What a wonderful event! Christmas in France is really celebrated on the 24th with a big feast and the arrival of ‘Papa Noel’ at Midnight. Went for a nice walk in the morning through the village and then the surrounding vineyards.
Walking in the morning really is the best way to get a feel for a place – all the locals are up and about doing their business and you are free to wander where you please.
We had a nice light lunch in anticipation for the Christmas dinner
complemented by some lovely red wines.
While the kids played in the afternoon
I wandered around the property taking photos – see photography page for more
We started aperitifs at about 8:30 – champagne, mouth watering white anchovies and other nibblies.
The champagne kept generously flowing throughout the dinner and to my delight it was all delicious, fresh seafood – just like what my family would be enjoying back home! There were oysters, sea snails (yes I tried them and they taste completely different to normal snails – I’m pretty much an escargot expert now haha), prawns, SALAD, smoked salmon and a local white fish followed OFCOURSE by cheeses and then a traditional French Christmas cake – which is pretty much cream on a very thin layer of cake. Compared to many of the meals we’ve enjoyed so far it was quite light but when you factor in the my large servings as I LOVE seafood I was at bursting point when the meal finished at about 11:30. At about 11:55 the announcement “PAPA NOEL IS COMING” was made and the children were ushered into one of the bedrooms to sing Christmas carols while ‘Papa Noel’ lay all the presents under the Christmas tree and the bell to announce his departure was rung. The kids came in barely able to contain their excitement
As if I havn’t already been stuffed like a prime piggy during my time in France I was given 3 boxes of chocolate! I’m beginning to expect the French stay thin by making everyone else fat! With arms full of presents the children, closely followed by the rest of us all went off to bed to rest for part 2 of the big event.