Ban on UFO landing!

In Chateuneuf-du-Pape, the Mayor of the town which is traditionally famous for its wine producing area has stated that he has no plans to lift the ban on “flying over, landing, or taking off of flying saucers in the area”. The original ban was signed by the former Mayor Lucien June in 1954, when a man told the local Mayor that he had seen two figures get out of a flying saucer. The current Mayor Claude Avril announced that “it creates a harmless bit of fun for the town”.
 

angry-cartoon-alien-ufo-illustration-looking-47714920Go to Daglan

Image courtesy Dreamstime Stock Images

Other interesting French Laws are:-
It is illegal to name your pig Napoleon
Drinking alcohol at work is forbidden except if it is wine, cider or beer!
It is illegal to kiss through the window of a train while it is on the platform!

Its so Cold

Winter

When icicles hang by the wall
And Dick the shepherd blows his nail
And Tom bears logs into the hall,
And milk comes frozen home in pail,
When Blood is nipped and ways be foul,
Then nightly sings the staring owl,
Tu-who;
Tu-whit, tu-who: a merry note,
While greasy Joan doth keel the pot.

William Shakespeare.

 

My goodness it is cold -10 a few days ago, -7 today but am I complaining well a little but you need the cold to appreciate the warmth of Spring. It is one of the many things that I love about France, you certainly notice the changing seasons – from weather to the seasonal fruit and vegetables in the markets.
 

dscn2191a“This is mine, just try to take it from me”.
 

Like all eccentric people Paul and I do not let the freezing temperatures stop us from going out, so on a -10 day we left the warmth of our home to go shopping in Sarlat. The country side did look gorgeous bathed in a frosty glow but I was observing from inside the car wrapped in a car blanket!
 

These pictures were taken later in the day near Castelnaud
dscn2226We were unsure if the Montgolfier’s were getting ready to take off or they have just landed or the owners were testing them?
 

dscn2225aUp, up and away
 

News:-
Beynac-et-Cazenac: The D703 is closed to the public until 17th February due to construction work to widen the road and pavement. Diversions are marked, and very scenic.

Domme: Major works installing new utilities – electrics, gas, water, drainage and communications, expect road and path closures. All new for the Spring season.

 

Cafe de la Fleur.

A new Cafe in Daglan Village opened last night. Paul and I went out this morning to check it out. It replaces the Brasserie le Bistroquet which has been closed and for sale for a few years so it was great to hear the welcome news that it had been bought by a couple from Denmark who have opened as Cafe de la Fleur. They have plans to further develop the large property to include a restaurant, apartments or bed and breakfast when the renovation work is completed.

Cafe de la FleurLooking good with the tables set in pretty gingham table cloths.
 

Menu
Cafe de la Flour is open for business seven days a week. They sell various types of burgers or you can have a set menu which changes daily for the excellent price of fifteen euros. They also have steak, chicken etc. for a slightly more expensive meal of around twenty two euros.

Unfortunately, they do not have any vegetarian meals on the menu at the moment but they will change the menu on a regular basis according to the customers taste so fish and vegetarian options are to come at a later stage.
 

Morning CoffeeWe popped in to introduce ourselves to find the Maire and various other people from our village sipping a morning coffee. We were made to feel very welcome by the owners who took time out to talk to Paul and myself about the Cafe.
 

Comforting interiorIt looks great inside and they sell good coffee and aperitifs etc.
 

Charlotte and RobinBonne Chance to Charlotte and Robin and all the best in your new venture.

 

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.

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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?

 

Our New Bibliothèque (library)

Daglan’s municipal library had a grand opening last Monday afternoon.  A speech was given by our Maire Pascal Dussol in the garden at the back of the Maire.

DSCN1336Maire Pascal Dussol presenting the inaugural speech.

 

The building was once a presbytère for former priests of Daglan.  After the revolution it became a school and now the Maire has transformed the building to become the Maire, offices, post office and art classes for the primary children of Daglan.

DSCN1341A “glass of friendship” was shared by all, plus biscuits and tarte tatin.

 

Last year the French Government stated that children should receive more education outside of the classroom and more art classes.  This was taken on board by the local school and community.  Now part of the curriculum for children is to go out into the forest which surrounds Daglan with experts to gather a few flowers, insects etc to take back to the classroom to study and then draw and create models of their finds. Now they have the added bonus of the library which is in the room next door to the classroom where they can find any information that they might need.

DSCN1339Books for the older children to study and enjoy.

 

DSCN1338On these shelves are books on the local area and different parts of France.  In the boxes were books for the very young.  The carpet is a colourful road map which the children loved to play on.

 

DSCN1340Adults can also join the library, I found a few French versions of books I have read in English which I intend to borrow, which I hope will improve my French.

 

The library is open every Monday from 16:30 until 19:00 and Wednesday afternoon from 16:00 until 19:00.

 

 

The One Of A Kind!

To be really honest, like many people who was scared while watching the Alfred Hitchcock movie “Psycho” in their early teenage years, I had developed a phobia to showers, in particular showers with curtains! So it was a little upsetting to have a one of a kind shower in our small bathroom in France.

To be fair it did not have a shower curtain but it was a strange cylinder shape that made you feel totally enclosed once inside, I should mention that I am also claustrophobic!

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Our old cylinder shower

 

However, I am not one to shrink from a challenge and into the shower I went, panic at first but then I was so busy trying to keep the non closing door closed to prevent the water going all over the bathroom floor, and at the same time trying to regulate the temperature of the water from freezing to boiling point that my fear dissipated long enough for me to have a shower.

Shower

Not a lot of room as you can see, it had to go.

 

After planning the layout of the bathroom and looking at and testing out showers! I must explain that in order to have a new shower in the bathroom I had to step inside each shower on display in the various stores we visited to test out my phobia, panic or no panic! The result is below, a new shower which is perfect, no panic at all.

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In with the new

 

Now all we need to do is to find an antique wash stand with a marble top and a hand basin to compliment it, remove the tiles from the walls and floor and replace them with something more to our liking, paint the woodwork. The to do list seems to be getting longer!

 

French News:-

Single-use plastic bags are set to be banned from French shops by this month, April 2016. A second law is planned for January 2017, which will ban all other kinds of disposable plastic bags including those provided for packing fruit, vegetables and cheese!

Also, a ‘doggy bag’ law has come into force in France in an attempt to cut down on food wastage in restaurants across the country, brilliant, although I do not remember leaving enough food to take home when I have eaten in a French restaurant!

Solar Eclipse or in other words Wow, Awesome

Adam and I had been planning to view the solar eclipse for weeks, we had decided were to go for the best view in the area, we had purchased the recommended glasses, we were all set. Unfortunately the weather forecast was not good for the North West of England; thick cloud was coming in from the Atlantic and by Friday it was doubtful that we would see anything at all. However, not to be downhearted we raced to the designated spot (Barton Grange Garden Centre car park) and looked up to the sky. You guessed it, thick cloud all across the sky, we were starting to get downhearted when we saw a small break in the cloud and there it was, awesome.

Solar eclipse

Solar eclipse

Solar eclipse

Solar eclipse

Solar eclipse