Many visitors to that fine country have no understanding of the national psyche of the French. They are a very proud nation with an incredibly rich history and more culture than one might find in a Roquefort cheese. Tourists wrestle with the concept of the entire country closing every day between noon and three. They also don’t follow the reasons for the early start in the day and everything remaining closed on Sunday. The divide is prised open by foreigners who speak loudly in English while affecting a stage French accent “No, garçon, we want a pot of tea for two.” or “Non, J’ai asked for it to be cooked medium. This est rare.”
There are few advantages to getting into the second half of the game of life. One is that the children are now adults. Despite their constant infantile behaviour their willingness to let us go on holidays without them matches up with our willingness to leave them behind. This year, we drove to the south of France on our first child free summer holiday in over 20 years. Continue reading
Living here in Ireland, I know plenty of chaps who get value in their drink by taking an estate car or a ‘white van’ across to France on the ferry to buy wine and beer in bulk at a discount. They travel the minimum distance from the port, load the van and having spent the minimum amount of time away, make their way back home. They succeed in getting cheap drink.
“Hurt! He was stabbed.”
“How deep was the wound?”
“Deep? It went right up to the second ‘f’ in Sheffield.”
Bad people do bad things. Bad knives do bad things too. There are hacked fingers, missing nails and countless soft flesh wounds as a result. Dull steel does damage. I wince at the memory of that awful feeling of the cooks knife slipping off the edge of an onion and into the top of my index finger. Continue reading