French folks have quite a reputation for being rude. Last year, I noticed the Spanish so obliging that I felt humbled. If they didn’t speak another’s language, they did what they could to communicate and be so very helpful.
Now, reputation aside, what I have discovered here is an extremely friendly France. No one has uttered an unkind or rude comment (not that I would know!), and frankly, I’ve felt quite welcome here, especially by the older folks in the country. I even noticed a kind of excitement when they heard my accent. The expression, “A Yank!” or “Yaunkey!” wasn’t with disdain, as a pejorative, but rather a bit of “Welcome! I’m so glad you’re here.”
But how could this be so? Clearly, it wasn’t because of the money I’ve been dropping here. The pilgrim travels in an austere fashion, often sleeping in an alberge for 12€ a night. Could…
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