I was supposed to be going to Avignon and indeed, I was headed that way. But at Portbou, the last station in Spain, the train didn’t continue on as it was supposed to. There was a railway workers’ strike in France. I wish someone had informed me of that before I boarded the train in Figueres and saved me a trip going nowhere.
So, sitting there at Portbou’s 19th century iron-framed train station, I had an hour and a half to consider what I was going to do. This was to be my birthday celebration. I could go home, grab the car keys and drive to Avignon – a trip of several hours. Or, I could hang around locally and take myself out to lunch to a couple of restaurants that I’ve been meaning to try. There is one only minutes from Figueres that has some Michelin stars….
Would I do what so many on Facebook recommend and keep on trying and fighting to achieve my goal? Or would I relax and accept what fate was telling me, not fight it, and enjoy a new plan? In the end, driving that far didn’t feel like what I wanted to do, so there was no visit to Avignon this June; no day trip to Aix-en-Provence to see the Cezanne studio, no lunch at the Guinguette on the Rhone.
Instead there was a fabulous lunch at a beautiful restaurant that I had walked by many times but never entered. Elegant, excellent food, and a splendid view out the huge picture glass window onto the rear garden and city park beyond. What a find! And the next day a very good lunch at a new and elegant cerveseria/tapas bar that included one of my favorites -- tiny squid, battered and fried. Since I don’t like beer I had an excellent local white wine. It wasn’t what I had planned, but it too was good. Sometimes you need a nudge to discover what’s on your doorstep.