I’m just back from a week touring Brittany in Elaine Beige. It was, as you can image, hell on earth.
Nothing to do except enjoy near-empty beaches, bask in the French sunshine, eat crêpes, drink la bière de Bretagne and forget British politics. It’s a hard life, etc, etc.
On a number of occasions, I chanced upon mesdames et messieurs living the French dream. From the surfer dude arriving at the beachside car park in his Dacia Logan MCV to the well-tanned woman strolling down to the beach from her des res by the coast, I lost count of the number of times I pointed at someone who appeared to be living their dream.
But one guy stood out from the rest. From what I can see, this chap is spending his retirement touring the coastal roads of southern Brittany in his immaculate Citroën Méhari.
I’ve often thought that Snufkin had the right idea – easygoing, carefree, heading south for the winter, etc – but I reckon ‘Méhari Man’ just edges the guy in the shabby coat.
And not just because he drives one of Citroën’s finest vehicles. Consider the evidence.
He lives in a region of France where every third car is #FrenchTat and the biggest queues are for the baguettes at the local patisserie.
Furthermore, to paraphrase Don Henley’s French cousin, there’s hardly anyone on the road or hardly anyone on the beach. It’s like Cornwall, but without double yellow lines, expensive car parks, overweight gammon and oversized crossovers blocking the lanes.
The other benefit is the array of French tin to spot at your leisure. Some of the paintwork might be peeling like the skin of a sunbathing Brit in Newquay, and hubcaps might be in short supply, but one can never tire of spotting old Citroëns, Peugeots and Renaults.
Which means that ‘Méhari Man’ must be living the French dream. Not convinced? I’ll leave you with some photos.