Christmas in NantesNantes, Fall 2011
‘Tis the Sunday before our version of finals week here in Nantes. I have 6 exams this week, including some papers to turn in, but by the end of the week i’ll be all done and enjoying the last few days here with friends. Everyone seems ready to be done with finals and to go home, but at the same time the general concensus is, this semester went by too fast and “we can’t believe it is practically over”.
Yesterday, for what seems like the 50th time, I packed my camera, cash, and gloves, and walked around the center to explore the Christmas markets with a friend. It seems that Nantes can’t get enough of the hot wine, Bretzels, chocolate samples, and candy shops. Every weekend for the past month, the center of the city has been crowded with people doing their Christmas shopping or simply enjoying the holiday spirit over endless amounts of sugarcoated nourriture. It is impossible to walk by without buying something or taking a sample of everything offered to you. As I was eating some glazed peanuts I walked by a Tartiflette stand (Tartiflette consists of potatoes, cheese, bacon) where a gigantic pot of this cheesy goodness was being warmed up. My friend and I paced back and forth, pretending to consider buying some but really only expecting to be offered a sample, and the Tartiflette man asked me what I was eating. I offered him a peanut, and he proceeded to offer me a sample of this french specialty…and that, my friends, is how you negotiate in France!
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