Thursday, July 22, 2010

July 14th - Bastille Day

  Rather quieter on the novelty front this week.  The weather was hot and sunny for the French family who spent a good deal of their time fishing in the millpond. The three boys are polite and well-behaved and seem to have enjoyed themselves. Their mother made a delicious rhubarb tart and cooked some of the crayfish (the American ones) in a sauce. We were invited to partake of both of these dishes.  

 Crayfish in sauce
Malek has been helping Jim with several chores around the domain including the vegetable watering which is becoming rather a time-consuming job because of the dry weather.

 Jim's vegetable garden
I have finished the patchwork quilt for the main bedroom and will have to get a new project going soon. I have also more or less finished the painting of the bedrooms. I will start on the kitchen ceiling next.  
Rufus has a new hobby. Instead of catching lizards he has turned his attention to flies. He is fairly successful at this and when he has caught one he eats it. The numbers don’t seem to have decreased though and have become a nuisance. We have been driven indoors more than once by them. You don’t know whether they are going to bite, sting or just crap on your dinner so the more that Rufus can catch the better. Hornets are something else!
A pleasanter topic which I should have mentioned last week is the perfume of the chestnut flowers (Sweet Chestnut (Castanea sativa). Apart from the walnut trees the domaine of the Moulin is blessed with a quantity of chestnut trees. These flowered late June, early July. The scent of the  flowers hung over the valley and was particularly strong in the evening. It was a delight to take a late stroll out into the fields and breathe in the heady perfume. Another marketing opportunity there for you, Peter, if only we could bottle it.  
Friday 15th July
 The French have gone and we left it too late to fire up the bread oven. They want to come again so may be will get another chance.
Sunday 18th July
 Last night we attended the July 14th supper in the village. The affair was in the newly roofed marquee and we were entertained by a magician/comedian/musician. We had a good time although everything was in French as you would expect and we didn’t really know what was going on. We had salad, quiche, grilled sausage and meat and ice cream.
The Dalmon family including Anaîs and Flora who were there minus their parents made us welcome and invited us to sit with them. We sat opposite a lady who was secretly feeding her dog under the table – we shared a joke about this. A good evening altogether.
Matthew and family arrive tomorrow so we shall scrub the place up and move into the gîte.
Flora and fauna
Corn Cockle
Marbled White Butterfly
Sunset from the village

1 comment:

  1. There's a company, American I think, but perhaps Frances can advise, that bottles all manner of unusual scents - woodland after rain, bruised garden tomatoes, the smell of a horse after a gallop, earth - that sort of thing - so they may have done your chestnuts already. As to the flies - maybe a species of insect eater is called for. A pet swallow or better still a house martin. Other birds I'm told eat insects too as do reptiles - lizards, frogs etc. Perhaps your lizards are too small or their tongues are not long enough. Maybe you could put out step ladders so that they could climb up to where insects are flying. There are also those neon electrocutor things that butchers have in their shops in countries like ours where there aren't many flies.

    You didn't mention fireworks. Did you have fireworks on 14 July?