Winter months in Daglan

A few people have asked me what we find to do in the Winter months here in Daglan. Last year we spent most of our time on renovation projects. This year we have been taking it a lot easier and we have found more time to do the things that we love. Of course the renovation is still on going but it can wait a few more weeks.

Paul has been working on a new web site for an artist who lives in Beynac, he had an exhibition here in Daglan last year. His name is Dominique Allaërt who paints in watercolours to create the most gorgeous and atmospheric paintings of the Perigord Noir.

Dominique ALLAËRTHere he is.

On our first meeting to discuss his web site he was up early in order to bake Paul and I cakes, how nice is that?

Artist at workHere is Dominique at work in the square last Summer.

So if anyone is interested in his art please check out the web site https://www.art.ourfrenchdream.com/

He will be in Daglan during the Spring Festival on March 19th exhibiting his painting at the Old Presbytery and a further exhibition at the same place in August.

If you are interested in a new web design please contact us.
 

To refresh and develop my skills in various media I have returned to my design work and have focused on embroidery in particular silk stitch and cross stitch. At first I embroidered basic flowers on a cushion, white and red roses which represents Yorkshire for me and Lancashire for Paul.

The Wars of the RosesThe Wars of the Roses

Happy with the outcome I let my imagination take hold and started to plan out the Elven King from the Hobbit films. It took quite a long time to complete but really relaxing and rewarding.

The Elven KingThe Elven King
 

Events :

Clement Bouscarel
24th February
Clement Bouscarel.
Admission 10€, children under 12 free.
Cake and Wine after the performance.

Carnival
22nd March
Carnival parade through the roads of Daglan by the schools of the Céou valley

Sculpture extraordinaire Lau. Dussol.

A work of art has been created from a dead tree which stands just outside the library opposite the church in the village. Instead of digging the tree up and taking it way the Maire and the Commune decided on a brilliant idea of transforming the tree into a work of art. M. Lau. Dussol was duly commissioned for the task.

Paul and I have taken many walks past the tree over the months and seen the transformation. Starting from the bottom up two people came into view.
 

dscn2146On this side is a lady wearing traditional dress and clogs.

 

dscn2145On the other side is a gentleman in a top hat.
Above them both are various heraldic shields, one of which is the shield of Daglan.

 

dscn2144What I love though are the gargoyles on top of the tree at the back and sides, with the dove of peace at the front.

 

Now consider the artists tools, most of the work was carried out with a chain saw which really highlights the fine skill of the artist.

He was also commissioned to create a totem pole for the Primary School in the village, brilliant.
 

dscn2203A proud Maire and I admiring the artists work.

 

Event:- See you all at Sarlat Truffle Festival on Saturday the 14th January, we will be the couple eating truffle macaroons, they are so good.

Doctor Zhivargo comes to Sarlat!

Sarlat Christmas Market.

The Christmas market in Sarlat consists of about forty chalets, all offering artisan products from Christmas decorations, toys, paintings, candy, macaroons, chocolate, scarves, hats to beer, mulled wine, snacks and more. Our first visit to the market was last Thursday but I am sure that there will be more. I love Christmas and the Christmas market in Sarlat fills me, and I am sure many others, with joy. This year the Christmas market and indeed the Medieval Quarter and the main streets all have a Russian theme, which looks brilliant.
 

Entrance to Sarlat Christrmas MarketEntrance to the market along the red carpet, which is to be found in the main car park in Sarlat. The Commune have spent over a month getting the car park transformed into a winter wonderland.
 

Russian Winter sledgeRussian Winter sledge which brought back memories of the film Doctor Zhivargo, I could just picture myself sitting wrapped up snug and warm alongside Hugh Jackman. I know he was not in the film but a girl can dream.
 

Russian dolls I love this collection of Russian dolls for sale, such vivid colours.
 

Fresh baked PretzelsFresh baked Pretzels, oh my another temptation, trying to loose a few pound before Christmas has never been so hard, I think that I will leave the diet until the New Year!
 

Artisan potteryAll hand made pots in different colours.
 

St PetersburgSt Petersburg back drop in the centre of the Market.

There is also a large ice skating rink for all ages and of course Father Christmas is to be found at the entrance. The market is open until the 30th December.

Messing around by the River.

“If we had no Winter, the Spring and Summer would not be so pleasant”, Anne Bradstreet.
 

When the nights start to draw in and the temperature starts to plummet it is good to look back to last Summer.

Paul and I love to take a walk no matter what the season and last Summer was our first full Summer here in Daglan so we made the most of the sunny days. We had just walked through the village along the main road towards Saint Cybranet and turned right at the stables to bring us to the Céou River. It was a really hot day so we stopped to have a rest and chill out a little by the old water mill.

Unsure if the man and his two dogs were fellow villagers or here on holiday, but they were great fun. He had thrown the ball into the river so that the dogs would go in, retrieve the ball and stay cool at the same time. A good plan but it did not work, neither of the dogs would go into the water. So Paul took off his sandals and paddled into the river to retrieve the ball. The water was not very deep and he soon threw the ball for the dogs waiting on dry land.

Paddling in the Céou RiverMessing around in the River
 

‘The best laid plans of mice and men’ sprung to mind when the Border Collie’s thought ‘wow, good game’ and hit the ball back into the river for Paul to retrieve. Needless to say I had to stop laughing in order to take the pictures.

Just a few more times please“Just a few more times please”.
 

How to be a great artist:-
Assuming the Poseone has to stand in a certain way!

The artist is Dominique Allaërt who held an exhibition at the Presbytère throughout the summer, he will be returning to Daglan next Summer for his second exhibition here.

By the way the painting was wonderful.
 

I hope that the above pictures warmed you a little on a cold and damp day.
 

Event:- 4th December at 3 o’clock at the Salle de Fate, Daglan. Theatre, 8€ each

Tethered, a PSVR game by Secret Sorcery.

TetheredI just had to say that our son is awesome, he helped create this VR game. Tethered is a new virtual reality game by Secret Sorcery, where you take the role of a god overlooking the lands of the very adorable peeps.

tethered-peep

The ultimate goal of the game is to free the spirit guardians of the thirteen islands by collecting spirit energy. There are many challenges in the form of helping the peeps gather the spirit energy and resources as well as fighting off monsters.

Being in virtual reality the peeps react to your every movement therefore creating realism in the game. You will also have sky objects such as the sun or clouds and buildings for peeps that will give you certain bonuses. Snow clouds that will give you armour, rain will re-grow crops, you can also gather clouds together to from thunder clouds.

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So check the game out at https://www.playstation.com/en-gb/games/tethered-ps4/ for more information.

15032920_10157661661935368_786982290998809877_nOur son’s present from the bosses at Secret Sorcery.

Images courtesy of
http://www.secretsorcery.com
https://www.playstation.com
http://www.wearepsvr.com

 

Back to France and Events:

Sarlat has a Craft Fair on the 25th and 26th of November at recup’acteurs .

Vitrac has a Christmas Fair on the 26th and 27th November.

Truffle Market on the 3rd December in Sarlat.

The Christmas Fair in Sarlat is held from the 7th December to the 31st December, the chalets are already being built in the large car park and the Christmas lights are up on most of the streets.

 

 

 

 

So Long, Leonard Cohen.

So Long, Leonard Cohen

There have been so many awesome people that have died this year and today I heard about another extremely talented man, Leonard Cohen.

His music and poems will last forever in song, for example… Suzanne, Sisters of Mercy, and my favourites Hallelujah, and Hey That’s No way To Say Goodbye.

A remarkable person.

So Long, Leonard Cohen

The Purple Pansy Eater of Daglan!

After filling our tiny border with pansies last Spring a curious thing happened over night, something had selected pansies to eat and not just any pansies but only purple flowering pansies! Whatever it was left the yellow, orange and the white pansies alone. Thank goodness my sister was visiting, she remembered an old Yorkshire trick of putting a glass in the soil which was part filled with beer, the slugs love beer and would fall into it quite happily. No more problems we thought… incorrectly, during the Summer months another curious thing happened, again it seemed at night when another selective insect or slug had arrived which eats every leaf in sight except our jasmine plant!

Purple Pansy

An example of one of our tomato plants which resembles worn lace curtaining after a cat had played with it for a while – large and small holes on every leaf. After a few weeks the beast strips the leaves and in a few cases it kills the plant. We tried several home made remedies and some shop bought repellent which the insect or slug seemed to love because they returned for more. Then friends of ours were talking to an artist, who was exhibiting his paintings in Daglan, about garden problems and he told them that this problem was new to the area and had happened in his garden in Beynac. He went on to tell them what the problem could be and how it could be treated.

DSCN1656

The culprit that the artist described was this particular moth, it’s the larvae that does the damage. So armed with this local knowledge we can now make up a spray for the moth larvae and a backup of slug pellets which are both animal and environmental friendly. So far so good no more problems we hope!

If you have this problem the moth treatment is called Pyrale du Buis and the slug pellets are called Anti-Limaces Ferramol which you can buy from a DIY store or Garden Centre.

DSCN1664

Now for the wow factor in our garden, two bunches of grapes ripening in the sun. I know not many and we will never be in competition with the local vineyards in our area but it is our first ever grape vine, so our first babies. The vine was bought as a twig which blossomed, the instructions said not to let it set fruit for the first year, but…

 

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Now they are nearly ready to eat, Paul and I just tasted a couple of grapes – wow

 

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A couple of new additions to our meagre garden, we have a well which we were not using until a few weeks ago. Now we have a water pump that has helped tremendously in the hot weather to water our plants which seem to thrive on the fresh spring water.  We also have a water feature that looks great and our cat, the birds and bees use it to drink from.

Event:- Brocante 4th September at La Roque-Gageac.

News:- Johnny Depp has relisted his French estate for sale at wait for it … €50 million, which is double its original asking price. The former village near St-Tropez was marketed by Sotherby’s International in June 2015 but was removed from the market after a few months. It centres around a village square and includes a church which was converted into a guest house, his former five bedroom home has a pirate themed wine cellar, two pools and a art studio… any takers?