I don’t know how to describe what happened next on this already-epic road trip, but please indulge me while I try. I think we’re gonna need a bigger blog.
Melanie and I left the idyllic silence and solitude of the Salamander Gite at Usclas-du-Bosc and headed back to the Avignon TGV station to pick up Mr. and Mrs. Pants, who’d been in Paris for a week and were now joining us. If you’ve never been to this particular jewel of the SNCF rail network, a few things to note:
- It’s NOT the train station that is just outside the walls of the city; it’s a few miles away.
- It’s ENORMOUS.
- It looks like the airport of your dreams, except with trains.
Through some text exchanges (what did we do before cell phones?) I found Mr. and Mrs. Pants; somehow all of our luggage fit in the car, and we were off to the hospital.
OK, no, not really. But given its nearly miraculous restorative powers, Demeure’s Petit Hôpital should be covered under all insurance policies.
After we drove through the adorable Provençal town of Isle-sur-la-Sorgue on its famous and busy market day at least seven times in a vain effort to leave the town and find our real destination, we parked at the train station and had lunch. I then called Carolyn, my Demeure contact and the fairy godmother of this part of our adventure, and sheepishly asked if she could perhaps come and collect us. As fairy godmothers do, she happily obliged and we followed her out of town, down a few small roads and through the gates of heaven.
In case you haven’t yet clicked on the link above (and then promptly booked your next group vacation), Le Petit Hôpital is a villa just outside of Isle-sur-le-Sorgue in Provence, managed by the consummate professionals at Demeure, which is a website you should bookmark immediately. The villa has eight bedrooms, nine bathrooms, 476 indoor and outdoor sitting areas, the best dining table in Europe, a room specifically designed to drink wine in (!), and every possible amenity. Here are some amazing pictures snapped by Mr. Pants during our welcome tour of the place given by Carolyn:
Now, just in case all of that didn’t make you go out of your mind with awesome, please consider the following thing, to be discussed over a series of subsequent posts:
THE GAY MAFIA WAS ABOUT TO ARRIVE.
Fasten your seat belts; it’s about to get really, really good.