Sunday, 16 June 2013

Any excuse for a party

If there is one thing we have learnt in our many years of visiting France is that the French certainly know how to have a good time.

Imagine the scenario:

A small town (let's say Martizay, a few miles from Les Deux Platanes) decide they want to throw a party. The local Comite des fetes gets together and asks 'what can we have as a theme for the party?' Someone says 'Sausages!!' Pourquoi pas? It's as good a reason as any.

So, they galvanise the locals, they hire in the tents, benches, tables and other requirements for cooking. Then they find a friendly traiteur to provide a variety of sausages and some chips. They get the local cafĂ© to supply beer (on tap of course), wine and soft drinks. They hire a couple of bands (in this case a percussion band and the local 11 piece dance band (they don't do things by halves and somebody from the band probably lives in the town which helps) Hey presto you have the Fete de saucisses! 

We had to go to support their efforts. They had several types of sausage: normal, merguez (spicy north African), boudin and andouillette. The price for sausage and a generous portion of very nice chips: 3,50 euros. The bottle of wine was 8 euros, so in all we spent the princely sum of 20 euros all night. The entertainment was free! We had a great time dancing in the open air (I am getting really good at the Madison!)

There wasn't a food hygiene certificate in sight, the H & S man doesn't seem to exist - were there any complaints that things were not 'done' properly? Not at all in fact the hygiene standards were extremely high! Everyone had a good time - and no-one appeared the worse for drink either. We left at 11.30 and the party was still going strong. It is this type of community effort we enjoy so much. Long may it continue!

Sunday, 9 June 2013

Its a good year for the roses...

(apologies to Elvis Costello)

The wet spring has  brought unexpected rewards in some beautiful roses in the gardens of Les Deux Platanes.

We have a selection of climbers and bush roses, and all are currently at their best. I am sure you will enjoy the photos:

The annual festival of roses has just finished at Chedigny near Loches, not too far from the gite. The whole village has cultivated a variety of roses which are shown to their best at the end of May. I think we could give them a run for their money! I am really pleased with the roses this year.
We have just finished planting a number of shrubs around the field. Hopefully they will take well and begin to flower next year.