Family Memories En Francais

This year my Dad turns 70

It is one of those birthdays

That really makes you stop and think

I realise of course that I am a way past 40 myself

With five growing children of my own

And yet my Dad turning 70 is something I struggle to comprehend

He is

Well, you know

My Dad!


My parents live in Spain

They have done for some years now

Soaking up all that sun and sangria

With four young living children

Getting out to see him on his birthday

Is not really feasible

What I would love to do

If I had the money

Would be to travel back

In place and time

To France

The Cote D’Azur

Where we used to holiday together as a family

When my Dad was the age I am now

We used to stay in St Raphael

Near Frejus

At a campsite called Camping Le Colombier

It has changed beyond all recognition

This past quarter century

But many families like ours

Still enjoy their holidays to France here

I have so many wonderful memories of our family summers

On the French Riviera

Exploring St Tropez

Drinking Orangina while watching the rich and famous in their yachts

Boat tours of Millionaires’ Bay

Bus trips to the perfume factories in Grasse

Days learning about Grand Prix and casinos in Monte Carlo

Trips across the French / Italian border

To the market in Ventimiglia

Accidentally ordering fish soup instead of chicken!

The campsite pool

The poolside cafe

Meeting up with holiday friends year after year

Going to the campsite restaurant

The club, the disco

Venturing out to the bar over the road

The mischief my sister and our friends got up to as we got older

We would be there for two to three weeks each summer

And we had the most wonderful time

Long hot days on the beach in Frejus

Days at the aqua park

Aquatica I think it was called

I remember the little shop

Our mobile home

Playing table tennis outside

Hours at the pool with family and friends

A circus with a real live bear

The night market at frejus

Ice cream


Riding the carousel

Caricature artists on the seafront

I remember so much from these holidays

The long drive there from Germany

Where we lived

Eating little tubs of Nutella with a wooden spoon


Playing cards

Listening to rock n roll

My Dad’s music

Tina Turner

Riviera Radio

I can still remember the jingles from that station now

Such a huge part of my childhood

My teenage summers

Such an important part of our family history

I will always remember and treasure

Our family holidays to France

Maybe we will find a way to go back there again

In honour of my Dad turning 70

The physicality of the place will not be what we remember

But I am certain that being there would put some real happiness and nostalgia in our hearts

And give us more magical memories as a family

As an extended family to treasure

extended family

Thinking of you as your birthday approaches Dad x

Where would you go back to from your childhood

If you could?

Which childhood holiday would you recreate with your own children?

This is a collaborative post

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