Glorious sunshine on this holiday Monday; perfect for that most French of pastimes: a trip out to people-watch and browse at a local brocante. A short car ride east through perfectly-manicured parcels of cognac vines to the pretty Charentais village of Fouqueure is the order of the day.
Winding lanes, flanked by old stone houses are adorned with jaunty rows of parasols and makeshift tables groaning with local produce, bric-a-brac, hidden gems and ramshackle items of furniture all begging for a new owner or a makeover. Treasures unearthed are carried aloft or balanced precariously on bicycles and pushchairs. One little boy's toothy grin as he clutches a huge red fire engine, bought with his pocket money, brings a smile to our faces, too.
The appetising smell of french fries and the sizzle of barbecued sausages draws crowds of hungry bargain hunters to a pop-up eaterie and bar, shaded by walnut trees. Beneath the canopy of branches, a stage is set for a band to entertain the throngs later in the day. For now, the band members are conversing over a sandwich-frîtes - it is 13h00 after all! A relaxed lunch with an ice-cold beer or a cuppa is indeed a delight on such a sweltering day, but the highlight for many visitors today lies beyond the stalls, the food and the music.
Announcing its arrival with a cacophony of claxons, horns and humming engines, a steady stream of classic cars makes its way uphill into a field on the edge of proceedings to join an impressive display of agricultural vehicles from a bygone age. 2CVs, Morgans, a Bugatti, an Aston Martin and just about everything in between, offering photo opportunities galore and an added attraction for those who prefer cars to shopping! Fun to be had for all the family.
Brocantes are held across the country throughout the spring and summer months. Find out what's on nearby when you're visiting us at the Brocabrac website. You may just bag a bargain! For more information about classic car rallies, exhibitions and events, including the famous annual Circuit des Remparts road race weekend at Angoulême in September, see Retrocalage's Poitou-Charentes page here.
Happy holidays from Rue Vincent!