Countryside near Tarare, France
I wasn’t prepared for how green France was going to be. When one thinks of “green” and “Europe” in the same sentence, it’s usually followed by “Ireland” or “England.” France doesn’t often come to mind. When it comes to French nature, it’s white we think of…all those pretty alpine mountains. And of course, French cities, are, well, cities. So sitting at a café in Paris or at a bouchon (local restaurant) in Lyon, green isn’t something you’ll see much of. And yet, especially in the north and central départements, you step away from the cobblestones, restaurants, cafés and pretty buildings into the true countryside, and suddenly, the world goes green. Interestingly enough, Lyon (about 30 km from Tarare), has an annual average rainfall of 32.8 inches per month (according to this site), while England has an annual average rainfall of 33.7 inches per month (so say wikipedia). So–not such different numbers. France is prettily green…and proud of it!