Tuesday, 28 November 2006

La Belle France

In an effort to get away from the nightmare that is commercial Christmas I spent Monday in Lille.

It really is a beautiful city and I had the opportunity to catch up with the wonderful Pascal (a friend of mine who is an actor and has recently starred opposite both Juliette Binoche and Jean Reno) and enjoy a typical 3-hour French lunch. The city always has a Ferris wheel at Christmas time which is illuminated by thousands of fairly lights when the sun sets. It also has a cultural celebration theme in the month leading up to Christmas, and this year it is all things Indian - hence the bejewelled spectacular statues of elephants adorning the boulevards. It really did put the Christmas lights here in Cambridge to shame....

Also the French seem to have a more laid-back attitude to Christmas than us Brits. Whilst I was being elbowed out of the way by a 'sweet little old lady' so she could get at the Lambrusco at Tesco Bar Hill this lunch time I found myself yearning for the wide alleys and patient musings of the French when shopping at le supermarche Auchan. I love Christmas - but all this shopping lark is a mystery to me!

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