Tuesday, 22 October 2013

The gentle giant

I don't know what it is about them, but there are some people who make me smile whenever I see them.  One such is a man whose name I don't know but whom I see almost every time I visit a particular restaurant in Châteaubriant.  This restaurant is also run as a bar, one of the few bars in the town that stay open during the evening, and the gentleman in question is a regular drinker there.  He is a large man, both in height and girth, and his hands are like spades.  As I say, I don't know his name - we have never been introduced - but he always greets us warmly, shaking my hand and giving the Old Bat a hug and a kiss.  He has several teeth missing, is never dressed exactly smartly and frequently needs a shave.  But his round face is friendly and he takes a great pleasure in helping out during busy times.  Last week, one of the two men who own and run the restaurant was unwell.  The other was busy in the kitchen, so the gentle giant stepped in and showed people to their tables.  As we left, there were more hugs, kisses and hand-shakes before he held the door open for us and bid us "bon retour".  Those were the only two words of his that I understood, the rest being in such a strong accent that they were completely unintelligible to both of us.  But words really aren't needed, just seeing him makes me smile.

This is the restaurant.  It doesn't look too good from the outside.

But inside is much better. The food is good as well!

Meat is cooked on this charcoal grill.  (The table cloths have been changed since this picture was taken.)

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