I think what you describe is probably common all over the world -- a combination of inertia, timidity and dismissal of the unknown. As you know, even cities are often treated by their inhabitants as more of a clump of villages, with some people never venturing out of their own little patch.
Boss Tweed -- American politician, head of the Democratic machine influential in the politics of NY city and state in the later 1800s. Through fraud and political corruption, he managed to steal millions of dollars from NYC taxpayers.
I've had a bunch of stuff going on lately, so haven't given anyport the attention it deserves. However I did note this thread when it was first started and have been looking forward to an opportunity to read all the posts in sequence, which I just did. It's funny to realize that there are so many foods that others remember trying first as adults that I've eaten since before I can remember.
Really, some things, such as oysters, that have been mentioned brought back vivid memories. Even as I write this, in my mind I'm in the backyard at my grandparents' house. My grandfather had a waist-high tree stump next to a faucet in the side yard between the house and the store. He'd stand there and shuck oysters until he'd filled a large bowl and then we'd all sit at the long wooden table in the patio and eat them till they were gone. My mother was always eager for the bowl to get emptied, as she wanted to drink all the liquid left in it. Much as I love oysters, that always mildly disgusted me. And really, I prefer to open an oyster and suck it out of the shell to all other ways of eating them.
Another thing that several people mentioned was snails. I think I can remember my mother making them when I was a child or teen, but my most vivid memory of eating them was standing in the tide in Malaga when I was around nine. My mother showed us how to pick up the little sea snails and dig them out with a pin to pop in our mouths. It was that summer vacation that I also remember eating smelt for the first time.
Funnily enough, my first parsnips really stick in my mind. They were something that always intrigued me from reading about them, I guess in English books. (I was a huge Enid Blyton fan as a kid.) But the first ones I ever saw were in the very early 70s in the Riverbend Winn-Dixie in New Orleans. Once I had them, I was hooked for life, but they haven't come my way very often.
One thing I never had until I was a junior in high school was pizza. This was @1965 in Savannah, Georgia. I guess it wasn't as ubiquitous all over the US as it is now.
More recently -- last week, as a matter of fact -- I ate mallow for the first time. All kinds of wild greens are eaten here, so maybe I'd had it in a mixed bunch before, but this was the first time I got a bunch of just mallow and cooked it. It is quite good!
Yeah, I never got the cultish fascination with that movie.
I came to this thread to announce that I did start watching Broadchurch season three & got completely hooked from the first few minutes. I'm now caught up with everyone else & believe the most recent episode airs today.
Still don't really like looking at David Tennant, though.
In my ignorant way, whenever people said "the south of France" I always envisioned something either impossibly glamorous and in a bygone age -- the Fitzgeralds and the Murphys enjoying an endless lunch on the lawn of a beautiful villa; or something vulgar and repellent -- too many bronzed bodies steaming in their coats of suntan lotion on a crowded beach. Even after doing some reading before the trip, I thought it might be all villages and monuments overrun with tourists and cutesy shops.
You obviously had more of a handle on the delightful reality and appeal of the area, Fumobici!
Ha ha ~ Streap Club keeps getting banned for spamming the forum with coupons for Two'fer Tuesday and Ladies Night, so you'll have to save your store of crisp dollar bills for something else.
Re: tacos al pastor ~ your fun fact for the day: tacos al pastor get their name from the Lebanese who settled in Mexico and introduced the vertical spit way of cooking meat. Since "everyone knows" that anyone from that part of the world is a shepherd, the tacos made on the Lebanese spit are "shepherd-style tacos / tacos al pastor".
Under and around the arches on the arcaded main square, Place Paul Saissac ~
Notre Dame de la Jonquière, built in the 13--14th centuries ~
All good things must end, so we wend our way out of town ~
After Lisle-sur-Tarn we visited Albi, where Bjd once again enriched the experience with her comments on history. She also drew my attention to salient features in the magnificently overwhelming cathedral there, which I covered in this thread. Endless thanks to Bjd for her company and her huge generosity with friendship, time, energy, and driving.
I leave you with our first and last sight of Toulouse, a place that warrants much more time and attention ~
There is a thread here somewhere about bitter tastes. Tonic water would definitely be in that category, which is why I will raise a glass of it along with LaGatta.
After reading Casimira's post, I started wondering about gin's bad reputation, which I had always thought was due to alcohol abuse in 18th century England -- mother's ruin and all that. Accordingly, I googled "gin more damaging than other alcoholic beverages?" and got many hits.
This one traces the history of gin in England and the societal causes of alcoholism in the 18th and 19th there.
But this cheerful article proposes that gin in moderation might actually be good for ones health. (Rather speciously in the case of gin&tonic for warding off malaria, as I believe it's the tonic that has the quinine, not the gin.)
That is annoying. It's one of those shows I keep meaning to watch. Have you seen Humans? If you can get it, you'd probably like it.
"This sci-fi drama series written by Sam Vincent and Jonathan Brackley is based on the Swedish award-winning drama "Real Humans." The story is set in a parallel universe where technology is highly advanced and lifelike humanoids called Synths are the must-have machines for any household. Joe Hawkins decides to buy a Synth to help out at home, but his wife, Laura, feels uncomfortable around the humanoid. Elsewhere a widower tries to fix his malfunctioning Synth, Odi, who holds some precious memories of his late wife. The all-star cast includes William Hurt, Katherine Parkinson, Colin Morgan, Rebecca Front and Gemma Chan."
I just went through the whole thread again, as there are too many wonders to take in adequately at one viewing. So happy to see that you gave us a look at the "brown building", as I was puzzled earlier in the thread as to why you didn't zero in on it. Wow ~ that was leaving one of the best things for last! This report could also be used as an appetite stimulant, with all the great pictures of food and menus. And people certainly are out and about taking advantage of everything Singapore has to offer the pedestrian, something that makes the city seem very appealing. Highest praise for a report that really gives a sense of place.
After a long and enjoyable day seeing the sights of old Toulouse and partaking of Bjd's hospitality, we retired looking forward to the more rural charms of the following day.
Bjd picked us up in the car and we set off. First stop, the medieval beauty of Rabastens-sur-Tarn.
Taken in the parking lot. Like most non-French people, I am transfixed by the odd custom of pollarding ~
This church is Notre Dame du Bourg. Founded in the 12th century, it was rebuilt in 1230 to serve as the parish church at the request of the Dominican inquisitors. (The Inquisition was attempting to crush Catharism.) Notre Dame du Bourg is built in the same gothique méridional style as Notre Dame du Tour in Toulouse, shown earlier in this thread. Possibly the most impressive feature consists of the magnificent 13th century murals which were discovered and restored in the mid-19th century.