First, an apology. I thought I would write some posts from France, but it just didn’t happen. Partly from being busy every day and partly from getting a very bad cold while I was there.
But I did try to keep some notes (and I have some photos), which I will use to write the next few posts.
I’m curious by nature (duh) and when I travel that curiosity comes out in spades! And France has always fascinated me.
First, the famous “French paradox” — how do they eat all that butter, bread, cheese, and wine and not get fat? (I think I have some answers, by the way.)
Second, how come the French get such great food (and we don’t, even with our local farmer’s markets.) Everywhere we went (south and north) there were lots of inexpensive and delicious raspberries, cherries, and strawberries in local markets. Not farmer’s markets as we know them where the producer is selling his/her own produce, but “street” markets where vendors are selling amazing fruit vegetables, fish, meat on “market day” in local Parisian neighborhoods. Not sure I have the answer to this one (yet),
But, first things first. Some photos and narrative.
We started in Lisbon — but we were so jet lagged and sleep deprived that there are no photos of this city, one of our favorites.
After the first day in Lisbon, we flew to Marseille. I had never been there despite three trips to France and this was a Not So Curious Husband’s “must do”.
What a great city! It was a Unesco Heritage City in 2013 and they worked like the dickens to clean it up some. And it shows. It is vibrant and lively while being sophisticated (great shopping and less expensive than Paris) with a real sense of being Mediterranean.
One of the things I learned about myself on this trip is that I am not as comfortable as I once was in big cities. So Marseille, being big but not the biggest, fit the bill perfectly.
And we were there when France was still in the running for the World Cup. One evening, as we were sitting at a restaurant along the big U shaped harbor along with thousands of French people glued to the televisions in every restaurant and bar, everyone started to sing the Marseillaise, the French National Anthem. Still get goose bumps. Sitting in Marseille hearing the Marseillaise. What a great start to our trip to France!
Here are some photos.
Les Acanthes, our B&B was just lovely. We had a big bedroom (with linen sheets, oh la la) and a big bathroom. Breakfast was delicious with bread, butter (speaking of oh la la — and the French really say this), coffee, jam, and either croissants or a brioche sucre (with sugar) or brioche plein (without, my favorite). Although not in the “center” of Marseille, it was a very short walk to the clean and efficient subway that took us right into town. Lovely . . .