It’s always lovely to get Christmas cards but here in France those cards really do bring friends and family we left behind seem closer. Our French friends are always amused to see the ribbons hanging down with all our cards fastened to them – sending cards for any occasion is quite a recent phenomenon here. The French do however go to town with New Year greetings – and you have until the end of January to wish people a happy 2009. Some of our friends have sent New Year’s cards but most wait until they see you – and everyone from your best friend to the postman is keen to wish you have a happy time – but more importantly good health in the year to come.
Every January our Mayor and his council invite the whole village to the Salle des Fêtes where he gives a bit of a run down on events of the past year and then passes on the official new year greeting. Everyone then enjoys a glass of cider with a piece of King’s cake – Galete des Rois – here it’s the brioche form – although I love the almond based galette that is the cake of choice in Paris.. There are two little traditions that we have been introduced too – if you find one of the lucky charms the it’s your turn to buy the next Galette – the one I like best is if you find the charm you get to kiss all the members of the opposite sex at the gathering. Sadly no charm came my way this year!!!
And,of course, you get to wear the golden king’s crown.
This is the Brioche cake eaten here in the South West. The almond galette – from posh Paris!
So to all our friends at home (that’s France!!!)and abroad (that’s everywhere else!!!) we wish you a very Happy New Year! Meilleurs Vouex – bonne année et bon santé!!