May 8th Victoire 1945.

Victoire 1945 or V-E Day is one of the three French National Days or Fêtes National. The other two are 14th July, Bastille Day and 11th November, Armistice Day.

May 8th marks the end of WW11 with the French and their allies gaining victory over Germany. Actually, the German army surrender on the 7th May but Stalin demanded that the German Army surrender in Berlin the following day, which they did in the presence of representatives from Great Britain, France, the Soviet Union and the USA.

Unfortunately I was unable to attend the ceremony yesterday which was disappointing but my photographer was there to record the event on a very wet and cold morning. Thank you Paul.

The parade and the raising of the French flag is always an emotional moments.
 

Marie, representatives and the people of the village.
 

A few words from the Marie and the singing of the La Marseillaise.
 


The lone trumpeter, always brings a few tears to my eyes.
 
There was an aperitif afterwards at the Marie.
 
 

Advertisements

My Return to Daglan

But first a Cats Update

Good news, both of the stray cats who where poisoned last Monday are doing very well. It was a worry especially for one of the cats who we did not think would make it, thankfully she did. She is just gorgeous and Association Pirate are hopeful that they will find a home for her. The agony they both had to suffer this week was heart braking. Our vet thinks that it was very old snake poison that you can not buy now. The Cat Association are looking into it, we do not want more cats to suffer.

Now follows the blog that I intended writing last week but as you can imagine events happened that took precident.

My Return to Daglan

As we drove into Daglan on a sunny Saturday afternoon we were greeted by a display of the most amazing vintage cars.

Paul had collected me at Bergerac airport from my return flight from England. I had been travelling for over seven hours so I was feeling a little travel weary and low in spirit, I needed something to galvanise me once more. Admiring the cars and talking to friends in the village certainly did the trick.

This is my favourite. I can just imagine driving this car with a picnic hamper on the back to a gorgeous place by the river.
 

Bonny and Clyde or Al Capone springs to mind.
 

Josephine Baker kind of car. More diva than the other vintage cars.
 

Unsure what era this particular car dates from but it does remind me Elliot Ness.
 

Absolutely gorgeous.
 

A few of the owners who were dressed in the fashion of time that their vintage cars came from.
 
 

The Cowslip Primrose is in Bloom.

“In A Cowslip Bell I Lie”.
William Shakespeare – Tempest.

I felt very nostalgic upon seeing these gorgeous little cowslip flowers a few days ago. It reminded me of my childhood in Yorkshire, England. When the pastures and meadows were full of cowslips in the spring time.

The Cowslip Primrose is a herbaceous perennial plant from the Primrose family and can be found throughout Europe and Asia. The name could be derived from Ancient English for cow dug due to the flower being found in cow pastures. Or it could just be a name for boggy ground.

It was mentioned by Pliny the Elder for its lovely early flowering, at that time it was used as a ritual plant.

The cowslip leaves can be used as a salad or the flower for flavouring wine and vinegars.

Very rarely seen in England now.
 

Here in the Perigord the flower can be found in the woodland area’s or wet meadows.
A gorgeous little wild flower.
 
 

Easter Events:-

Sarlat, Giant Easter Egg Hunt in the medieval quarter over the Easter weekend.

Jardine de Marqueyssac, Easter Egg Hunt Easter Sunday and Monday in the afternoons.

 
 

Judgement of Pétassou 2019.

Bathed in spring sunshine the Judgement of Pétassou was performed by the children of three local Primary Schools. In true Carnival spirit the beating of a drum is heard in the distance as the Carnival begins to meander its way through the streets of Daglan.

Pétassou is placed onto the trailer towed behind the decorated tractor which leads the procession.
 

Children follow the tractor in their amazing costumes which show the various cultures of the world.
So cute and gorgeous.
 

Helped along by the teachers and parents.
 
Cowboys, Native Americans, Spanish etc.
 

Time to sing and dance and ward off evil spirits for another year.
 

Pétassou is then placed onto the bonfire for his sins. Winter is gone, Spring is here and good times are ahead.
 
 

Events at Castlenaud-6th April to the 5th May. Guided tour and firing of the trebuchet and new this year, the shooting of the cross bow. Plus, face to face with an arquebusier of the Religious War. Both offensive and defensive equipment of an arquebusier.
Le château de Castelnaud

So forget Brexit and come and have fun and enjoyment in the Perigord.
 
 

The Dark Knight from the Tower of London.

We had a brilliant afternoon last Saturday at Château de Castelnaud where a Medieval Heritage Weekend was being hosted.

There were artisans who make swords and armour, demonstrations of various techniques and moves in sword fighting and the why and when you would perform the moves in medieval combat. With the highlight being James Hester and Stephen Pasker Shellenbean giving their extremely interesting talks and demonstrations of sword fighting from the 13th and 14th Century.

James and Stephen are historical experts in Medieval combat. James was curator of Tower Collections at the Tower of London no less. Both of the men gave talks and demonstrations in English and it was translated into French.

James Hester the Dark knight.
 

Waiting to start the tournament.
 

Stephen and James demonstrating how to win against a larger and stronger opponent.
 

James stated that the swords were extremely light and that every part of the sword could be used in hand to hand combat. Unlike those epic tournaments depicted in movies a typical fight would only last three or four strokes of the blade. While Stephan talked about the education of the Medieval Knight which consisted of geography, sciences, Latin, mathematics and music. For example, mathematics for judging how near the opponent is to you, their arm span, height and weight. Music for timing and movement, so that you strike at the key moment and move quickly out of the way. But first a knight was taught wresting from a young age, which helped to build muscle and agility so that they could use the skills in the practice of sword combat.

The tournament begins with a challenge from Kevin. The score was calculated by how many strokes made contact with the opponent.
 

A presentation of civil fencing in the 12th to 14th centuries by Olivier Gourdon and Franck Cinato.
 

An artisan describing his work producing amazing custom made armour. You could have a complete set made and be armoured head to toe in only two months for a suit of plain armour, somewhat longer if a pattern was introduced.
 

Amazing work.
 

I have always pictured myself as the next Arogorn or Legolas from the Lord of the Rings. Well a girl can dream. This sword was perfect, so light allowing me to give a good swing, it was excellently balanced.
 
 

Event:- Daglan this Saturday evening at 7 o’clock – Soiree Cabaret with Paris-Londres at the Salle Des Fêtes. With an aperitif and nibbles. Ten euro per adult and three euro for children.