I find it hard to put my finger on the city or its people. Not quite Italian or Slavic, there is rude mixture of genetic throwback which makes the Venetians fiery and hot-blooded and saturnine and big faced. These resourceful, mercantile amphibians rule their intriguing and mysterious city with contempt and indifference to outsiders.
Sud de France is as much a foodie travelog as it is a cookbook, there are lots of notes about the region which is wonderfully written and interesting to read. The familiarity that Conran has with this area of France shines through, the insight is thorough and while reading you feel that you have seen and tasted the area.
TEFAF is 260 exhibitors, seemingly miles of corridors and countless objects, pictures and jewels to admire. But behind all of this sparkle lies a delightful human drama. It is the people that make this show happen, it is the daily flow of passing crowds and hurried meals and chance encounters that create a unique ambience.
We live in a country where 30% of children leave school obese or overweight and where we spend £6billion on treating diet related diseases every year. We have a generational skills gap - 60% of 18 to 25 year olds leave home without being able to cook five basic dishes. And it is making us unhealthy and unhappy.