Within the confines of every village, no matter the size, lives the beloved boulangerie. It is a reliable truth. We consistently find our way there, along with the French old timers, each morning. This morning I traverse the steep incline for the daily ritual with Chris.
I reach for the door knob and step inside the cozy room. The unmistakable bready fragrance meets my nostrils and I think my eyes must be rolling back into my head. The woman behind the counter is almost always a pretty middle-aged woman, with glasses, her hair is usually pulled up (her husband is in the back with the flour, butter, and ovens) “Bon jour, madame” the woman behind the counter sings to me; “bon jour” I say in my conspicuous English accent; it doesn’t matter to anyone though. I am in boulangerie heaven as my eyes dart in each direction deciding on what to buy. There are traditional loaves with dark crusts, lighter baguettes, fruit-filled tarts, jambone quiches, flaky croissants – a delicious mixture of both savory and sweet treats. After a little over a week, I am recognizing a little spoken French and more written French; I can understand what is inside each baked treasure. We decide on several delicacies along with a traditional long loaf of bread with pointy ends – it is warm, but to be consumed later in the day.
We exit and the French monsouir behind us has casually purchased his lone loaf of bread, puts it in his bicycle basket and rides down the street.
Tomorrow we will find another boulangerie….
(P. S. We will be joining the gym in Budapest)