Monday May 31st 2010, Memorial Day back in the USA, will be remembered by me as the day I had the best Coca-Cola of my life. The day had started well enough with me grabbing my wallet, my apartment key, my local phone and my transportation pass and headed off to the IMLS. However as it turns out, sometimes from when I went to the IMLS to when I left it, I had lost my transport pass. I ran back to the apartment to search my room to see if I had been mistakenly left it there. I had no such luck. I searched everywhere and I had lost it. I went back to the IMLS and searched the room where I have class and it was the same story. So after this I was rather upset and a little hungry. So I went to the Monoprix, grabbed some fruit, some sugary candy and a coke. The guy behind me in line was drunk and was set off when two girls behind him spoke English and started laughing. He turned and drunkenly mocked their laughing by mimicking it. He would turn and laugh at them about three times a minute as I was standing right in front of him. I was grateful when I could pay and get out of there.
I was walking back to the apartment, about a four minute walk from the Monoprix at the Comedie, when I opened the coke and began drinking it. At that moment, my life was a Coke commercial. Instantly I became happier and the world around me became a brighter and happier place. I actually had to restrain myself from skipping on the way back. By the time I had finished the coke I was content and knew that everything would be okay.
That was my third great moment surrounding food since arriving to France. The first came early as we went to a restaurant whose name was French for “The Tomato”. Three others and I got this dish that we were told was fish with tomato sauce. What it turned out to be was four pieces of fresh fish with lemons to squeeze on them, with eggplant covered in tomato sauce and fries. As others liked the eggplant, I was able to have two of the fish. I, a raised meat eater who live off of meat, would give up meat if I could get fish like that every day.
My second great food experience came again during lunch. We went to a crepe restaurant where we got it to go as it was cheaper. I was not particularly hungry that day so I just got a crepe that had melted chocolate spread over it. As I ate it the hot chocolate spread to my fingers and I determined that the crepe was in fact, finger lickin good.
Now the time for my favorite food I have eaten in Montpellier. I had it for the first time on June 1st during what I thought was our wait for to go to the Chateau de Flaugergues. I was told we had thirty to forty minutes so I went to a sandwich shop and got the Americain sandwich. I am convinced that it is the most appropriately named sandwich ever. It is a baguette split down the middle, with a flat ground beef patty and a huge amount of fries squeezed in. As I sat on step eating it, I was very happy.
France has been a great experience and I have loved the food. From fresh fish, mussels, the best omelet I have ever had and great calamari, it has been a culinary dream come true for me. Add to that the amount of bread that is eaten in this country and this has been close to a food paradise for me.