Posts Tagged ‘pootling’

Snapshots – literal or otherwise – of French Village Life

Sunday, September 27th, 2009

Goodness me – Real Life has happened with a vengeance! I don’t seem to have had much time to myself, but I think if I consider carefully I probably have, but I’ve “wasted” much of it in front of the TV. I don’t seem to be someone who can motivate themselves to do stuff in the evening: I sit in front of the TellingVision (as I always seem to think of it. Did I get that from Catweazle? Or possibly, Edward Eager’s “Half Magic”? Does anyone know?)  and do very little. Though to be fair to myself, I have knitted 7 scarves in the past months  for Christmas presents. I’m going to start an 8th, to use up all the bits of fluffy wool, but this one’s going to be for me, because I think it will be a bit of a mish-mash. I have loads of scarves, but the wool has felt so nice while I’ve been knitting it I’ve had “scarf envy” and want to have one for my very own self.

Anyway. Back to snapshots.

Sunday morning: A hazy morning, with an Autumn chill in the air. The sun is weak, and there are wisps of mist among the trees on the hills surrounding the village. There must be a wild boar nearby, as I can hear the hunters’ horns and the bells on the dogs. I can’t help hoping it escapes. I know that here the hunters generally eat what they kill – unlike the slaughtering of foxes in the UK – but I still don’t like the thought of it. Which is both ridiculous and hypocritical as I’m not a vegetarian and happily tucked into Sanglier (wild boar) casserole, made from a hunted creature. You don’t need to tell me how stupid that sounds. I know. (shakes head wryly)

Sunday morning (again): I’m not going to church today. Having spent quite some time this week driving back and forth to work, I don’t feel inclined to drive another 30 minutes each way to church. Not today. So I’m cooking lunch and dinner. There’s a delicious smell of roasting tomato and garlic as I prepare Gascony Tomato soup for lunch, courtesy of Joanne Harris’s “The French Kitchen” recipe book, which I borrowed from a friend. She has a recipe for Gratin Dauphinoise which I now love. It’s not terribly cholesterol friendly, but hey! I have a Danacol Yoghurt drink every morning so I’m okay. (Just don’t tell the doctor!) I’ve also piled a load of vegetables and little lamb chops into the slow cooker for tonight’s dinner. I don’t use the slow cooker very much (generally because I don’t want to be browning meat at 6.30 in the morning!) but it seemed like a good idea today. Last time I cooked a meal in it, it was still semi-raw after 10 hours. So I’m going to check this with an hour to go so I can bung it in the oven if necessary. I’m hoping I’ve put so many veggies in (by that I mean vegetables, not vegetarians…) that I can zuzz the remainder for a pasta sauce tomorrow.

Saturday afternoon: Mr D took part in a cycle race yesterday.

Mr D and his partner, Céline

Mr D and his partner, Céline

While they cycled round the countryside, IMG_0274 arriving back 34 minutes later (which was not a winning time, but was, apparently quite respectable) I went for a wander around St Germain Laval,where the race was being held. More pictures

IMG_0281 IMG_0276 (dammit, I’ve forgotten how to turn my photos round!)

Sunday morning (again): I’ve been to take my cherry tomatoes and garlic out of the oven. Hmm’mm. Description from introduction to recipe: “This rich, sweet soup relies on the traditional ingredients of Gascony for its powerful flavours.” Judging from the state of my cherry tomatoes, the “powerful flavours” will include a distinct charred taste. They are as black as a very black thing. Nous verrons…

Saturday morning: Pomme caught in a position that really doesn’t do her justice. But it makes me laugh!IMG_0265 (Sorry, it’s yet another Lie On Your Side photos. I really must ask my IT Consultant (Mr D) what I need to do.)

This post is too long. I shall stop wittering on now.

Pootling along

Monday, September 21st, 2009

Not much new really.

I went to see the Head of the Lycée/collège today. They want someone to take some conversation lessons, but unfortunately at a time when I already have commitments. I’ve left them my timetable, as the English teacher said they were exploring other ideas and perhaps I could get involved at a later date. So we shall see. This didn’t come about from my mailing, as I thought, but from a business card I stuck up (by sheer chance) in a small boulangerie in the town. That’s the second enquiry I’ve had through this – I really ought to find some other places to put a business card!

My vertigo has decided to come back. I think it’s something to do with being sleepy/tired. Although I feel like I’m getting a good night’s sleep (at least 7 hours a night) I still wake feeling quite tired. Mr D says I snore terribly (the latest description is like a ball bouncing on a raquet – including the vibrations! I can’t quite imagine this, but I think it must be bad! I feel sorry for him.) so I’m going to go and speak to the doctor, in case it’s sleep apnea (sp?) Coupled with my dizziness maybe I should be worried… Yesterday it came on me all of a sudden on the way to church -thank goodness I wasn’t driving! So I spent the whole service sitting with my eyes closed: I didn’t take much in. Not that I do anyway, as I still struggle with sermons in French.

This evening I’m going to join the local Chorale. My dear friend Paul has persuaded me along.I have a strong voice, but it’s not that musical. When I was in plays-with-songs in Milton Keynes I was never told to stand at the back and mime, as some of my friends were, but nor did I ever get parts in “proper” musicals performed by the Operatic Society. I did audition, but never got very far. I had singing lessons for about two years, which I thoroughly enjoyed, and I think there was some improvement – especially in confidence – but I’ll never be a soloist.  A good voice would be one of my dreams…but so would several other things. I’m not sure which I would choose.