Thursday, July 19, 2018

Coffee and Markets and Les Bleus

On many mornings, my husband walks the half mile to town and meets with a friend for coffee.
It's a nice, retired guy activity. And I am thrilled that Earl has made friends he can hang out with when I'm working or lounging on the beach with my own friends. And being isolated with only our own company in the early months of our France life put stress on our relationship.
So it's a sigh of relief to find that we both can pursue friendships and hobbies on our own.
Wednesday morning as I was getting dressed, I heard my husband texting with his friend Jack. Earl often speaks messages rather than typing them.
"I'm wearing a light blue t shirt and khaki shorts," he texted.
And I laughed to myself, remembering my own middle school and high school days when I would coordinate outfits with my friends.
Earl and Jack aren't trying to dress alike though, they're trying to make sure they aren't dressed identically, like they were on Sunday morning when we went to a market in Esperaza.
They're in the shade, but you can see that they're definitely coordinated. 
We planted ourselves near a busy street so we could listen to the musicians and enjoy a cup of coffee.
Truthfully, Jules and I weren't dressed that differently either, even though she cut herself out of the pic. 

Esperaza is a bohemian town with many hand-made articles in the market. Nearly everything was brightly colored.

Some purses and jewelry
Table cloths packed neatly under an umbrella to guard from the ferocious sun.

More purses and hanging decorations

People were crowded around this "tattoo" shop, but I wanted a picture of the stamps.
After resting Sunday afternoon, we went to one of the squares in the village to watch the World Cup final, France versus Croatia.
When we lived at home, we always watched the World Cup, even before one of our sons became a soccer fanatic. So it was thrilling to be part of the crowd as France vied for the title!
Songs and horns and men in Speedos celebrating.
Exuberant and a little drunk
Pretty much everyone in the square was drinking heavily as they watched the game. And the one guy at the back who would yell, "Allez les Croats!" would unleash a wave of "Allez les bleus!" from the crowd. He probably was drunker than anyone, especially by the end of the game, which France won 4-2.
The bartender worked like a mad man trying to keep up with the drink requests, and toward the end of the game, he walked outside, sweat still flowing down his face, and the crowd cheered for him too.

This girl dressed for the game in her blue, white and red onesie with a rooster on her head. The rooster is the national symbol of France.

She looked happy, although had to be sweltering in the 90+ degree heat. 
Nearly every trip to town now is filled with cheek kisses and greetings, sometimes so much that we don't accomplish what we set out to do, but we'd much rather have the friends and the camaraderie than the limes, or whatever we went in search of.
So making friends in France, even if they're American or British, Australian or Irish, is priceless. We're still working on that next step of French friends, but I'm sure it will come.
If you love posts about France or French books, movies or life, visit Paris in July.

5 comments: said...

The twin outfits are too funny.
The dinosaur museum in Esperaza is pretty cool. And if you're into that sort of thing, the prehistoric man museum in Tautavel is awesome, too. Plus the scenery is gorgeous. And they have excellent wine.

Philippe said...

Hello Paulita! Soon, very soon you' ll make french friends into your area.Holiday spirit,market days or outdoor activities are great occasions to meet some on the go. And try to play a Pétanque game on a square.I am sure you will find some players in Quillan who will be more than happy to share a game with American counterparts.Good luck and still enjoy life in France with family and friends.

Kiwi said...

Very much enjoy these posts where we get a glimpse of the nearby towns. Thanks!

Jeanie said...

I'm so pleased to see you settling in. It looks just wonderful and I'm glad you are making new friends and as you said in an earlier post, having a social life!

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