Trecking down the quay with a suitcase in tow and a backpack strapped you-know-where in rain-turned-snow, I felt a little a little like Maria von Trapp showing up at the baron’s gate as I wended my way (through street’s where you’d be hard pressed to drive a smart car) to my home for four days, L’aubergine Rouge. What a treat to arrive and see my name written in chalk on the faded blue door. Eureka!
My wrap on the door elicited a lovely female voice calling, “I’ll be right down,” in English. Nice, but a bit of a surprise. Much like the name Pat, Jeri doesn’t give a clear gender clue, especially if you’re traveling in a foreign country where names can be deceiving. My new friend in Arles, born in California, gave me a royal welcome on behalf of Eric and Gustavo, who were working late that day. In less than an hour, she’d not only told me about the B&B, Arles and how to get my MAC working better in France, we’d also told our life stories in a nutshell.
By eight then night, Eric and Gustavo were home from working and began to break me in to French life in Arles. After Gustavo(from Honduras) and I had chatted our best in Spanish and American accented French, Eric gently put me through the paces, questioning and correcting me only in French. I had asked for it.The middle of the night brought a couple of sleepless hours, in which I resorted to rehearsing French sentences: a semi-futile use of time, I promise.
For more info about L’aubergine rouge, I offer their web site. It’s full of great photos which are perfect representations of this little gem.