|View from the top: Angoulême, Thursday afternoon.|
Or something. I don’t really speak French. I can order a coffee (“Café Long” is regular) and pronounce Gerard Depardieu correctly, but that’s about it.
Last time I was at Angoulême was in ´98 or ´99. My first comic book was on it’s way but not out yet and I was very new to the whole scene. A bunch of Danish comics guys have been coming here for years, but apparently it’s the Swedes, Norwegians and Fins who have been heading up the Nordic presence at the festival, with tables and everything.
My travelling buddy Peter Snejbjerg and I arrived yesterday afternoon and checked in at Appart City, a relatively new apartment style hotel just outside the old city walls, a 10 minute walk from all the action. Constructed in and around a 12th century abbey, the place is a maze of corridors and the breakfast room is obviously too small for the crowd it attracts this time of year. But it’s a good deal. There’s a bathroom and kitchenette in every room and it’s close. Getting a hotel room around Angoulême in January can be really tough, so I can highly reccomend this place.
Walking up the hill to the centre, you instantly know you’re entering comics territory. It’s a wonderfully widespread festival, with expos and comics all over the city. Angoulême is very small and the narrow, winding streets are filled with comics fans and creators, going from one bar to the next, the conversation flowing freely. For a laid back pub crawl-style comics festival in an exotic location, Angoulême is certainly the place to be.
|Even the buses are decorated to suit the festival. Angoulême goes all in.|
|After registering at the Hotel de Ville, we just had to get one of those free cognac drinks at the press lounge.|
|The Indie scene here is great! So much to see, exhibitions and book sales in bars and shops all over the city.|
I want to get up the hill and submerge myself in comics now, but I’ll be sure to let you all now what you’re missing.
Tip of the day: When you order a “medium” cooked steak in France, it’s bloody red. Just saying.