how sweet is that! I think that you were in the Charente Maritimes or Deux Sevres after you left your spoiling therapy place. But really – it is hard to tell … so much of the French countryside is quite lovely in the spirit of your pictures. Joyeux Anniversaire a toi and many many happy returns x

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    1. No, I was in Saint Malo, then who knows where, but I have been told it was Normandy. The whole age thing. When I was young I probably would not have made sensible use of money. Now I think I make great use of my money and am grateful beyond all reason to have both enough money and enough time to enjoy it. On top of that, I have both in France. From what I have seen, life doesn’t get any better than that. Of course I have Julien and Mr. France to get me through the rough patches but of course they are both French. It’s all good. For the moment. I’ll take it, happily.

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