Sunday arrived. We had 6 guests coming at 3 pm. I had no idea how to start or what to cook or prepare as there was zero inventory in the pantry, fridge and freezer!
Luckily, the night before, we consulted the villa owner about supermarkets in the vicinity. He was very kind and provided us with an address. Brilliant! That was a good start.
Meanwhile my girlfriend, M, was sending me updates about her contingent and going through the names of who would be coming. I have met M’s husband as well their 2 daughters and have known the girls since they were tiny tots. They have now grown to be knockout beauties!
The 2 girls brought along their schoolmates and suddenly M had to be an instant Mum to 4 lovely ladies.
M is not just a friend. She was a former colleague. We both worked at Pfizer BE in the late 90’s. We now work in different companies and we still get to meet socially when we could with 2 other former colleagues for an all ladies’ day out. Check out this post Ladies’ Day Out.
Putting my Thinking Cap on …
Thanks to the villa owner who passed us the address of the Supermarket the night before. It was definitely easier visualising what to put on the table for our guests when we were at the supermarket.
French baguettes were a life saver! And they’re in abundance where we were. Phew!
To go with the baguette, there’s soup. I also made sardine dip or side dish (with chopped chillies, shallots, spring onions, fresh coriander, lime juice, salt and pepper). This went perfectly with the baguette as well.
I made a 3rd plate of the refreshing yum woon sen (my own version of the Thai vermicelli salad).
Since it’s Summer hols, we didn’t go by any dining rules. Why bother? It’s not all about food, by the way; it’s meeting and greeting and having a sense of comradeship that’re more important. Chips, nuts and what-have-you nested happily on the serving table.
And then there were 10 of us …
Our guests arrived on the dot. 3 pm sharp! Bravo. Well done, M!
It was great meeting up with M and her family again ~ and mind you ~ in France, more than 1,000 km away from our homes. So glad that our paths crossed this Summer hols. Everyone had a fantastic time in the pool or poolside and basking in the sun and just talked, oblivious to the passage of time.
I couldn’t remember what time M and her family left. No one kept track of the time. When they finally left, suddenly our house became so quiet…
Sunday was a fulfilled day spent with friends. Monday was a day of rest, which helped a great lot in charging our mortal batteries for the next days.
We headed for the Tuesday markets at Vaison-la-Romaine, which was 22 km away. I love going to the markets in the Provence. There is at least one or more than one village market every day in the week. Vaison-la-Romaine is just one of them. Unfortunately, it’s not my favourite village market. I’ve seen better ones at Bonieux, a hilltop village in the Luberon region of Provence.
When going to one of the village markets, we had to make sure that we left early as all markets will call it a day by 1pm.
We bought a huge loaf of pain fermie (sourdough loaf), which lasted for 2 and half days. This was considered as fast moving and would only happen during the Summer hols. Breads back home in Belgium would often go untouched, until they get mouldy on the 5th day. Lol!
The Best Cheap Lunch Deal Ever at Beaumes de Venise!
For a complete menu of Eur 18 per person, comprising of a starter, main course and dessert, I would recommend this address: La Part des Anges at Beaumes de Venise.
We were pleasantly surprised by the excellent presentation of every single plate served for an incredibly cheap lunch menu.
Mind you, I had one of the best starters in a long time, Tiramisu Provençal. My main course was duck meat in raspberry sauce served with French fries and salad. My dessert was the refreshingly light and tangy lime panacotta.
The tagliatelle carbonara was my younger son’s choice of main course, by the way.
Thumbs Up for a superb lunch👍🏼
We stayed on at Beaumes de Venise a bit longer because suddenly my other half was attracted to something …
Was it something or someone? Let’s find out, so stay tuned to Part 3…