Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Monica and I have been pining for travel in general and Europe in particular.  Over 3 years have passed since we left Ireland, and time and money never seem to show up hand in hand.  
Although there were other things we might have done (without 15 teenagers in tow) we thoroughly enjoyed our trip over to France (and for Monica, to England as well, of course).

Our days in St. Avertin, Tours and the surrounding Touraine were wonderful.  The heart of the trip was the stay in St. Avertin with the host families.  Last fall twenty-some students from College Jules Romains traveled to Pine Point on an exchange.   It was a great success.

And that success was rewarded by a huge welcome for the Pine Point students as they were taken in by the local families.

The Zenonis, Marc, Natalie, Antoine and Charlotte were marvelous -- down to earth, cosmopolitan, with a warm and easy hospitality.  We should know better than to strike up friendships with people who live 3,500 miles distant, but we couldn't help it.  With luck we'll convince them to put Rhode Island on their itinerary.

(I've sometimes
 wondered about that sudden friendship that happens -- especially in travels.  Just people that you meet -- you may not know the details of their lives -- but you know them -- perhaps because you sense a shared understanding of the heart of things.)