Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Easter in Brittany

After five long grey weeks in la région parisienne, by the time Easter weekend rolled around, I was more than ready for a getaway. Even I was surprised, however, by the sense of relief that washed over me as our TGV pulled out of the Gare Montparnasse last Saturday morning: clearly the crowds on the metro and the dull skies had got to me more than I thought, and a weekend in the Breton countryside was just what the doctor ordered. 

My optimistic visions of dancing daffodils and gambolling lambs were somewhat clouded as we passed through Laval and large snowflakes drifted past the windows. (I hadn't looked at the weather forecast.) It wasn't snowing in the Morbihan, but when we went for a walk in the afternoon in an attempt to enjoy the countryside, a chilly mist crept through our inadequate clothes and deep into our bones, and we didn't last long before heading home for brioche and coffee.

Luckily, Easter Sunday was sunnier, albeit relatively: Understanding Frenchman's nephews and nieces were bundled up in ski gear for their Easter egg hunt in the garden. Incidentally, in France, the chocolate is not left by a rabbit, but by passing bells (and the tooth fairy is actually a mouse) and fish are a popular design for Easter chocolate. We managed two walks round the local park, one just the two of us and the other with children, grandparents and a scooter, which was just as well, as lunch was a 6-course meal (apero, cold starter, hot starter, main course, cheese and pudding).

On Monday, UFM, his dad and I went for an afternoon stroll in the forest near Paimpont. We parked at the Forges de Paimpont, a site historique that dates back to the 17th century, which was built take advantage of the local network of rivers and lakes to carry out the metal working. This video has pictures of the forges, as well as providing a great introduction to the delights of Breton folk music:

We took advantage of the lakes too, by going for a nice walk around them.There were still no leaves on the trees, but we did see some pretty spring flowers, and I was happy to spot  a couple of lambs, even if  admittedly they were more huddling than gambolling!


  1. I miss the egg hunt! Do you find it funny that the "cloches" bring chocolate instead of the Easter Bunny?

  2. Not only did I find it funny, I also couldn't quite believe that the children would believe it and nearly gave the game away a couple of times. That would never have happened with, say, Santa Claus, because it's part of my own culture to make children think that story is true too!