On our school trip, we stayed in a fab centre in Normandy with a chateau, doing adventure activities and learning French. Par exemple, je suis une moissoneuse-batteuse. See?
An awesome, proper authentic-looking Frenchman showed us how they brew their own cider au chateau. After a quick look at the antique, enormously heavy apple press, Gerrard (the Frenchman who also goes by Monsieur-le-moustache due to his magnificent set of handlebars) popped a bottle and let the boys taste a couple of fingers of the brew.
He said "Il y a seulement 50%, oui?"
"Oui, c'etait une blague"
"...Parce-que il y a 80% alcool"*
Actually, it was maybe 2-3% proof and very delicious. Most of the boys didn't like it so I got them to tip their cider into my glass. Win. The whole experience was a bit surreal, but certainly quintessentially (or stereotypically?) French. Merci Gerrard.
And so I made a page about it. Naturellement. Alors, non? etc.
The photo, incidently, is from French disguise night. But the moustache reminded me so much of Gerrard's that I had to stick the photo in. So it's wine in the caraffe, not cider. They were terribly keen on shoving the stuff at us. As I said, surreal on a school trip. Don't worry, we were very sensible. But it was amazing to sit in the glorious sunshine of the evening at a picnic bench, watching the students haring around, dealing with the odd bump or bruise ("You're alright now aren't you? Or maybe you'd better stop playing and lie down...?" "No miss, I'm fine now!") and having a good gossip. With the chateau behind us, rolling green scenery in front and the odd glass of wine, it really didn't seem like work. Good times!
*French errors in journalling obviously intentional. I am clearly completely qualified to make up spellings of geniune French dialogue. I have a GCSE and everything.