I went to Lille with the French Society from university this weekend and it was quite fabulous. I was expecting it to be a rather traditional, old city but I was pleasantly surprised by the lively, vibrant life that was bustling about there.
We started the weekend off watching the rugby with a beer in a cosy pub. It was great to have us 'rosbifs' sat next to frenchies when our teams were competing against each other. We also grabbed a bite (I had a burger of course) to line our stomachs for the night ahead. After a drink at a different pub we commenced the night at La Plage, a really cool tiki bar that had such good dancehall-type music and even had sand covering the floors. The barmen were very lively (one of them a little too affectionate) and of course us Anglais were hanging around like barflys, living up to our reputation. The cocktails were too good to miss though. We then went on to club Smile which to me was typically European in the sense that a song would play for about 30 seconds then the remix would hit and it would change to an equally electro dance pop anthem. But it was a great time given that there were poles and platforms that we all took full advantage of.
The day after we spent time exploring the city, visiting the main square and Vieux Lille which I loved as there were so many winding roads complete with the beautiful architecture that you can only find in France. It was there that I also found the love of my life in a brasserie but I'm still not over him so I won't go on about that for too long...
That evening we had a giant group meal (there were about sixty of us) at La Chicorée, a lovely restaurant situated in the main square. I, of course, had another burger (which even had a hash brown in!) and was hardly surprised by the look on the waiter's face when I stated that I wanted it très bien cuit. You know how they like it to be practically alive on the plate. To wind down afterwards a few of us then went to watch The Kingsman in a cinema right by where we were staying. I thought it would have been dubbed in French but I read along with the subtitles instead to learn some new words. The film is bloody brilliant by the way and I would highly recommend giving it a watch. Oh and the French accent is way sexier when someone is whispering it in the cinema. I was having a good listen to the conversation of the people behind me.
To finish off our trip on the Monday we went out in style by paying a visit to a lovely crêperie called La Regalade. Leaving Lille and knowing we had to face a ten hour coach journey back to Manchester was a little disheartening but I knew a service station McDonalds was on the horizon. We were also treated to a gorgeous sunset on the ferry so that helped a lot.
If anyone else has been to Lille before I would love to know what you got up to!