Our second day in France was just about as uneventful as our first.
After a breakfast of paracetemol we hit the road south. It was a cloudless day, and the heat was shimmering. Herself was a red as a beetroot and complaining non stop about the heat. I stuck her on the roof of the car for a while, and that cooled her down.
We decided to stop of for coffee in a rather attractive little town. I don’t remember its name but it was probably St. Germaine-sur-Somethingorother. Every town in France seems to be called St. Germaine-sur-Somethingorother.
Most of the shops were shut, as it was the height of a Saturday afternoon, but we managed to find a wee coffee shop. Actually it was more of a snack bar than a coffee shop but it had two things going for it – it had nice tables set out in front, and it was open.
They gave us lovely coffees. That is one thing I’ll say for the French – they know about coffee.
The owner was a bit brusque so I casually dropped the fact that I was Irish into the conversation. I regretted that. Apparently he hates the British but thinks the sun shines out of an Irishman’s arse. After much handshaking, hugs and kisses [on the cheek, I hasten to add], he told us how much he loved the Irish. All of this was in French, but I actually understood him very well, and he actually understood me.
He told us how he insists on buying only Irish beef, because the English stuff is shite, and full of foot and mouth, and blue tongue and BSE. For some reason, Herself got the wrong end of the stick here. She thought he was saying that he had married an Irish wife. I didn’t bother correcting her as it would just have led to confusion.
He raved on about Irish beef and Herself made comments about how nice Irish wives are. The two of them struck up great conversation about the merits of Irish beef/wives. Until, that is, he decided to bring Herself into the kitchen. He had one of those great cylinders of beef on a skewer for cutting kebabs off. “My Irish beef,” he announced proudly. Herself screamed and passed out cold.
The poor Frenchman was a bit taken aback. I resorted to International Sign Language and the good old standby – point a finder at the temple and slowly rotate it. That satisfied him, so we revived Herself, had more hugs and handshakes and kisses and went on our way.
I wish Herself would learn French.