So last night we thought we would explore the villages around la Barde where we are staying in south west France. This is fairly rural France and so far it’s proved fairly funny in terms of getting used to the local customs! We have been enlightened to the fact that everything seems to be closed on a Sunday and a Monday (or very limited opening hours at that) We did manage to get to bakery early and get croissants and bread on Sunday and then to the supermarket and get bits and bobs. Thank goodness we did as by the evening we went to eat out and everything was closed! By 9pm after driving around from village to village we gave up and went back and cook what we had bought. Today is Wednesday and it’s a religious public holiday and everything closes at 12 noon today, so we have stocked up and having a bbq!
Last night we managed to have a meal out. And this was excellent. This was a local small village, La Roche Chalalis. The restaurant was le Bontemps, with indoor and outdoor seating. The menu was only in French, so we got there eventually. As usual we did make the mistake of ordering medium cooked steaks which obviously turned up rare! This came with a thick omelette of leeks and cheese which was heavenly with grilled tomatoes and truffle butter. Delicious.
The other custom we are trying to get our children to adhere to is the French rule of quiet time between 12-2pm everyday. Yes you read the right, quiet time everyday for 2 hours. Therefore in the pool etc they have to be quiet, no mean feat with four of them! Also this means no lawnmowers, powertools etc and no building work. Apparently it used to be three hours but this reduced recently to two, and the French do stick to it! It’s also all day on a Sunday!! They are so chilled out over here….can you imagine this at home?