Sunday, 21 December 2003

Christmas Shopping

Just got back from a shopping trip to France. We left Portsmouth Friday night, spent Saturday in Caen, then sailed back overnight Saturday to arrive home this morning.

We've been to Caen before, and it was lovely as ever. We basically spent the day wandering, and did some shopping. Alice seemed to like it, although it must have been quite tiring for her. We crowned everything with a trip to an enormous Carrefour, and got lots of nice things for christmas...

Trip home was... interesting. We were on the night crossing amidst gale force winds. The ship rolled everywhere, and somewhat difficult to sleep - for everyone except Alice.

Back home, but because or the rough crossing we all hit the sack for a few more hours as soon as we got home. Next, we got onto the Internet and did a grocery shop for the main christmas things, followed by a visit to a "real life" supermarket to get some things to tide us over the next couple of days.

One thing I found surprising about France. I've been over to France a lot, and in general I find their "culture" regarding shopping etc. to be just a couple of years behind the UK, and have also found the UK to be again, just a couple of years behind the US. But yesterday all of the shops had notices in the window about their Sunday opening hours. Many of the larger shops were open from noon to 7pm, typically. This really shows how silly the UK's Sunday trading laws are - even a catholic country such as France, far more overtly religious than the UK, has more liberal shopping laws.

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