Shopping, Eating and Exploring

Come along with me and discover some off-the beaten paths in Southwest France

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

It's Spring Somewhere

Even though the weatherman says there is snow on the ground in fifty states, here in the Bay Area, it is 70 degrees; trees are blooming, daffodils are up, and all is right with my world. While we enjoy the early Spring weather in California, a I planning trips to France. If you are interested in coming along on a trip, please email me, and I will get you detailed information.

May and June are great months to visit France. For those of you seeking brocantes and antique fairs, it is a spectacular time. In May, there are no less than three special holidays, which means three extra shopping days. Those same holidays may wreak havoc with normal travel plans; but if you know where to go, these holidays can be a lot of fun.

A couple of years ago, we were shopping the May markets. The weather was not cooperative....rain was a real problem. They don't generally cancel a large market, but the smaller vide grieners can be a real waste of time in inclement weather. This May, we decided to visit Libourne, which had a small market, and what was advertised as an "Omelet Giante". This was an omelet made with 1,001 ouefs (eggs). They had tents and most of the market was covered, except in true French fashion, the giant omelet pan was exposed to the elements. Needless to say, it turned out a little runny. It did not dampen the spirits of the locals, or maybe that was the wine.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Talking Politics

I usually don't talk politics in social situations while in France. It's not that I don't like to talk about politics, I just don't want to offend. Here at home, I have some friends, whom I enjoy, but their politics are so far from mine, that we generally leave it alone. But it is always interesting to hear how people who live in Europe feel about America and our politics.

Several years ago, at a neighbors barbecue in France, Monique, turned to me and said, in French, "and what about George Bush?" I responded, "and what about Chirac?" At least George Bush hasn't been brought up on charges yet. I never feel it's proper, when I am visiting another country to bad mouth my president. (even if I didn't vote for him)

The other evening I had dinner with my French tutor and her family. Discussion was quite lively. I was really glad to learn that it was the French who introduced democracy to Europe, and that was a reason the British were often at odds with the French. It's great, even when you live in a new country, to be proud of your native heritage. I suppose it's a good thing that each country is allowed to write their own history.

Today, a couple of photos of a famous Frenchman, alas, not a politician, more a would-be lover; Cyrano d'Bergerac....I took these in Bergerac, I try to snap one every time I visit this town. Sometimes his nose is there, sometimes it's not!