Bonjour to day 1 of my blog!
After a very long and busy year helping lots of students improve their French, for exams or for travel ; after listening to your wonderful stories of how you never cease to enjoy French cheeses, wines, landscapes, people, traditions in France, etc… finally it’s my turn to be here!!! En vacances en Bourgogne!
Dad used to be a pâtissier, so guess what I really look forward to when I am back? Les escargots, les tartes aux mirabelles, la Cancoillote, l’Epoisses, les viandes de Charolais, les vins de Pouilly et Sancerre…. Miam! I won’t lie, it is great to see family and friends, but the first days are definitely spent re-connecting with the various foods that marked my childhood, and even though you can find almost any French food you like in the UK these days, they are not prepared by Papy!
There are minor changes to be seen at each visit, like a nouveau sens de circulation in the town centre or parking gratuit en août -both implemented by the new maire to ease traffic and ultimately attract more shoppers in what has become a very sleepy centre. I remember going shopping every Wednesday and Saturdays with my friends in town when younger (pas d’école les mercredis!) and the rue piétonne being noire de monde. A thing from the past! Now most of the interesting magasins are situated on the zone industrielle ; not a bad idea as you can easily park, but as a result the centre-ville has been abandonned….. or is slowly changing into a museum-town… where one can appreciate, I guess, the astonishing 11th century St-Etienne church, the recently renovated cathedral (and with brand new stainglass windows) , the 2 historical manufactures de faïence and their beautiful shops (I recommend the Faience museum!), the Carmel and museum Ste Bernadette (her body is diplayed in a glass coffin in the chapel), the old doors to the city : la Porte St Nicolas and la Porte du Croux, and much much more….
Definitely a must for those of you who like old stones…