Saturday, 14 November 2009

Ajaccio, the Imperial City

Sometimes when you live in a small/seasonal town, you just need to escape to somewhere a bit more lively, so this afternoon we decided to do a spot of shopping in Ajaccio.

At this time of year, the difference between Propriano and Ajaccio is huge and it’s almost shocking to see so many people everywhere. We found a parking spot not far from the Place diamante, and although it was a little walk into town, it did give me the chance to inspect all the beautiful old Italianate style buildings.

As we passed by the building of the Conseil Général, we realised why we’d seen so many Policeman the workers were all outside protesting. We had no idea what the strike was for this time (they are common), but when we walked back the same way at about 5pm, most of them had gone home - Corsica is the only place I know where social protest only takes place during working hours and stops for lunch!

The colours were amazing and with the backdrop of sea and mountains, I could easily imagine myself living in one of the sun-bleached houses surrounded by palm trees (as long as it had allocated parking of course!).

We passed the statue of Napoleon and wandered along rue Fesch looking in all the little shops along the way. Being a city, Ajaccio is lively all year round so there was a good atmosphere even though it is the middle of November. We continued onto the Cours Napoleon to check out all the old fashioned boutique type shops selling handmade sweets and chocolates as well as more generic stores like Monoprix.

All this window shopping had whipped up a thirst so we headed off in search of coffee. It was incredibly warm in the sun, but the wind was a bit chilly so we chose a little café where we could sit inside and treat ourselves to Nutella crêpes before heading back to the car – yummy!

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