dimanche 14 juillet 2013

The French Cafe Chair

The French café chair...  simple, good looking and universally recognised..  Here's a set of Tolix chairs for sale in Riberac market..

dimanche 16 juin 2013

Herbs in the Garden

The herb border's looking pretty good...

Bright green chives with their lilac buds which then pop into big blowsy flowers...

Feathery fennel.. This one's still tiny and fresh but it'll soon be towering over everything else in the border...  Later in the summer there'll be the yellow flower heads and in the autumn, lots of aromatic fennel seeds to collect..

Here's a golden sage which gives a real splash of colour..

And just in front of the golden sage, some white chives with their delicate frilly flower spikes..


Here's some thyme.. This one is only just planted so still compact and green. 

Tucked in amongst the herbs are some self seeded pinks which have the most delicious scent..

You can't have a herb garden without parsley...  This Spring has been cooler than usual so the seeds have taken longer to grow but the parsley at least, is now romping away..

Finally, some tarragon..   Not much to look at, but the most lovely aniseed flavour.

samedi 25 mai 2013

Of small shops and supermarkets..

One of the delights of living in France is that town centres still have independent shops - the boulangerie, the boucherie, the charcuterie and so on...  In part this is probably because of France's fine food culture.  But the survival of so many independent retailers is also the result of laws which have curtailed the power of supermarkets to undercut small retailers and specialist shops.  Planning laws introduced in the 1990's also placed restrictions on where and how supermarkets could develop.

But - every town has its out of town supermarkets and its share of shut up shops..

At Aubeterre in the Charente

And at Villebois Lavallete in the Charente..

And this is Riberac in the Dordogne..

But some great independent shops survive.  Here's one in Perigeuex..