TRAVEL with pat and lew

buying food

Posted by Lew Weinstein on February 23, 2007

This is not as straightforward as you might think. The packages are, of course, all in French. Sometimes it’s clear what’s inside, but not always.

Asking for something in the store can be an adventure, but it’s fun. Pat describes apple sauce with hand motions that do the trick.

Mainly, we buy our food at the Shopi, a small supermarket in town. The cheese section is superb, and they have packaged fish and meats, canned vegetables, cereal, soda, and pretty much whatever we need. We shop daily, taking our shopping bags, if we remember, buying only as much as we can carry home.

There are also several smaller food shops in the village, including one called Casino, which is like a small 7-Eleven.

Pat doesn’t ride her bike to the village for our daily baguette (that image was how our dream began), but often, at the end of her morning run, she lines up with the men at the local boulangerie. In France, buying the baguettes is very much a male task. So this little blond lady in running shorts (something else that’s unusual in Collioure) creates quite a stir each morning she appears.

At the midpoint of our five minute walk from the village center to our apartment is the Domaine Galy wine shop on Avenue Aristide Maillol, featuring outstanding local wines at 3-4 euros ($4.00 to $5.00) per bottle.

We’re terribly spoiled by this.

We’ve read that a glass or two of wine every day, especially red wine, is good for you, so we test this theory regularly. We also discover the local rosé wine. Our part of France, the Languedoc Roussillon region, produces outstanding rosé, and we’ve learned to love it.

The only problem is that we can’t bring any wine back to Key West, where we have sticker shock in the fall buying wine at normal U.S. prices.

Once or twice during the summer when we have a car, we go to the larger supermarkets in Port Vendres or Argeles-sur-mer, and stock up on large purchases which are too heavy to carry. Things like soda and paper goods.

For a while, we buy bottled water, but eventually we conclude that the tap water, cooled in an empty wine bottle, is just as good, maybe better.

LEW

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