Category Archives: France

So Where Did You Go?

Standard

RTW map latestFinally I was able to create a map version of where we disappeared into during that 9 months or so.

Comparing to our rough initial plan (to use the world ‘rough’ would be an overstatement), this map had a lot more dots on it. Although the basic itinerary (which continents for example) remained the same roughly, the exact countries – and places in each country – had changed and evolved so much throughout the trip.

A few notable changes: we added Patagonia in Argentina/ Bolivia (loved it)/Colombia (thank goodness)/Nicaragua; we didn’t go to Chile/Brazil, and we shortened the time in Costa Rica significantly. At times these changes seemed daunting, and other times they were obvious decision. Initially we thought we would stay in each place for a few weeks, and very quickly we realized it was not realistic nor necessary. I will come to some of these changes with more detail in relevant posts.

It’s once again a powerful proof to that good old saying: change is the only constant.

The tool that I used to created this map was an online tool called ‘travellerspoint’. Although it wasted me a few precious late night hours when I tried to create the map for the first time (it just didn’t want to save. Totally No stress!), I did find some interesting merits. For example, it told me that:

  • We travelled 77,279 kilometres
  • Days travelling: 282 days
  • The total distance travelled is roughly equivalent to circling the earth 1.9 times! (so we’ve got a lot of carbon footprint to be accountable for …).
  • Distance travelled by mode of transport:
    • Boat: 593km
    • Train: 1,117km
    • Bus: 3,064km
    • Car: 4,520km
    • Airplane: 67,731km
  • we have visited in total 17 countries (although 2 should be deducted as they were just transits)
  • It even allowed me to export my trip to an excel format, which was quite handy.

Now I will stop sounding like their sales rep, and return at once to the most burning question.

So where exactly did we go??

Here is a map for visual person like myself.

countries travelled

Here is a list for the more brave-hearted (of the places we either spent at least one night or as major transit stops):

Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Tokyo, Japan
Paris, Ile-de-France, France
La Capelle-les-Boulogne, Nord-Pas-de-Calais, France
Lyon, Rhone-Alpes, France
Annecy, Rhone-Alpes, France
Hauteluce, Rhone-Alpes, France
Grenoble, Rhone-Alpes, France
Antibes, Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur, France
London, United Kingdom
Paris, Ile-de-France, France
Madrid, Community of Madrid, Spain
Buenos Aires, Argentina (here, bookstore)
Montevideo, Montevideo Department, Uruguay
La Barra, Maldonado, Uruguay
Cabo Polonio, Rocha, Uruguay
La Tuna, Canelones, Uruguay
Buenos Aires, Argentina
El Calafate, Santa Cruz Province, Argentina
El Chalten, Santa Cruz Province, Argentina
Salta, Salta Province, Argentina
Tilcara, Jujuy Province, Argentina
Tupiza, Potosi Department, Bolivia
Uyuni, Potosi Department, Bolivia
Nuestra Señora de La Paz, La Paz Department, Bolivia
Copacabana, Copacabana, La Paz Department, Bolivia
Puno, Puno, Peru
Cusco, Peru
Ollantaytambo, Cusco, Peru
Machu Picchu, Aguas Calientes, Cusco, Peru
Cusco, Peru
Lima, Peru
Bogota, Colombia
Cartagena, Bolivar, Colombia
Taganga, Magdalena, Colombia
Barichara, Santander department, Colombia
Villa de Leyva, Boyaca, Colombia
Bogota, Colombia
Quito, Pichincha, Ecuador
Lima, Peru
Miami, Florida, United States
Oviedo, Florida, United States
Miami, Florida, United States
San Jose, Costa Rica
La Fortuna, San Jose, Costa Rica
San Carlos, Rio San Juan, Nicaragua
Granada, Nicaragua
Apoyo Lagoon, Nicaragua
Granada, Nicaragua
Ometepe, Rivas, Nicaragua
San Juan del Sur, Rivas, Nicaragua
San Jose, Costa Rica
Miami, Florida, United States
New York, United States
Newport, Rhode Island, United States
Boston, Massachusetts, United States
New York, United States
Vienna, Virginia, United States
Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
Fort Collins, Colorado, United States
San Diego, California, United States
Pismo Beach, California, United States
Palo Alto, California, United States
San Francisco, California, United States
Yosemite National Park, Yosemite Village, California, United States
Mammoth, California, United States
Lone Pine, California, United States
Los Angeles, California, United States
Pape’ete, Windward Islands, French Polynesia
Moorea, French Polynesia
Atoll Rangiroa, French Polynesia
Auckland, New Zealand
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

What I Have Learnt From the RTW With a Toddler

Standard

Ten sleeps in our own beds after we finished our round-the-world trip, I attempted to list some of the most valuable lessons I’ve learnt over the trip and that are equally important back in ‘real life’.

1) It’s possible … unless you’ve decided it’s not.

When we just started to think about the idea of travelling with our two-year-old daughter around the world, including to some of the least developed lands on the planet, we were scared by our thoughts too. Not to mention the effects to the grandparents. Now we’ve completed the trip and are back home sound and safe, I can assure everyone that it’s entirely possible.

280 days. 12 countries. 3 continents. 64 beds. 18 flights, countless buses and boat rides. These are statistics that could look terrifying, especially counting a terrible-two in the picture. But forgetting statistics, it’s as simple as 3 meals a day, a bed (or two) to sleep at night, and a lot of discovery in the between. The world is so much smaller than how it could feel like, although in another way much more grandeur than how it could feel like.

Dream is the most dangerous thing, and also the most magic thing. A few times we met young couples on the road travelling around the world because ‘everyone is telling us to get this done before we settle and have kids’, who then said ‘ok, it’s inspiring to see people are travelling with young children’. I consider this as the best compliment we could get.

2) Limits are there … to be pushed.

Before we started, we had no idea how long a bus ride was too long a bus ride for Nina and for us. The first bus we took lasted two hours and that was some of the longest two hours in my life, with a toddler jumping up and down and all over the place. Then circumstances came when we had to take a 3-hour bus a week later. Surprisingly it got better. Then 4 hours went ok. I thought we hit our limit when we survived a 6-hour journey in a crowded, old, non-air-conditioned school-style bus along one of the most bumpy and the least travelled roads in Bolivian mountains. Surprisingly Nina claimed she wanted more! And she got it. Some time later, we boarded an overnight bus in Colombia. 16 hours. Who would have thought we could go that far, and still be here to write about it!

The reward was some of the most stunning landscape I’ve ever seen in my life, in places I would never have thought to bring a toddler with me to. And also the confidence that the further we push the limit, the bigger the comfort zone becomes.

3) Less is more.

We left home with 2 check-in luggage (one suitcase, one 60L backpack), 2 hand luggage (two day bags), and 1 pram. It was hard to decide what to pack, trust me. At the end I packed 3 t-shirts, 3 long-sleep shirts, 1 jacket, 3 pairs of pants, 1 skirt, 2 pairs of shoes, 1 pair of thong (flip flop for my non-Aussie friends), some underwear and socks. I packed the most versatile, lightest, easiest-to-dry type of clothing that I had.

I survived. Yes of course I could do with a fancier dress for that dinner in the New York restaurant. Yes of course we had some difficulties. But never once the difficulty was related to the lack of possessions we had.

We once took a mini bus in a small border town between Argentina and Bolivia. All our luggage had to go onto the bus roof except the day bags because there was not enough room up there. Inside the bus it was so small and so crowded that my legs didn’t move during the 2 hours trip and I still had to find room for the day bags. Another time, we had to drag all our luggage along a dirt road to catch a border-crossing boat between Costa Rica and Nicaragua, while Nina didn’t want to walk and refused to go into the pram. That road seemed going on infinitely. At times like that, I wished we could bring even less things with us.

It’s hard, I admit, not to be able to possess some of the most insanely beautiful crafts and souvenirs we saw during the trip, esp in South America. Just thinking about their markets made me drool. But we had strict rules of not buying anything unless if one existing thing went. We sticked to it. Come to think of it, we bought perhaps 5 local craft items, and only 1 of them is purely decorative (I negotiated HARD with Nicolas on that one) and all others were useful in daily life.

Now that we came back to the comfort of home in Sydney, we started to unpack all our worldly possessions. I realized that half of my wardrobe could be gone, without me even realizing they were not there anymore. Books that I won’t read again could go too. Before we left we always complained we didn’t have enough storage space, but now we got rid of a cabinet altogether, and there were still empty space inside some cabinets. Dare I say that at least half of the possession in an average household was untouched in the last year, or more. Look around, I know most of you will nod.

The less we had, the less we needed to worry about maintaining them, finding space to display them, and storing them. And the more time and energy we could put into things that really matters. Quality of life is not, and should never be, proportional to the amount of possession we have. That’s an important lesson I learnt.

4) Seeing is believing.

The normal reaction to ‘we went to Colombia’ was that ‘are you crazy’ look. I would have had the same look before I knew better. Isn’t it all about drug dealing, gun shots, and kidnapping? I can now say confidently that Colombia was as safe as, if not safer than, any other South America countries. We met some of the most generous people there. I felt in love with a small colonial town called Barichara. It’s a country of rich cultures and wonderful landscapes. Happily for the country – sadly for our bank account – it’s one of the most economically developed and expensive countries to travel in the region. I was grateful that we met people who introduced the country to us, and I was glad that we decided it’s worthwhile to do some research and made the move (we changed our tickets). It turned out to be one of the highlights of our trip.

Sometimes we allowed the little (and often biased) information from the news and lack of knowing take over our imagination. Sometimes, we allowed other’s opinion become our decision. Fortunately, the reality is often different. Do the research, and go find out by yourself.

5) Things always work out in the end.

One of our biggest concerns before we left was whether our house could be rented out while we were away. We were told once and again that 9 months was a weird period to rent, and the market didn’t respond well to a furnished house in our neighbourhood. When we had our farewell party just two days before we left, the house remained on the market. Christmas was approaching and no one was renting during holiday, according to our agent. We prepared ourselves for the worst, even though we felt we did all that we could. Then it all just happened. We were able to hand the keys over to the first group of tenants before we drove off to the airport 2 days later. The house was rented out during the whole duration of our trip and vacated just 10 days before we returned. It worked out in the end.

Travel burn-out hit me, hard, at an unexpected time in an unexpected place. 5 months into our travel, while staying in a lovely hostel with a lush tropical garden and a swimming pool with a pool bar in a resort town of Costa Rica, I felt tired and restless. In a place where most people considered heaven on earth, I dreaded the idea of having to decide, yet one more time, where to go next, which place to stay, which restaurant to go, and which site to visit. The only thing I desired at that particular moment was to getting on with my day without having to make decisions. So we just stayed put for a few extra days. I rested, and my brain too. Then I was ready to go again, with the reignited curiosity and enthusiasm, but a more peaceful mind.

Things always work out in the end, with due efforts. Have faith in it. It’s something that I learnt over and over again, and learnt to remind myself over and over again, especially when going got tough.

[D119] How Has Nina Been Coping

Standard

Almost 120 days after we officially started our round-the-world trip, 5 countries stamped in the passport and 21 different beds later, I came to the conclusion that kids are just unpredictable creatures – at least Nina is!

Uyuni 01

What I thought would be the most difficult to cope – changing beds so often in new room/country/temperature – Nina had absolutely no issue with except the very first few days in France (largely due to the time zone changes between Australia and France I suspect). She has so far slept on 21 different beds – sometimes with her own bed, sometimes in a cot, sometimes on a mattress on the floor, occasionally sharing a bed with us. Regardless the bedding arrangement, as soon as the light was out in the room and door was closed, she promptly falls onto her bed and is ready for her night. I cannot be thankful enough for this priceless gift that Nina is granting us!

But then, sometimes, in the most unexpected moment, Nina would become the most horrible creature on the entire planet. Some days, nothing but taking off her pyjama, changing her nappy and putting her day clothes on would take more than an hour, with screaming and physical wrestling. At days like this, by the time we were ready for breakfast, I was exhausted, and seriously asked Nicolas why we were doing this to ourselves.

Nina, as all other children I guess, had a natural talent in keeping herself entertained with the most unexpected objects. While we walked on the most mundane street in BsAs, she could spend incredible amount of time joyously walking on and off the steps in front of apartment buildings. Lately she is in love with wooden sticks mostly branches fallen off the tress. She would laugh with excitement when we found one for her, and even more so if we found two at once! Many times we couldn’t keep the sticks with us (well, for a 6-hour bus journey for example), she would constantly ask where her sticks, and we had to promise her once and again that we would get her new sticks when we arrive.

Talking about long distance bus trips … I was very concerned with having to going through this with Nina, as well as the well-being of other passengers. Nina was all over the place on a 2-hour bus journey in Uruguay already, and I thought that was the sky limit. Then Nina surprised us again and again – she was ok with a 3-hour one, then a 4-hour one. The record so far was a 6-hour extremely bumpy bus ride in a Bolivian version of tourist bus (reading: no air condition, no reclinable chairs, etv) – she not only endured it but seemed actually having enjoyed it.

One of the most challenging aspect of travelling with such a young child – as far as I am concerned – is the fact that you are stuck with each other 24*7. She needs other kids to play with. I need ‘me time’ for my own sanity from time to time. But the fact is that we are constantly on the move, and it’s not realistic to get reliable babysitters in a country where you don’t even speak their language properly, so there is just no escape. After a full-on day, there is still research to be done for the next destination, hotel to be booked, bus ticket to be bought, luggage to be packed, diary to be written, emails to be replied. Sometimes, it just feels overwhelming. And why the update of this blog has been slow (I’m trying my best still!).

But then it’s all made up by the fact that we get to discover the world together. And I as a parent get to witness how she’s learning, changing, building up her language, while getting to know the world with her parents. It’s a privilege that I cherish.

 

P.S: to follow our RTW experience: Trilingual Family blog, or join Trilingual Family facebook group

D30 – 35 Antibes/France

Standard

(Note – I hesitated a lot to publish my quick notes of diaries as-is onto this blog. I would have loved to be able to write specifically for the blog, ideally, so that it’s a bit less ‘rough’ and more thoughtful. However I realized – after one month of keep trying but in vain  – that it’s just too time consuming to do so hence unrealistic during the trip. It’s only going to do absolutely no favour to my original intention to document and share our trip. As such, I am going to, at least for the time being, to post my quick notes almost as is first (just deleted some purely personal/private references). So the upcoming few posts are going to be catch-up work. You will have to accept my apologies in advance for some obvious rush work).

Nina 2 yr - 0

D30, Jan 15, Antibes

Road trip today from St martin de la Cluze to Antibes. What a beautiful trip! From snowy mountains (we crossed Vercors through le Col de la Croix Haute of 1200m), it was apparently snowing last night, all white everywhere, -2c at some point. Mont Aiguille was finally behind us. It was where Nicolas brought me and 2 other friends to mountain climb and I had the most impressive rappel in my life – 50 metres straight down, and at some point I was in the void, or in the air literally.  We were relieved though to have passed the Col as we won’t sure if it would be too much snow to drive through. All these little villages dotted around the valley, the mountains etc.

Then slowly landscape changed, into valley only, snow disappeared, olive trees appeared. Houses of yellow facade replaced the houses with volets (wooden foldable double window to keep the house warm). We were visually officially in Provence. Chateau became more often and accessible. More people walked or sat outdoor in cafe. Stopped at Sisteron for lunch. Set menu of confit de canard for 9 euro, great deal. Lovely town. Parking was surprisingly free between 12 and 2pm! While we got closer to Cote d’Azur, the temperature went up to 14c. Sunny, impressive forms of clouds. Well maintained highway, reasonable toll charges. Suddenly I was correcting myself for saying in the past that the country felt decaying. This time, I didn’t hear much winging. Even the public toilet was very proper (even saw a very innovative design of combining water/hand soap/dryer into one device).

Why people choose to live where they live? When you can fairly easily travel from place to place nowadays. How many of us live where we live by chance or by accident? A person, some sort of romance? a desire just to see? accidentally passing through somewhere and felt in love? Where we will all end up? The questions of my life! We were asked so many times so far, where we will be after our RTW. Most people surprised when our answer was so certain, Sydney. Won’t you fall in love with somewhere else?

Will we?

It’s a long road trip for Nina, being strapped for 5 hours. Suffice to say that I should have prepared more toys and books.

At 4pm, we arrived the sunny, warm, crowded and visually prosperous Antibes, to meet Monique my mother in law. We will be staying with her for the next week.

And our real estate agent found us a tenant just today, who were moving in tomorrow! It’s all happening. Very stressful morning before hitting the road to sigh paper, answer questions etc. But everything falling into place as they say!!

Monique prepared our bed using my old linen (what I had in Grenoble a decade ago). So cute.

Delicious pot au feu.

D Antibes 05

D31, Jan 16. Antibes.

We were welcomed by a weather similar to that of la Capelle, except in a slightly warmer fashion. It rained and it would rain every single day during the week that we were here. Hence trying to find indoor entertainment. Good luck in an apartment! Playing football in the garage did the trick.

At 5pm we had an appointment with a generalist for Nina’s vaccine of typhoid (she couldn’t get it in Sydney before we left with other vaccines because they would only give typhoid vaccines for kids above 2 years old). She was more a Buddhist than a doctor I have to say! Nothing was pressing, all could take time. To find a band-it, it took her good 10 min and sorting through the paper in her drawer of the last 10 yrs, but in vain. She finally gave up and asked the doctor next door who shared the same cabinet. She didn’t ask a single question nor gave indication of what side effects the vaccine might have. She did though talk about the trips to Argentina etc. Her waiting room was quite charming.

French President’s romance was rather entertaining for the whole nation. Now French people had not only a first girlfriend but also a first mistress! Quite disturbing when it comes to political etiquette. Yet it couldn’t happen in a more suitable country, where their precedent presidents had far more quantity of mistresses, or just went through one divorce and one marriage and one birth of child during presidency. French public had just fun of it. It provided the headlines for weeks and the raw materials for numerous talk shows and political debates. Funnily his support rate didn’t go down but went up. Only if Clinton could live in France!

D32 Jan 17, Antibes

This morning I was granted the right to have a walk, on my own!! They took Nina with them to Casino for grocery, I went for a walk in the old city. I loved the narrow winding lanes, the doors, the stone walls and houses in the small alleys in the old city. I have always loved walking around, esp in a new place, and sometimes could walk for endless hours and days. I love the joy of surprise. Ever since the birth of Nina I wasn’t able to do this at all, and I much appreciated the few hours of being able to do it. Time for myself became the ultimate luxury. I need the time to feel no one else – not a mother, not a wife, not a daughter, not a neighbor, not a teammate – but myself. It’s also time to be taken by surprises and let the unknown inspire me.  I need such time from time to time.

Evening we went to Nicolas’ old school friend Ch for dinner. Another lovely soiree, especially for Nina. She ate and ate and finished two pieces of cake – a very delicious and good looking fruit cake. Ch’s family was a trilingual family too (French, Danish, English). There are really quite a few multilingual families around.

Another record bed time for Nina: 22:30. She behaved rather quite well and didn’t even fall asleep on the way back home. This child adapted fairly well to the changes so far.

Nina 2 yrs - 03

D33 Jan 18, Antibes.

Nina’s 2yo birthday today! Can u believe it has been two yrs since that long day?!

Nico made a cake for her daughter, like last year. I guess it would become a tradition. This time it’s a round cake with clementine sauce. Pretty. Nina liked more blowing her candles though.

Last year we said instead of buying Nina a birthday gift, we would rather offer her a birthday experience. This year we were already doing a round the world, but I still would love a special experience for her birthday. The torrential rain limited our choices quite  bit as we had to opt for indoor options. Hence we went to the Musee de Picasso à Antibes. I liked the museum (equally the Picasso museum in Paris) when I visited several years ago. It’s tugged in a most amazing part of the old town of Antibes, overlooking the Mediterranean sea on the one side, the old town the other side. A stone building, 3 stories. There is only one level however that was dedicated to Picasso’s works, painting,  ceramics and sculptures. Between 1946 and 1949 when Picasso lived in the area he had part of the building as his studio. The other level to other artists work. The jewel was the garden though as far as I was concerned, dotted with cactuses and sculptures by Miro and others, overlooking the Mediterranean coast. Even under heavy rain, it was still pleasant walking in such a pleasant garden.  Nina’s favorite was the stairs though.

In the morning we went to the food market in the old town. I never got tired of markets. This one was another particularly charmng one, presenting everything that we could dream of Provence and Mediterranean: lavender, olives, sausage, tapenade, fruits.

We had freshly made spinach and ricotta ravioli for lunch, and confit de canard for dinner (again! Did I already mention that this was one of my favorite French dishes?!). Nina was over petit Swiss now, but still fanatic about oranges/mandarins/clementines.

How many 2 years one has in a lifetime? At 2, Nina has been to 5 countries (Australia, Fiji, China, New Zealand, France). At this rate, when she reaches 20, she would have gone to 50 countries. That’s what I’ve got in my bucket list of my lifetime!

D Antibes 04

D34, Jan 19, Antibes, Italy

Despite the rain, or because of the rain, we decided to go to Italy for a pizza. Only 60+km and an hour away, it’s the Italian border. Ventimiglia was the first city after the border, and a quick glance over the guide book told us there was an old city, so we stopped. It’s a decaying but still rather charming old old town. Narrow, deep and high laneways connected  the narrow buildings. Laundry hanging outside the windows reminded me of China. The laundry was under the rain for goodness sake! Only in places like Italy, there would be an  overly decorated mirror on the external wall!

The cathedral just finished the mass service when we arrived just after 12, but the organ player was still playing. Nina asked for more after each piece. The crypt had some beautiful crafted stones excavated from the same site during renovation (so as I understood from the Italian notice).

It’s time for our pizza! But it was nowhere to be found. The old city was so quiet that hardly any shop was open. We were almost giving up, when we saw an open sigh from a pizzeria/ristorente! It was apparently on the petit routard… Well I should have known better when I saw the sign, but we were quite desperate at that point. When the waiter came to take the order I was told pizza was served only in the evening!! What kind of restaurant it was. We settled for gnocchi, risotto, lasagna, and spaghetti. All other tables were occupied by French speaking population, likely all disappointed by not having the pizza they came for.

We went for a walk along the beach in the newer part of the city. Black sand, black cobbles, but lots of tree branches and rubbish washed onto the beach. Quite sad. Under rain not many people was walking so Nina could run and threw stones on the beach. Really kids didn’t need much to have fun.

We pushed onto Bordighera for another 10 min, but the rain did take its toll and we decided it’s not worth getting off the car anymore. So we decided to do a u turn and stopped at Monaco because I said I had never actually visited it.

Of course there was the casino, the tourists, the pretty cars, the luxury shops everywhere, but of course it’s not my type of city. Nina decided to push her pram through the raining city. I was tempted to visit the gilded casino inside (for once!) but as they didn’t allow little person under 18, I skipped it. My chance of becoming a millionaire overnight was just gone.

The drive along Cote d’Azur was a pretty one even under rain. But from the evening news it seems there were lots of flooding, damages and accidents this week due to heavy rain. We apparently chose the best time to visit.

D Antibes 02

D35, Jan 20, Antibes.

No more rain today!! Although still cloudy mostly, the occasional sun was most welcome after 4 days of torrential rain.

Went for a walk to Juan les Pins in the morning with just 3 of us. Had lots of fun running around the sand. The city was so quiet, most houses were closed whole day (as volets were shut)- this was indeed a holiday city.

After lunch we four did a drive around the Cape d’Antibes, passing through quite a few gorgeous houses and the famous Eden Roc Hotel. Mental note: would be better to do a bike tour next time. Walked in the old town of Antibes. The most elaborated  pastry/chocolate shop ever, called Jean Luc Pele. 100% black chocolate!! Definitely not my cup of tea.

Then we drove to the lighthouse and chapelle on top of the hill. From there you had a really good view onto the city. The Chappell was perhaps the only one i have visited so far which was so heavily decorated by small photos and painting of all sorts. Not the typical kind of church.

Then we had a most amazing sunset view. Certainly looked even more spectacular after a week of clouds.

After dinner (moules frites), Nicolas and i decided to take advantage of the last night here with an in-house babysitting to go for a nightlife 😊 the city was even more dead at night. Only a few bars open. We opted for a rather trendy modern vin bar to finish off our stay at Antibes.

P.S: to follow our RTW experience: Trilingual Family blog, or join Trilingual Family
facebook group

Video – Nina’s First Enconter With Snow

Video

It was on the first day of January 2014 when we went to Semnoz near Annecy/France for an outing of Luge, with A (Nicolas’ godson) and S (A’s dad). Nina seemed very intense on the video – she was indeed. She was probably getting her head around the cold white thing everywhere around her, and the speed with which she slide down on it.

The great thing about Semnoz – a so-described rather small ski station by French standard – was that there was an automatic belt that brought you, your child, and the luge etc uphill after you all went downhill with the luge. So zero effort was required from the parents. Top stuff!

P.S: to follow our RTW experience: Trilingual Family blog, or join Trilingual Family facebook group.