Go Back  Fodor's Travel Talk Forums > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page >

A small French village of little interest

A small French village of little interest

Jun 21st, 2010, 08:50 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 21,608
A small French village of little interest

On this site, I often see people asking for picturesque villages to visit, preferably with a lively farmer's market, some wonderful little restaurants, a panoramic view and some colorful characters.

Well, the vast majority of French villages are not like that. The cafés closed long ago, you can't even visit the locked church, and you don't see a soul in the streets, but you see all of their satellite dishes in back of their houses. The architecture is very basic and there's nothing to take a picture of (or is there?). Shopping is done once a week at the nearest hypermarket, and the least fortunate have three chances a day to catch the bus that briefly stops in town.

And yet the people of these villages remain very attached to where they live, in spite of all of the shortcomings. And some of us are attached even when it was just the village of our grandparents and some summer holidays (in my case once every four years when the family had saved enough money for the trip).

I don't know if you'll find anything interesting in my village, but I invite you to take a look at it anyway: http://tinyurl.com/23fqt45
kerouac is offline  
Jun 21st, 2010, 09:35 AM
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 2,552
Correction, this village USED to be of little interest. Your excellent analysis has now brought to light the inherent interest in this once anonymous locale.
FrenchMystiqueTours is offline  
Jun 21st, 2010, 09:51 AM
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 17,549
In many ways the basic phenomenon is repeated in many other countries including the US. What some of us would truly consider shortcomings those remaining behind don't consider or if they do they have accepted, etc., you know the deal.

I am, unfortunately, unable to open any of the images here in my office but will take another, longer look, after I get home. As usual I expect to be impressed and the whole thing reminds me of those pictures of days-gone-by institutions such as the state hospitals, the orphanages, etc.,..they are grim but there is a certain amount of allure..something fascinating and "attractive" for some of us...

Thanks very much for sharing this.
Dukey is offline  
Jun 21st, 2010, 09:58 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 776
Thank you so much for this tour of 'your' village. We have spent so many trips wandering thru areas of France taking random pictures that could easily be interspersed (sp?) thru yours. Haven't been fortunate enough to have gone for a couple of years. I live vicariously thru your wonderful photo essays. I also really enjoyed Metz. I'm working on my DH for another trip but the driving is getting harder. Thank you and keep on shooting! CJ
CarolJean is offline  
Jun 21st, 2010, 10:10 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 7,525
Thanks. You always seem to bring out the interesting, non-mainstream ideas/places.

I grew up in a mining town. It's a different life.
Michel_Paris is offline  
Jun 21st, 2010, 10:31 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 13,713
Finally, kerouac, a picture of you.

Thank you, really, for the trip down your memory lane and through the poppy fields of your history.
Nikki is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2010, 02:50 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 21,608
Frankly, Nikki, it isn't the most recent one of me that I could find.
kerouac is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2010, 03:24 AM
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 17,549
I was right...I was impressed and again, thank you.
Dukey is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2010, 03:37 AM
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 228
Kerouac, thank you for the photo essay and comments. Your posts are always entertaining and informative no matter what the subject matter.
pauljagman is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2010, 03:39 AM
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 3,654
A really wonderful insight Kerouac, many thanks.
Didn't you have a photo of a very young boy (yourself) with a camera slung around his neck on 'Any Port in a Storm'? I liked it a lot.
tod is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2010, 04:02 AM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 686
Wonderful, Kerouac, thank you.
Keren is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2010, 04:08 AM
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,028
Thanks for the photos and the text.

It makes a nice change from all those posts about pickpockets and white shoes. In my experience, most of France has some similarities to your village.
chartley is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2010, 05:20 AM
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 2,632
I agree with Chartley. Kerouac your village is very similar to mine near Dijon, an old church, 2 restaurants, 1 grocery/bakery, a post office, a Sunday market, garage sale on the 1st of May every year, the town hall (where I got married) with the primary school attached to it (and a memorial on the main square), an "ecole maternelle" for the youngest ones (from 3 to 5), 2 cemetaries and 2 wash houses, football, tennis and skateboard playgrounds and fields all around (the aspargus are famous).
It is very lively and pleasant and so close to Dijon that more and more people have a house built there and maybe some day my village will touch Dijon. About 1200 inhabitants today, less than 1000 when I settled there 15 years ago and it is still growing. And it is the same for all the villages close to Dijon. And my boys go to school to Dijon by bus (there is also a tiny train station to take you to Dijon main station in 20min)
The perfect compromise when you like the countryside but don't want to be lost too far from your lovely capital.
Now you made me want to take pictures of my village!
cocofromdijon is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2010, 05:57 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 74,263
Hi K,

Great report.

>Except for giving the rest of the country the recipe for quiche, cabbage stew (potée lorraine) and mirabelle tart,........<

That's not enough?

You left out Bergamote de Nancy
ira is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2010, 06:40 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,556
An excellent job on another one of your fine pictoral essays Kerouac. Enjoyed the anecdotal stories.

Thank you also for reminding us that the majority of villages are not picture-postcard, flower bedecked, scene stoppers, but rather, honest and practical communities where peoples' lives and histories are made and remembered.

Mathieu is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2010, 07:44 AM
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 1,491
So interesting! Thanks for the visit.
julia1 is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2010, 08:08 AM
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 8,285
Thank you for the lovely interlude I just enjoyed.
gomiki is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2010, 08:19 AM
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 4,826
Wonderfully well done, Kerouac! Makes me envious; for most Americans the idea of having a "home village" is a dream. All of the places from my youth have been paved over by the spreading cancer of the "slurbs".

Also, the mobility of our society makes identifying roots difficult. I once counted, and found I changed houses 14 times before I entered High School, as my parents moved during the depression looking for work. ! I wouldn't know where to start looking for my roots --- and that is sad.

Coco, when can we expect the shots of your village?
nukesafe is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2010, 08:57 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 7,842
Sans request, here are some links to my home town.
No editorializing required.




WARNING: these photos are of Detroit
tomboy is offline  
Jun 22nd, 2010, 09:15 AM
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 6,191
Did I find it interesting? Yes, it was something different and enjoyed a look at your home town.
TPAYT is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 04:04 AM.