One of the most pressing issues us ex-pats face today, is the fact that despite being part of Europe, decent tea bags and baked beans are a rarity in France, especially in rural France.
Okay, so this is not 100% true. (Just for the record, you might like to note that I lie or rather, exaggerate quite a lot. Actually, more than a lot. All the time would be more truthful.) Anyway, you can buy decent tea bags and beans in France. The problem is that they are either available in French supermarkets in the 'exotic foodstuffs' sections and thus for sale at an astronomical price, or in the numerous 'English' shops that are spreading across France. And at en equally exotic price. Otherwise your only option is 'haricots rouge' or Lipton's Yellow Label tea, which as we all know, ought to be renamed Lipton's Brown Sludge That Pretends To Be Related To That Beverage We Call Tea. So not great.
Now I have no problem whatsoever with people opening such 'English' stores.
Lots of ex-pats do, and spend their days writing furious letters to the newspapers; bemoaning the spread of cheddar throughout France and signing off as Disgusted of Dordogne.
My problem is simply with the prices. It is not the fault of the shop keepers. They are paying a huge whack in social charges just for the pleasure of being open. Really they ought to be given charitable status and a sodding great EU grant. They are providing aid in the form of Marmite to us distressed gentlefolk. But instead, by the time they have bought their Heinz beans, transported them, paid all the necessary dues and put them on a shelf, the beans cost about the same as a kilo of truffles. I recently heard of someone who paid 2.90€ for a tin.
Us distressed ex-pats who are trying and failing, to eke out a living, cannot afford to feed our off-spring the vegetable equivalent of caviar on toast for tea. The result? An entire generation is now growing up without access to affordable baked beans. This is an outrage and I urge you to write to your MEP now!
I am counting on your support. Forget the currency collapse. The real issue here is beans. Or then again, perhaps Beanz meanz currency.....