language be added to want of conformity to the customs, misunder-
standings and disputes are apt to ensue. The reader is therefore
recommended to endeavour to adapt his requirements to the habits
of the country, and to acquire if possible such a moderate proficiency
in the language as to render himself intelligible to the servants.
Articles of Value should never be kept in the drawers or cup-
boards at hôtels. The traveller's own trunk is probably safer ; but it
is better to entrust them to the landlord, from whom a receipt
should be required, or to send them to a banker. Doors should be
locked at night.
Travellers who are not fastidious as to their table-companions
will often find an excellent cuisine, combinedwith moderate charges,
at the hôtels frequented by commercial travellers (voyageurs de com¬
Many hôtels send Omnibuses to meet the trains, for the use of
which 1/<r-i. fr. is charged in the bill. Before taking their seats in
one of thèse, travellers who are not encumbered with luggage should
ascertain how far off the hôtel is, as the possession of an omnibus
by no means necessarily implies long distance from the station. He
should also find out whether the omnibus will start immediately
without waiting for another train.
Restaurants. Except in the largest towns, there are few pro¬
vincial restaurants in France worthy of recommendation to tourists.
This, however, is of little importance, as travellers may always join
the table d'hôte meals at hôtels, even though not staying in the
house. He may also dine à la carte, though not so advantageously,
or he may obtain a dinner à prix fixe (3-6 fr.) on giving tVVî nr-'s
notice. He should always note the priées on the carte beforehand
to avoid overcharges. The refreshment-rooms at railway-stations
should be avoided if possible (comp. p. xvii) ; there is often a restau¬
rant or a small hôtel adjoining the station where a better and cheaper
ineal may be obtained.
Cafés. The Café is as characteristic a feature of French pro¬
vincial as of Parisian Life and resembles its metropolitan prototype
in most respects. It is a favourite resort in the evening, when people
fréquent the café' to meet their friends, read the newspapers, or play
at cards or billiards. Ladies may visit the better-class cafés without
dread, at least during the day. The refreshments, consisting of coffee,
tea, béer, Cognac, liqueurs, cooling drinks of various kinds (sorbet,
orgeat, sirop de groseille or de framboise, etc.), and ices, are gen¬
erally good of their kind, and the priées are reasonable.
VII. Public Buildings and Collections.
The Churches, especially the more important, are open the whole
day; but, as divine service is usually performed in the morning and
evening, the traveller will find the middle of the day or the after-
noon the most favourable time for visiting them. The attendance of