A Taste of Garlic

That was the week…

that was the week  That was the week...   because we all love reading blogs about life in FranceEvery Tuesday I intend to do a quick review of some of the posts from the last week that have made me smile, made me chuckle or, even…. just made me think.

Some of these you may have seen yourselves.

And some of them you may have missed.

I don’t think of these in any competitive sense at all.

This isn’t a top-ten listing.

They’re merely the posts that have stuck in my head.




that was the week  That was the week...   because we all love reading blogs about life in France1). It’s been a while since I’ve popped into visit Lucy at Box Elder but, as you can see from Elder still, the quality of the photos certainly hasn’t changed!

Lucy has the trick of…

Making little things seem big and…

Somehow cramming more colours into a photo than most people do.

I’ve said it before…

And I’ll say it again….

Looking at photos like these would make me want to jack in my job and move to Brittany!

If I hadn’t already done that, of course!

that was the week  That was the week...   because we all love reading blogs about life in France2). Still in Brittany (where all of the bestest people live – and me, as well!) we find Candy Froggie (of Candy Froggie’s Lair) running around in Run like hell.

I’m not really sure why but it does seem to be the sort of thing that you might expect her to do?

She certainly seems to enjoy it as she says… “When I run there, alone, with animals around, birds and rabbits… I do enjoy every second of it.”

that was the week  That was the week...   because we all love reading blogs about life in France3). At 2091 words, Julie at The Provence Post should really have won this week’s Longest Blog Post of the Week Award for One Really Interesting Thing After Another…

However, we are sort of saving that award up for its usual winner (whenever she decides to start blogging again) so I thought I’d mention Julie and her tremendous blog here.

Julie covers pretty much everything that is happening or is about to happen in Provence and you can spend hours just browsing through all the links that she shares.

Oh, wonderful photos as well!

that was the week  That was the week...   because we all love reading blogs about life in France4). If it’s Country Life that you’re after, you might want to take a quick look at MilkJam.

In MilkJam’s part of the country (which happens to be culturally advanced Normandy, compared to positively medieval Brittany) they have Bread vans!

Which have yet to be invented in the neck of the woods where I live!

But still, MilkJam prefers to use her Bread Machine.

Bread Machines!

Whatever will they think of next!

that was the week  That was the week...   because we all love reading blogs about life in France5). Have you ever taken one look at a photo and thought to yourself….

“That’s chez moi, that is” ?

Well, I felt like that when I saw the second photo on the posts Blue Shutters Green Shutters……… at “All Things French”

Obviously, it IS Provence rather than Brittany…

You can tell that, because it’s not raining!


that was the week  That was the week...   because we all love reading blogs about life in France

OK – now all that stuff is out of the way, let’s get on to the really important stuff…

Of course, it’s Awards Time!

And, I am proud to announce a new winner of the Blog of the Week Award!

This is awarded to the Blog post that has tickled my fancy the most during the past seven days.

that was the week  That was the week...   because we all love reading blogs about life in FranceThis week’s Blog of the Week has been won by Owen at Magic Lantern Show.

Owen’s posts are always interesting and his photos are always wonderful.

And when he wrote about a trip to Carentec (which as all sensible people know is in Brittany – where all the really sensible people live!) I couldn’t resist giving him the most sought after award on the internet!

that was the week  That was the week...   because we all love reading blogs about life in FranceGo on, read the post and tell that it doesn’t take you right there…

Can you smell the smell the sea…

And hear the call of the gulls?

And the thing is, every one of Owen’s post are like that!

Owen, if you’d like to place your award on your blog sidebar just email me and I’ll send you the code.


New blogs on the block….

Not really a blog but I noticed Christopher at www.chrisboddington.com commenting on Robin Ellis’s blog and thought I’d take a look.

I like paintings and these look pretty good (to my jaded eyes!)

They seem to capture something and, if that something just happens to be some of the spirit of the soul of France, all the better!

I’m not really sure how I came across In and Around Braye-Sous-Faye but I’m glad that I did.

It tells the story of Colin & Elizabeth’s new life in France and is best described by Colin… “We met three years ago and one of the first things I told Elizabeth is that I planned to take early retirement and move to France… Well look where that got me! We spent eighteen months looking for a house, viewing nearly fifty prospective properties in the process. La Croix Blanche ticked all the right boxes and we were over the moon when, in June 2010, our offer on the property was accepted. Four months and considerable amounts of bubble wrap later and the dream became reality. We love the life here and would recommend it to any other would be ex pats out there!”

Although it’s only been going for 6 months it already has passed 150 posts! Well done!

Also well worth a visit is La Petite Presse which is Gaynor’s blog.

Lots of very nice photos, I have to say!

I have absolutely no Idea how I discovered De la bonne bouffe but it may have had something to do with this post called… We’re only here for the BIÈRE [part1]

Which, of course, contains a picture of a very pretty red citroen 2CV (the blue ones do go faster but the red ones can be quite nice as well!)

Or, it could just be that the site seems dedicated to eating well?

Well worth a visit or two.

Also worth a visit is Chez Charnizay which is Niall & Antoinette’s blog.

They say, of it… “We are Niall from Edinburgh, Scotland and Antoinette a Dutch American. We are both teachers and writers of educational materials and met at York University where Niall was researching a PhD in Medieval History and Antoinette was reading for an MA in Medieval Studies. After 15 yrs in The Netherlands and 5 in the UK we have recently moved to a traditional ‘Longere’ just outside of the village of Charnizay in the south Touraine. This blog is about life & events in our area which we hope people will find interesting.”

And Poles Apart seems interesting.

Its owner, yeractual, says of it… “After too many years in law, now living in northern Sweden with an elderly cocker spaniel, cat, and wife, but about to escape the cold and move to SW France! A Scot by birth and inclination. Play acoustic blues guitar and ukulele. Member of George Formby Society – And proud of it!”

Must make note to investigate further….

Transition Kitchen also deserves a close investigation too!

It’s a blog about moving to Spain but ending up in Paris (those road signs can be confusing, can’t they?) and is summed up (as if you could really sum up a blog like this…) as follows… “This blog is about: whatever I damn well feel like posting that day. Photos of Sabine, Paris, food, travels, signs, oddities, people, flowers, whatever combined with hopefully witty commentary and thought-provoking notions. Fair warning, I am a left wing liberal and political things get me all riled up, so it will come to that too sometimes.”

Should be fun!!!


Breaking news….

that was the week  That was the week...   because we all love reading blogs about life in FranceOnce again, only two contenders for the Rant of the Week Award and, strangely enough, they’re the same two as last week!

Amber at Travelling Amber was ranting about something or other (at least, I think it was a rant? It might just be normal behaviour for her?) in Outsider.

I think the rant might have been something to do with cultural perceptions but, to be honest, about halfway through the 2534 words (she’s going after that Parisienne Bird’s record (for extremely long posts!), ain’t she?) I felt this inexplicable desire to cower behind the sofa and make “meek meek” noises!

So I spoke to some highly renowned psychologist friends of mine and they all muttered to themselves for a few minutes before one of them said out loud…

“Jah, I haf understanding of her problem”

I’m not really sure why Eric started talking in a German accent as soon as he qualified as a psychologist? He comes from Basingstoke, after all!

“The fraulein’s problem is…” he continued.

“She hast never been to Detroit!”

So, concerned parents everywhere, take note.

If you don’t want your daughters to grow up to be ranting raving grumps, send them to Detroit for a week or a month!

I don’t know if Magic27 missed out on the school trip to Detroit but, she does live in Montpellier so that might explain something?

And once again, I’m not really sure if her post about a Long Weekend was a rant or just Magic27 being … “a complete grinch” – her words, not mine?

I mean, most people would be happy to be invited out to the countryside for the weekend, wouldn’t they?

So I’m not sure why the blog’s author says… “I haven’t been anywhere in so long that it no doubt will do me good to get away for a bit. I just can’t be arsed, to be honest.”

Well, now it’s my turn to rant a bit!

I really am quite disgusted by the general lack of rants coming from all of your blogs!

that was the week  That was the week...   because we all love reading blogs about life in FranceYes, you too! Don’t try hiding behind your desk – I can see you!

I know that summer is on its way and we should all be happy but…

Can’t any of you find anything at all to rant about?

Are the streets of Paris suddenly devoid of dog plop?

Have the French stopped butting in in front of you whilst you are patiently queuing?

Have the French suddenly discovered how to spell Customer Service?

Well, until I see a marked improvement in your efforts, I SHALL NOT BE awarding the Rant of the Week Award to anyone!

And the image above?

Desperate measures!

In the, possibly forlorn, hope that it might inspire some of you to pull your fingers out and make an effort to win next week’s Rant of the Week Award!


that was the week  That was the week...   because we all love reading blogs about life in FranceThe Yum Yum, Fill My Tum Award is still missing!

So we’re stuck with the I’m A Greedy Piggy Award instead!

And, once again we have too much choice for who to award it to..

Which, coincidentally, is what Virginia at Paris though my lens said in her post.. Trop de Choix.

Which either means that Virginia can read my mind (and what a frightening thought that would be – for Virginia, I mean!) or…

She gets as confused as I do when presented with a lovely tray of food?

And perhaps Sydney at The Tasty Side of Life can also read my mind (poor girl…) because in…

Ahi Tuna Wrapped in Mangetout with Edible Flowers she has come up with a recipe that I would die for!

She says… “A great chic appetizer for a dinner party full of color – Makes 12 Servings”

To which I can only reply…

“Or, you could hide it in the kitchen, let your guests starve and eat it all yourself?”

To which Meredith at Ditdit in France would surely reply…

“I smell something fishy.”

Meredith, it’s probably all that Ahi Tuna that I’ve been pigging out on!

But, there can be only one winner this week and so i can proudly announce that the I’m A Greedy Piggy Award goes to…

Virginia at Paris though my lens!

Congratulations Virginia, I just luuurve escargot au chocolat!


The Toilet Talk Awards!

that was the week  That was the week...   because we all love reading blogs about life in FranceIt really wouldn’t be A Taste of Garlic without some Toilet Talk, would it?

And this week’s is Toilet Talk proudly provided by Meredith at Ditdit in France with her cleverly titled Toilet Talk (you can tell which prize she was going for with that one…)

I’m not going to spoil her post by telling you all the details but….

If you’re in Paris, make sure you have a 1 euro coin to hand and be prepared to say hello to the man who… Cleans your seat!

Neenuh, on the other hand (or, should that be other buttock?) at Francey Pants wrote a charming post called PP Out.

This post is largely, it has to be said, all about hyphenation and…

Feeling like being a PP is part of her identity!

All I can say is that I so sad that my parents…

Chose not to call me Peter Paul (or something similar)…

So that I could also say…

“P-P has to go peepee!”

So, this week’s Toilet Talk of the Week Award goes to Meredith at Ditdit in France because of all her diligent research!


Now for the rest of the awards….

In a surprise turn up for the books, Leesa at News from France actually wins an award this week after months and months of winning Awards for Not Winning an Award This Week!

Leesa wins this week’s Ahhh, isn’t that Sweet Award

Partly for her lovely Happy Birthday, Anne! post and

Partly for making Anne in Oxfordshire pancakes and apricot jam as a birthday breakfast treat!

Congratulations on the award, Leesa but…. this doesn’t mean I’m going soft!

The very first They’re a Funny Lot, That Lot Down in Montpellier Award goes, as is only right, to Sarah at St. Bloggie de Riviere for her charmingly eccentric tale about Mice, Rats and people nicking Celebration chocolates (or not nicking them, as it turns out) which she entitled… Of Mice and Me.

I knew right from the start that it was going to be an award winning post!

I mean, any post that starts with the words… “On Monday I did a silly thing. Just before going to bed, I opened the front door to see if our cat, Ulysses, wanted to come in” ….deserves to win something, doesn’t it?

That’s an opening right up there with… “Call me Ishmael.” or “It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.”

Sarah, congratulations on the award… and the pregnant (it’s bound to be, isn’t it?) mousie!

The Kick Up The Bum Award of the Week surely has to go to Susie Hesleton who freely admits that she is not so good at updating her blog!

Which is a shame as when, when she does update her blog it is very interesting!

She’s only got 3 Google Friend Connect followers (and one of those is me!) so, if some of you could sign up to follow her and also mention how much you love posts like… My hobby; my chickens perhaps that might persuade Susie to pull her finger out and post more often?

Amidst loads of competition, The Rude Experience of the Week Award has been won by Susie at Desperate Anglo Housewives : Bordeaux for Yes we can!

And all I’ll say on that subject (you’ll really need to read the post to understand, anyway) is…

If you ever come across a Kiwi in Bordeaux who is busy wrinkling her innocent forehead and saying “Excusez moi?”..feigning miscomprehension and requiring repetition…

It’ll be Susie (or maybe another desperate Anglo Housewife – they’re probably all the same? They’re a funny lot, down that way, anyway!) sorting out her cultural differences!

The furiously fought over Hangover of the Week Award is hereby awarded to Lyon Lottie (what were her parents thinking of when they named her that?) at Life in Lyon for Hangover Hell.

I still can’t believe that Lottie only has one follower (and that follower is me!)

Although I suppose that that does explain what’s been driving her to drink?

I mean, imagine if 100% of your followers were me?

You’d be saying… “Pass me the bottle and a straw!” as well!

The Over-stuffed Bratwurst of the Week Award (and I am so totally surprised that there was only one entry this week!) goes to Miss K at Postcards from Paris for her Totally Crap Outfit of the Week #20.

I am full of admiration for Miss K in her eternal search for people wearing black lingerie under too tight pink dresses…

And I still don’t understand why I didn’t get that job, myself!

Now, there’s no way that I’m going to even attempt to explain why Mark at A Corner of France wins this week’s Multiple Orgasm Gender Assignment Award!

You’ll just have to read Gender issues for yourselves!

All I’ll say is that I did learn something new!

The That’s My Sort of Bar Award goes to Karen at Get Real France for her Chez Alco.

Well done Karen; it’s your first award, isn’t it?

Very well spotted – more like this, please!

There were three contestants who were shortlisted for the Official (Unofficial) Paris Photographer of the Week Award.

These were (in no particular order)…

a). Jeff at Paris for his Au Quai….

b). Barbara at bbonthebrink for her delectable decay and….

c). Genie at Paris and Beyond for her Rue de Montorgueuil — Déjeuner.

After an awful lot of discussion (we were up all night debating this award!) it was decided to award it to Genie at Paris and Beyond because…

She mentioned those irresistible words..

“Moules Frites!”

So, budding photographers…

You know what to do in your next post!


And just for the people who didn’t win an award this week….

Here are the famous Awards for not Winning an Award!

I almost awarded Stephanie at Blog in France an Award for Letting it All Hang Out and Wobble About for reminding me that Naked Bike Ride Day is coming up (I do love those events that you don’t have to dress up for!) in Renude-able Energy

But I thought it would be best to wait until we’ve got the proof that she has participated!

After all, she did do that Naked Gardening Day stunt in May?

So, in anticipation of photographic evidence, Stephanie, here’s a sort of warm up Award for not Winning an Award This Week.

Also getting an Award for Not Winning an Award This Week is Karin at An Alien Parisienne who has been missing in action for over a month now and some people have been voicing concerns that she, just like me recently, has been abducted by Aliens from Outer Space!

If she has….

All I can say is…

“Karin, I hope you’ve got a head for heights and I also hope you’ve stocked up on Vaseline or KY Jelly!”

I was fully expecting to award Mr Tomato King a nice big award for his First Tomatoes of 2011 until….

Mrs A Taste of Garlic advised me that we only have on paltry tomato and…

If I dared to give Mr Tomato King an award….

I would (to use her actual words)… “Spend the next six months sleeping in the pig sty with the pigs, where you belong…”

So, Mate…

Sorry but it’s an Award for not Winning an Award This Week for you!

And also Andromeda at The Adventures of an American Blonde in France who was going to get an Award for Passing Her Driving Test but then I discovered…

In Driving Test – Most Stressful 20 Minutes Ever that she’d only passed the written bit.

So, whilst congratulations are in order (and I really think you should all scurry away and leave some congratualtory (is that a word, probably not!) comments on her blog….

Andromeda, you;ll have to wait until you’ve passed the driving, parking and hill starts bits before you get a proper award!

But, if you do need advice on what car to buy once you have passed…

Let me tell you about Citroen 2CVs…

Get a blue one – they look good and, as we all know….

They go faster!

And, just in the nick of time, Laura published Parlons de Sex at The Everyday Life of a Young American Girl in France and caused us (the international judging committee) at A Taste of Garlic an enormous problem!

Did we award her the Award for the Strangest Dinner Table Subject of the Week or the Award for the Most Twisted Male Member?

We just couldn’t decide and….

With time running out…

We decided to award Laura an Award for not Winning an Award This Week!

Laura, better luck next week!

And, talk about leaving things right until the last minute….

Left Bank Manc would surely have been a contended for both the Rant of the Week Award and…

The Worst Au Pair in France Award if only she had posted her post, Merde a few hours earlier.

So, Left Bank Manc, it’s only an Award for Not Winning An Award This Week for you!

Make a note of our deadlines and try to be on time next week, please!

All the best

that was the week  That was the week...   because we all love reading blogs about life in France

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