Monday, 5 September 2016

A very fond farewell!

Yesterday evening we had a wonderful surprise..

Our English friends had organised a farewell party, hosted by Gaynor and Tim. Everyone present had a hand in the preparations and contributed to a fantastic gift for us, of the gardening variety!

Jean, a true "Queen of Cakes", had baked a delicious vanilla and almond cake, which tasted every bit as good as it looked..

What a send off by a wonderful set of friends, who have enriched our life in France in so many ways...

Even the night sky made its contribution to the party...

All we can say is a huge 
"Thank you" 
to everyone there for their friendship, generosity and good wishes for the future....

We'll miss you all; but you needn't think you'll get rid of us that easily. To (mis)quote from some second rate movie, or other:
"We'll be back!"

Sunday, 28 August 2016

Refreshing recycling...

Our old frying pan is now a bird bath... It has proved vital after a week of temperatures up to 39.7C

Today's antics had us in stitches. Let's just say it was chaos down at the pool!

The photos speak for themselves: and some are more vocal than others. They were all taken in under half an hour.

Looks as if there is some discussion going on here... "What's it like in there?" "Dunno, will you try it first.."
 

"Us bluetits need to stick together. Do we really want to share the pool?"

Who'll take the plunge first, this robin or the wren?

Ok then; the robin or the great-tit?

Oh all right: the robin or the blue-tit?

The robin!

"I'd rather you didn't take my photo right now, please"

Then the rabble arrived...

"I told you to be more discreet; you shouldn't go advertising your pool parties. Now you just look silly"

But look over there!"

"Thanks, guys, I don't mind if I do!"

"Come on in. The water's lovely"

"What's ruffled your feathers?"

Then along came a blackbird...head first..

splashing a by-stander...

No comment!
oh go on then.... 
"Out of the frying pan..."

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Fete du Setout 2016

This was a day to remember for all the right reasons...

On Friday afternoon we went to help erect a marquee (20mx8m approx) for this years Fete du Setout. We wrote about last years, here

It is basically a gathering of neighbours, who live in the centre of the commune, to share a meal or two and enjoy a day of talk, food, drink and lots of laughter.

The following photos give a flavour of the day, which began at noon and was still going strong when we took our leave, exhausted, at 11:45pm.

After much discussion on Friday afternoon, the tables were arranged and we added some decoration..

By this stage the fridge freezer was installed (just out of shot) and the electrics connected, so cool beers all round..

Then the day of the Fete arrived, and with an improvised bin and the food unloaded from Philippe's van we were ready to start..

Josianne had made this sunflower which was soon demolished. It's a really simple idea with savoury pastry but so effective..

Drinks were passed round

the barbecue was lit

and the marquee was filling up

Then came a surprise; we were presented with a gift by all those present and a card which expressed such warm wishes for our future.

Before we ate we had a group photo..

then, after a serious discussion over the grill, we were ready to start

A typical pose for the chef and wine waiter!

time to chat and wait for the next course....

And after all the food, a game which involved throwing metal discs onto a pallet...   Colin would have benefited from some practice beforehand because it all hinged on technique!

By early evening we were back at the table

Whilst the onion soup was cooking there was time for some dancing...

Note the bottle of sloe gin on the table. It was very well received and knocked back as if it were lemonade!

So by 10:30pm we were tucking into bowls of onion soup, sausages and pork chops

All thanks to the man who organised the day,  Philippe... 

One mystery remains...

In the words of Josianne:

QUI A VOULU ELIMINER MADELEINE,?????   


Saturday, 13 August 2016

Return of the Hoopoe family

We thought we weren't going to see them this year but the other day not one but four Hoopoe arrived in the garden...

This one sunned itself for a good ten minutes before deciding it was hungry..


There must be something in here somewhere...

Yes!!

Then there were two..

Then three...

Then four but sadly I couldn't get all four in one photo. This one signalled time to leave...

But they were back again yesterday, thank goodness!