Monday, 2 February 2009

swap shop

In France if a commercial tenant is in situ for three years, it is almost impossible for a landlord to remove the tenant until nine years has passed. In St Jean de Luz this results in shops playing a version of kiss-chase. After a shop has been in place for two and a half years they tend to get their marching orders and move location. Given that many of the commercial buildings in town are owned by the same person or by colleagues of the landlord the list of shops in Rue Gambetta rarely changes even though the addresses at which each shop can be found changes every so often.

As one walks down Rue Gambetta one can be forgiven feeling bemused: a shoe shop that was in place last week is now replaced by a chocolate shop that used to be around the corner where the dress shop moved to from the site that the shoe shop now occupies. Confused? It adds a whole level of complexity t0 the shopping experience. Unsurprisingly, while shops offer the finest wares of designer luxury very few display elaborate interiors, plumping instead for standard static white.

On a more grown up note I had a chat with some five year olds (welcome respite after pretending to be smart last week) about children's literature. We chanced upon one of my favourites, Noddy. It transpires that the French have a far more mature and salient name for the rosy-cheeked cheery chap, Monsieur Oui-Oui. I almost did, trying not to laugh.

Basque of the day:- silly :: inozo