Our Second Day in France

We awoke to a cool and damp day but as it is our holiday we don’t mind that much.  We did some basic shopping then had a drive out to the countryside.  There is a distinct lack of wild life in this area compared to some places we have stayed, the only things of interest have been a Little Egret and a Blackbird stealing a cherry from a tree.  We wandered around a town, Combourg, where we stopped for coffee and Calvados for me and a beer for D.  We were not charged for the coffee, apparently usual at that bar. We sat outside in the SUNSHINE (!) and saw something that I had never seen before – a drunken French man, in broad daylight.  Back to the Gite for lunch of (packet) soup, forest mushrooms which was not bad at all and some sunflower seed bread.  Costieres de Nimes again.  Reading, relaxing and snoozing – bliss!

For dinner I cooked the Flétan (Halibut) I’m not sure if it was a young one or not but the texture was much lighter than the last one we ate from Norfolk, perfect fresh peas and overdone (my fault) potatoes.  I made a small sauce of cider, local, stock granules and Herbes de Provance.  D said it should have been thickened – he was right.

Our starter was a little Quercy melon, so ready to eat that it had perfumed the house all day, and Bayonne ham, sprinkled with cayenne pepper.  The wine was Cinsault at €1.79 per bottle, delicious it was too!

The supermarkets here don’t refrigerate fruit as we do in England so you don’t have to wait a week for it to ripen. It is mostly locally grown produce sold very soon after harvesting and it makes such a difference to the flavour.  The cherries are so sweet!   The French import some meat and some fish – we could have had Scottish salmon – but mostly they like their stuff home-grown.

We watched some TV but everyone speaks so quickly that it wears me out and I soon turned back to my book and journal.   And so to bed which, by the way, is not only comfortable but also has a duvet – a luxury I’ve never encountered here before.


Toni Anne

a small Welsh woman who left Wales at the age of 18 and has rarely been back since. She has a daughter whom she adores and a partner who lives down the road. Toni studied fine art and, if she didn't have to work to pay the mortgage, would like to paint daily. She enjoys good food and wine but doesn't get the chance to cook very often since her man does most of it. Toni reads a lot, mostly travel and food writing but also enjoys Terry Pratchett's DiscWorld novels. She doesn't watch TV very much but usually has the radio playing, mostly Radio 3 or 4.