More on Brittany

by Jacqueline Feldman

Last weekend I was in Brittany on a Fulbright travel grant. I stayed with a wonderful family in Pléguien, a village not far from the medieval town, Dinan, where I was talking with a middle-school class. I was struck that flowers — mimosa, crocuses — fully bloom there in February.

Brest in Brittany is known for its chickens. The mayor of Pléguien trades his chickens’ eggs for my hosts’ tomatoes and leeks. They fed me bulots, a kind of snail. Shellfish are common in Brittany, near the sea. Bretons traditionally are fishers or farmers: cauliflower, white beans, buckwheat, apples. Today they worry about Europe-subsidized industrial farms, whose runoff causes an overabundance of green algae. This family knew someone who fed his chickens on red algae, and the yolks came out like tomatoes.

These photos I took near Paimpol and Plouha, on the beaches, and at Beauport Abbey. The hills sloping down to the beaches are red because they are covered in dead ferns. I included some photos of Dinan with the last entry.

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