A bit late or very early?

Did I mention that time is ‘different’ here?  Certain things, thank goodness, are still sacrosanct, like stopping for a proper meal at 12.30. It is called lunch and gives you time away from work. It helps your body’s metabolism so that by the evening you can have a salad and fruit and yoghurt ( you will have had glorious gateaux at 5pm, no later). It works for me anyway.  Just saying…

And when there is no greve (strike), the trains run on time.  However, if you arrange to meet a French friend for coffee or tea, allow 20 mins either way and never arrive on time for a dinner party. I was once,  politely but firmly refused entry to my neighbour’s apartment when showing up at 6pm for drinks.  Confused, I stood in the hallway until others arrived, 15 minutes later, then sidled in behind them.

 As to Christmas. Well, I am happy to say that it doesn’t really start to get annoying until the first Sunday in December when shops are allowed to open. ( I am sure this is going to change…with McDos everywhere…what hope do we have?)

So you could say, Christmas has a slow start here but when does it finish? My local store still has its Christmas tree up, taking up valuable space? And Christmas crackers on the shelves! Does the 6th of January mean nothing here? Well yes it does. It means a cake in the shape of a crown, with spices and glace fruit. There are huge debates every year as to the authentic recipe and shape…

As to street decorations? They often stay up until February. So, Santa still perching on rooftops should be no surprise. I will have to pop back in a few days to see if he is till there? I wonder if there is a record for the amount of time decorations stay up? I am going to guess there is a village somewhere that never takes them down. Think of the time and effort saved each year…I am sure they will argue. Be interesting to know what happens in other countries…Anyone?

Time is different here

You can come down now!

3 Responses to “A bit late or very early?”
  1. Lots of Christmas lights still up in Portland. I had no idea we were so Mediterranean–or quite so laid back–although according to the new TV comedy “Portlandia”–“Portland is the place where young people go to retire. “

  2. John Booth says:

    Love it, maybe we should merge all the celebrations seemlessly, put Easter eggs on the tree as it gets closer. That sort of thing

  3. John West says:

    So true Helen. Its not unusual here in the Charente for Xmas decorations and rooftop santas to be up until well getting on for Easter – I dont think it’s anthing to do with “tradition” … more about their very, very , laid back attitude to actually getting round to doing something ! .. wonderful.

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