Monday, October 31, 2005

What I did during my Toussaint Holiday. (500 words, for Monday)

This was, I think, our third holiday in Hendaye, an old fashioned sort of seaside resort in the very, very southwest of France, so southwest that you can't get any more southwest. It's a great place for a break, and this time we took my Mum.

First of all there's the beach, long and flat and sandy and safe. We had such brilliant weather this time that we even managed a swim. Okay, that "we" didn't actually my thermosensitive body, but P. and the children had a frolick in the waves. Imagine swimming in the Atlantic ocean in the last week of October. Is that an Indian summer or climate deregulation?

Then there's Spain. For 1€50 you can get a little ferry across the bay to Hondarribia (or Fontarrabie depending on which language you're speaking) and get all tapas-ed out in the many bars and restaurants around the port, stroll up through the old town to the Parador, and then back down to hop on the ferry back to France. San Sebastian, which has to be one of the most fabulous cities in Europe, is only 20km away, Bilbao and its Guggenheim not all that much further.

The more sophisticated resorts of Saint-Jean-de -Luz and Biarritz lie a few miles to the north and inland there are loads of picturesque Basque villages daubed with ox-blood paintwork. Ainhoa is a favourite. All of this set across the backdrop of the Pyrenées. I'm starting to sound like a badly translated tourist-office brochure so I''l stop there.

All in all then, a busy week filled with gastronomic delights (I love chipirons, Basque squid) and non-delights: I'm thinking paëlla made from what looked and tasted like week-old leftovers from the kitchen, yeuch.



Ms Mac said...

Awwww, now I wanna get all Tapas-ed out somewhere.

Deborah said...

I shall go to Hendaye forthwith and take the ferry and go and drink Spanish wine and eat tapas, sounds fabulous. I wonder if people sneak into Spain this way and never come back.

You listened to others complaining about train service and I listened to people in the Trésor Public complaining about their 'impôt foncière'. I wanted to pay over the counter but you can't do that anymore. I was interested to know why they have suddenly put 'dépendance' on my 'feuille' amounting to a thousand odd euros added on the the rest.......

It nearly came to blows with the people in front of me