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07 July 2006

July back home again

Enjoying our gallerie

We had to drive all the way home in one go to get back in time for Jean Paul’s farewell party. It was a long and tiring 9 hour drive, but we made it fine, to enjoy a great party.

It has been a busy time socially, as only a day later, there was the annual dinner for the village held in the courtyard of the mairie. Again lots of fun, but another late night eating and drinking. Since then it has been all go almost non-stop.

We have had Monsieur Garcia (Gilbert) working here tiling the floor of the downstairs bathroom and living room, a big job. We had to move all the furniture out and pack it into a bedroom. That was bad enough on a hot day, but much worse was the several trips to Macon to buy the tiles and bags of cement and grouting. It must have been about 38 degrees, and we were a ball of sweat. The load was far too heavy for our car so we had to make 3 trips. Then there was the
loading and unloading!!

I picked some cassis and the last of the gooseberries, and the next day while recovering had a cool day inside topping and tailing for the freezer.
Another trip into Macon to pick up a pergola we had ordered, and we were just too tired to start putting it up. Wednesday we went into Cluny to watch the match.
John Paul told us that there would be a few big screens for the match in town, so we decided to go in for the fun. And it was great fun. The cafe de paris had the street closed at their corner with a huge screen (rained out later) and our old pals the Bistro had a screen, plus a few others. We decided to go to the Bistro and eat there so we could have a good view of what was happening all over, and it was sheltered so we didn't have to worry about the storm..Talking about the storm - such a relief to have some rain and the temperature cooled down a bit, so welcome. Anyway all a lot of fun and all I can say is I am glad we were not staying in Cluny, such a great excuse for the 'young' to make a lot of noise, horns blowing, mini fireworks etc. It was good to eventually leave for the peace of the countryside. Sunday will be quite something with France in the finals. As they say 'allez les blues'.
Now we have managed to put up the pergola, what a struggle. We had to get two other bodies to help lift it into place. Its bigger than we wanted but I think it will be fine when the climbing rose grows all over it.
John has been helping set up our little local church for a concert tonight which we are all looking forward to. It is so rare to have such an occasion in a little village like this. There are three young people coming from the Paris Conservatoire to play - a flautist, pianist and a singer. The programme is Bach, Handel, Schubert, Ravel and Boehm. Should be lovely. We are eating at the little house beside the church first with some friends who are staying here for a few months.
Otherwise it’s the garden, walks, French lessons etc. After a massive storm, and a lovely drenching of rain, it is steaming up again, but don’t think the rain has finished. The phone broke down as it often does in a storm, and left us without a contact line for a few days. All working and fine again.
Gilbert’s tiling work looks superb – in the end I think it will be much improved.
Our palaeontologist neighbours have a dig going on the hill above for the next three weeks and have a team of students and professionals helping. Jacqueline and Alain have to provide meals for all, so it’s a lot of work, and I have undertaken to provide two meals a week to help her. They are marvellous neighbours, and it’s good to find a way to be of help.

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