France and joie de vivre

The French lifestyle is all about the art of living life to the fullest. Living life with pleasure and enjoyment is always a priority, whether through social gatherings, excellent food, or beautiful surroundings.
The French, we love to hate them, but you've got to hand it to them, they do know how to live.  It's what I aspire to, "living life to the fullest" but it feels as though I've been existing rather than living these past few months of lockdown.

I'm got cravings for a freshly baked croissant, so fresh and buttery that it melts in your mouth.  It's one of my favourite things about visiting friends in Bordeaux, they would head to the local bakery first thing in the morning to pick up croissants, pan au chocolate or pan au rasin for breakfast.  We'd sit, with a pot of coffee and have a long lazy breakfast, enjoying the food, company and view.  The perfect start to the day.

Their house is surrounded by picturesque vineyards, although we're talking about France here, where isn't?!  Last time I visited we were treated to aperitifs at La cabane dans les vines.  A traditionally built wooden hut (so much more than a hut) that offers wine tasting from local organic producers.  Heaven! We sat on the deck, glass of wine in one hand and cheese in the other and watched the sun set over the vines and river in the distance below.  Once again those bloody French nail it - social gathering, excellent drink and beautiful surroundings.  Simplicity enhancing beauty.

So the challenge for this week is to incorporate the French living life with pleasure and enjoyment into my lock down.  Now that I'm furloughed I've got the freedom to focus on the things that bring me pleasure: music, walking in the park and good food.  I may be the world's worst cook but I still appreciate good food.  I might even use this as an opportunity to get a little more creative with my salads, add a bit more spice to my sauces and, while travel isn't an option, bring the world to me with a smorgasbord of international cuisines.  

Incidentally, if you're looking for an escape to the French countryside near le cabane dans les vines, I highly recommend Le Sechoir, au Jardin des Tisanes

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