Lost in France

Fabulous strawberries and lemons

Whenever I go to foreign climes I always like to try and visit a local market. Markets tell you about the place the people and the culture in a way that no guide book ever could. In the case of France it’s all about the FOOD. No where else can you find such a mouthwatering display of fresh fruit and vegetables,  cheese, and seafood.

The Zulus are coming!


They even have Zulu tomatoes which you will never see in Tescos.

Even if you could get them in blighty you wouldn’t be allowed to call them Zulus – they would probably have to be South African ethnic minority tomatoes.

Disabled lobsters

The seafood is spectacular and the French devotion to cheese exceptional. There’s no point trying to stay on the skinny train when you’re in this neck of the woods. 

The Bayeux tapestry is a world famous Normandy attraction, a most fascinating and impressive piece of early propaganda making William look good at the battle of Hastings. For me the most exceptional thing about it is not so much the story it tells, although this is amazing in itself, but how detailed and in fact modern, is the style and beautiful colour palette of this incredible artwork. Who drew it – who sewed it? That is a matter of debate. It was most likely done by girls though, which makes that part of the Bayeux tapestry story a little under reported. I salute the sewers!Someone who can draw a horse falling in battle and make it come to life with coloured wool is an anglo saxon artiste indeed.

Apple brandy is a popular product
A ‘galette’ – a savoury crepe – yum

Normandy is famous for an number of other things. They grow a lot of apples in this part of France and from them, the French  make a selection of extra delicious alcoholic apple related products. Normandy Cider, Calvados or Calva liqueur the famous apple brandy which goes nicely in your coffee, and the most delicious by-product of all – Pommeau – which is apple port and is quite to die for. Normandy cider is as far away from the Woodpecker/Strongbow beverage we are subjected to in the UK, as CAMP ever was from coffee. You can easily while away the afternoon with your savoury galette and your bottle of chilled cider and then doze off in front of your log burner back in your Normandy cottage. When it rains however it rains with a vengance, and then you may thank the world of technology for the invention of Wifi as you while away the blustery morning googling all those things you wished you’d had the time to find the answer to in your normal busy, un-French life. Did dragons really exist? Why haven’t crocodiles evolved? And the biggest question of all – whatever happened to Kevin Costner’s movie career?