7am at the Marché des Lices
It's early Saturday morning. The last of Friday night's student revelers are stumbling home and the Marché des Lices is coming to life. 400 vendors arrive for the weekly farmer's market, along with a few early risers eager to have the best choices. At the Bocel vegetable stand, an elderly man is greeted by his last name. He's been coming for more than 50 years. Always at 7 am sharp. After him, on a good day, 15,000 Rennais will show up to partake in Brittany's bounty.
Mountains of fruits and vegetables are displayed with care, one vendor is even using white gloves to handle the clementines. Another vendor is delicately snipping bad leaves from a chicory salad... an ethereal still life in the early morning light.
It's a wonderful world, a ballet dedicated to the best and freshest produce. Today, the first live scallops of the season made their appearance, still in their shells and ready to snap at unsuspecting fingers. The fish are glistening, fresh from the sea just a few hours ago. They are alongside the first chestnuts and squashes, apples and figs... But it's not really fall weather yet, it's been unseasonably warm these past days, and this indian summer is still giving us heirloom tomatoes and sweet corn.
I am far from being a morning person, but who knows, I might make an exception for my saturday mornings...