Most of the restaurants that were closed when I arrived have opened. They have their blackboards out of the sidewalk and they all have similar offers, midday menus for 14 to 16 euros. Some have menus going much higher, for those yacht owners who can't live a day without lobster. I guess I am going to have to try them all. One week I will try the grilled sardines in each place and the week after, the calamares a la plancha with garlic sauce.
A lot of cafés offer tapas. These are an inexpensive way to have smaller portions of nearly everything on the menus, plus chorizo and manchego that are not. Here again you have to pick your time because kitchens are often shut down just when you feel like a snack. One place has a sort of local caviar made from anchovies, and you spread it on toasted baguette. It's pretty good.
An Internet radio I ordered came yesterday. The mailman pushed my buzzer just as I was locking my door to go to the market. At the building's entry he was just getting ready to place the package in my mailbox - he wasn't sure the buzzer functioned. Until the France Telecom guy came Thursday I didn't know either. The postman said he had a key for the box. That's cool. Means I don't have to stand in line at the post office for small items. And that's another place that takes a siesta every afternoon.
So I got my phone line hooked up, which means that the Internet works, the WiFi, the telephone, and soon, the huge TV. I sent away for a Homeplug set so I don't have to run an Ethernet cable from one side of the apartment to the decoder on the other side. I hope these things work, although I did use the same system in a hotel. I thought it was a bit slow. Maybe it was first generation. I looked for Homeplugs in Perpignan but the Orange boutique only sold phones. Since they seldom work - no plug-and-play - selling one takes an hour and my bus was leaving before then.
That's the difference the Internet has made. You live in a small town like this, with nearly no boutiques of any kind - everything is available online. My in-person trips to Perpignan to find a used car were a total washout - they don't have the cheapo wheels I'm seeking - but there's a place called Ripoff Cars in Nice that has my dream car. I'm going to think about it. I've never been to Nice.
Yeah, you need a car here. You can rely on the bus but there's no night service. There's the train, but I haven't seen it since I got off it some weeks ago. For anything big for the apartment, like a sofa, it's too heavy to carry, and the transport charge is not skinny. A salesman added more on the bill because I don't have an elevator. It's only two flights. I don't notice them, carrying up the fake beer. I think IKEA added on an extra 150 euros to deliver a 350-euro sofa from Montpellier.
Before coming I looked at Google Earth, and saw that there is a path to Colliure over the top, through vineyards I guess. Google Earth gave lots of detail but didn't show how high 'over the top' was. And it's a low hill. Other hills around here are higher and there's a lot of them. Although the Pyrenees are close mountain climbing has never been my thing. Cars were invented for mountains. A little gas gets you up in comfort, even with the radio on.
It's like the sailboats in the yacht harbor. They look nice and sleek, with their riggings jingling, but I'm sure they are cramped and smelly and they require a certain effort to put in motion. Haul that line! Everybody to starboard to keep us from tipping over! How many weeks will it take to get to Barcelona?