What’s up with all the hippies?

A grey and gloomy start of the day today in Die, France. And so I brewed myself a good load of coffee in our Bialetti coffee maker, and took a long while to finish it. I bought some excellent freshly roasted beans at a small coffee roaster we passed by near Konstanz, on the way to France. The lady at the coffee shop ground the beans to the appropriate grain size, and boy does it make a difference. I often end up buying prepacked coffee while on the road, which is usually indicated as suitable for Bialetti – as well as for drip and espresso, which is dubious in and of itself. The resulting brews are often either acidic or bitter, indicating a too coarse or too fine grain. Not this time. This coffee tastes just perfect! Nutty, and full of flavor. It also packs a good punch.

Anyway. Enough about coffee. After I downed the whole jug, we decided to explore Die. It was market day today, and that’s usually a good time to soak ups some town vibe. Die is an old and rather cute little town surrounded by medium-high mountains, making for a good surrounding view. The town is typical Southern French, with old buildings showing remnants of past advertising paint work on the crumbling walls, and blue and green paint blistering off the wooden window shutters. I love it. I can’t help always looking for cheap property at local immobilier. Someday…

This town in particular is quite funny. I am not sure why, but Die seems to attract a lot of people of a certain ‘style’. I almost felt a sense of belonging here, walking between all the scruffy-bearded, long-haired, and crappily tattooed men and women (the latter minus the beard, usually). The town folk reminded me of Wageningen, the town that still feels like home to me. Maybe Die could be a good alternative. They may not do any ecology anywhere near, so finding a job will be tough. I’m sure I could start a coffee bar here, though, although I had a good espresso and an excellent chocolate whatever thingy on the market square at Sylvain’s. Tough competition. Maybe I should just stick with ecology for now. (Academia is of course a great alternative for avoiding competition…)

Tonight the weather is lousy, and we are spending our evening inside the camper van. It looks like it’s gonna be like this for a little while, so we might leave the hippies behind and head for better weather.

Published by Robin Heinen

Father of two | Husband | Entomologist and Ecologist | Postdoctoral Researcher @ TUM | Traveler | Coffee Addict

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