Pétanque is akin to boules, or horseshoes. There is a target ball and the object is to get as close to it as possible. Hollow metal balls are tossed at the target while standing inside a starting circle, both feet on the ground – the name pétanque is said to be derived from the Occitan word meaning “feet anchored”. The game is best played on hard dirt which allows the balls to roll. We caught this game outside the old walls of Carcassonne in the southern Languedoc-Roussillon region of France, but it is played worldwide and there is even an International Federation of Pétanque.