It would hardly be the most mind-boggling revelation to say that the French love their food. It’s intertwined in the culture, part of the national psyche. The French get food at a pure, primal level. In the UK we’ve come along in leaps and bounds in our understanding and appreciation of good food in the past twenty years. I’d argue that English cheese has the better of la fromage francaise, and there’s no such thing as a decent French pork pie. But food and eating are an intrinsic part of French daily life, and our weekend in Montpellier gave us quite a few different examples of that fact.
Here in the 21st Century, distance is as much about culture and language as it is about milage. Consider. It takes an hour and a half to get from Reading to Gatwick Airport. It takes the same time to get from Gatwick to Montpellier, and all of a sudden I find it a hell of a lot more difficult to order a coffee.