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French People Don’t Queue Newsletter from France!


Bonjour and a very bon weekend to you all

This week I thought I would tell you about my neighbour Jean-Claude because tonight (if you’re reading this on Saturday) I shall be meeting him and his family at a local beer festival and I’m a bit nervous at the thought.

The beer festival will be held in a local salle des fetes, basically a community hall (they’re usually attached to the town hall). An Austrian Oompah Band will play and some of the villagers are cooking choucroute (sauerkraut) and lots of different beers will be on offer.

A French style Austrian beer festival… mmm, it promises to be fun doesn’t it. I think there will be mostly French beers as in my part of northern France we’re famous for our bière. In fact in the Nord, in the town of Douai, I’m told they brew the strongest beer in the world, a whopping 13% brew called Belzebuth.

I’m nervous, not because of the strong beer but because I know that we’ll be expected to queue up for our choucroute and I know that Jean-Claude doesn’t do queuing. Actually most French people are not great at waiting in a line for their turn but J-C, well, he takes it to a new level.

Once I was at another event where queuing for food was required, all was going well until the kitchen caught fire and we were all encouraged to sit and drink an aperitif hastily put together to keep us quiet whilst the pompiers dealt with the situation. An hour or so later we were called to recommence. I have never seen anything like the scenes that took place with people pushing and shoving to get to the front. About 50 rather inebriated French men rushing to get the food for themselves and their loved ones – it was utter mayhem. Jean-Claude emerged at the front after crawling through the melee of flailing Frenchies, by dead-legging his rivals and dragging my poor other half with him.

Whatever happens I’m sure it will be fun and I’ll let you know how it goes next week!

Wishing you all a very happy weekend,
Best wishes and bisous from France

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