Around France

A Fine Friendship, But No Romance

There’s an old song with the lyrics, “It’s a fine friendship, but no romance.” Or something like that. Maybe I’m making it up because Google’s never heard of it.

Nevertheless, it’s a good title for today’s post..

You see, every time I say I’ve met a new male friend, my good buddies who read the blog get the idea there it must be a budding romance. This 6-week adventure to France and Spain is not intended to be a take-off on “Eat, Pray, Love.”  There’s been plenty of eating … and more to come. There’s been very little praying… although that’s bound to change tomorrow when I get out on the highway for the first time by myself. And love? My hope, as trite as it sounds, is to learn to love myself.

There’s a quote in Kathryn Stockett’s book and movie, “The Help” that I want badly to internalize: “You is kind. You is smart. You is important.” On this journey where I know no one, I don’t speak the language, and …I have a terrible sense of direction, I’m learning more and more to like myself. Now, back to food.

Today’s Best Bite

Aged cheese, cured saucisson, and mustard from the Aux Plaisirs des Halles, the indoor market in NimesFood in France

Aux Plaisirs des Halles
As you may recall, today was the appointed day to drive with Geoffrey to the nearby town of Nimes. Our main purpose was to visit the indoor market and have lunch at one of his favorite cafes. He drove his well-worn Citroen and gave me driving lessons along the way since I was to drive back.

In France, cars entering a roadway from the right have the right-of-way. That means you have to watch very carefully because someone may pull out from dome obscure side road and sideswipe you.

We arrived at the indoor marketplace, which is located just outside the center of Nimes. It is attached to a multi-level, modern shopping mall and parking garage. The area surrounding the shopping complex looks a lot like many other commercial downtown areas in the world, with busy, narrow streets.

Aux Plaisirs des Halles reminded me of the City Market in Cleveland or other huge marketplaces where vendors have permanent stalls for their food items. (Sorry, no pictures. I was too busy buying the cheese and sausages shown in Today’s Best Bite.)

The market was closing since it was close to noon, so we stopped off for a quick flute of champagne at one bar, then onto dejeuner at Le Patio Littre.

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The afternoon’s chatter and stories from Geoffrey are in my head waiting to be spilled out into another day’s blog.

Stay tuned. Geoffrey’s loaned me his clunker car ’til Wednesday. then i get his red Mustang with racing stripes. And to the story here? There is none. Geoffrey is happily engaged to a long time girlfriend. Nevertheless, we’re looking forward to enjoying a fine friendship.


8 replies »

  1. “Stopping off for a flute of champagne” oh I am so envious! What a wonderful trip you are having. I cannot believe all the food. I was wondering if you were photographing people’s plates from other tables or if you all ate all that. What a shame there are no doggie bags, but I am sure it is because the French bring their dogs to dinner with them (as it should be!).

  2. Through you, I am in love with Jeffrey, his car & his fashion sense…and his choice of friends! How could you not adore someone who wears blue & yellow???

  3. Now I need to know, did you go to the Jardins? And the temple etc? Plus I’d like to know which restaurant you went to? The Halles in Nimes actually has the best black olives with garlic in the world! 🙂

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