13 years ago I was lucky enough to spend a few years living in the south of France. It was a pretty important period of my life. It was the start of my life of travel. I learnt a new language. I got out of my shell and tried new foods, visited new places and learned another countries history and culture. I got drawn in to the 800 year old story of the Cathares, an ancient religion that preached peace, poverty and a life without possessions. They were wiped out by a crusade with many a horror story. This, along with many other tales, buildings, meals and experience turned me into somewhat of a Francophile.
So I wasn't too upset when I ended up back here last week. I flew into Toulouse and everything of my days in France flooded back. The sounds, the smell, the language all reappeared from hibernation in my tiny brain. The funny thing was I never lived in Toulouse. I travelled there a few times. I picked people up & dropped them off at the airport and travelled around the city centre a few times; once with an ex-girlfriend and once with some colleagues. This third time I was joined by another old colleague and we had a coffee in the town square. The square is known as Place De Capitole. It was a little full and had been the site of a market that day so it could only be shot from a few slightly awkward angles.
Although the feel of southern France felt familiar the centre of Toulouse was not. I barely remembered Place de Capitole and the surrounding streets, but it somehow felt like I was home. Home for me is no longer unique. I search out those places that's make me feel welcome and happy. The whole world seems like a better home these days than one tiny corner of the world.
But right now the south of France is getting a little more favouritism than the other places that hold a place in my heart and feel like home.