French Property News magazine.

Black Diamond.

Towards the end of last year I was asked by the editor of French Property News Magazine to write an article for them about how we found our home, the buying process, the renovation work, Daglan village and the surrounding area. At first nerves took hold and I thought no, then on reading past blogs and our experiences, who could forget the arsenic paint on our toilet door, or the shower that kept me practising Yoga every time that I used it!, I thought yes I can write the article.

The editor loved the article and our pictures and it was published in the March issue of French Property News magazine and now the April issue has been published I can show my article in our blog for you to read. I hope that you like it.

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Childrens Carnival

The Judgement of Pétassou

Last Wednesday on a gorgeous sunny day the children from Three local Primary schools got together for the Children’s Carnival and the Judgement of Pétassou.

The tradition dates to the Medieval period and is performed all over south western France to welcome the start of Spring. Pétassou was the object of a thousand evils from theft to explosions, he is tried by the children and condemned, then burned for his faults, therefore bringing an end to the cold and frosts of winter.

The Carnival ProcessionThe Carnival Procession was lead out of our local Primary School and around the village by Maire P. Dussol and 2nd adjoint Thierry Cabianca.

You can see the effigy of Petassou in the trailer on the back of the tractor.
 

So cuteSo cute, dressed in animal or insect costumes.
 

Superb head dressersAnother school sported superb head dresses.
 

Walking FishThis class had made themselves up to be fish.
 

Bless her,Bless her, a sit down at the front of our home. She did rejoin the Carnival on their return through the village.
 

Anita, and one of the mothers  enjoying the day.Anita, and one of the mothers in face paint enjoying the day.
 

Singing and dancing was performed by all of the children.
 

Burning of PetassouPétassou’s effigy is burned in the open ground at the Salle des fêtes in the village.
 

Spring is hereSpring is here.

More pictures at the schools of the RPI vallee du Céou website.
 

 

Events:-

Château de Castelnaud-la-Chapelle from April 1st to May 1st, sword fighting lessons for children aged five to fourteen. From April, Demonstrations of a crossbow from the Hundred Years War.

Easter Monday, Sarlat Easter Egg Hunt around the Medieval Town.
 

 

Fred and Ethel!

It is pouring with rain today so a walk down the many pretty lanes near our village is out of the question. However, we did take some pictures a few days ago on our cold but sunny morning walk.

Walk through our village of Daglan and turn tight in the direction of Saint-Cybranet you will see Fred and Ethel guarding one of the local fields.

Fred and EthelFred and Ethel, as you can see are stick people relaxed and leaning backwards, Fred on the left and Ethel on the right. I really should get out more!
 

After taking the picture of Fred and Ethel I realised that the local stable ‘Les Écuries Du Claud’ looks like it is sinking slowly into the mire!

dscn2326The stables are build below road level but the effect is quite unusual. You can see Peyruzel on top of the hill in the background.
 

Turn right at Les Euries du Claud and it will take you along a lovely country lane.
dscn2318You will walk alongside the river Céou on the left and see more horses on the right.
 

dscn2331Passing the time of day chatting with one of the locals.
 

Walk a little further and you arrive at a park, there are wooden benches here so that you can sit and enjoy the view.

dscn2333Spring is in the air, Catkins by the turbulent river.
 

dscn2338Back into Daglan and a gorgeous array of colour.

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

A long way for fish and chips.

Fish and ChipsOur son has travelled a long way for fish and chips, he is in Daglan for a visit, so what better way to spend some time than enjoying delicious fish and chips, curry sauce, tomato ketchup and vinegar, Yorkshire tea, plus a free glass of fizz, eaten on the veranda with stunning views across the Céou valley, wonderful.

I’m Sorry to say that last night was the last meal at Le Thé Vert restaurant in our village. Judith and Paul are closing for good and have put the premises on the market to sell. So if anyone is interested in a restaurant or a home or both, check out businessesforsale.com

Their excellent service with a friendly smile will be missed in our village. Thank you from the bottom of my heart Judith and Paul for helping us in times of need, for cheering me when I have been down and for always bringing a smile. Happy holidays and we shall see you both soon.

Summer is ending!

As Summer slowly passes in the Perigord I am reminded that one of my favourite things about living here is experiencing the advancing of the seasons. Each season arrives over a few weeks with gradual alterations to the countryside that makes watching the newly progressing season a constant treat. As summer winds down it brings cooler air in the mornings and more and more of the forest transforms to a wonderful rust coloured brown. It is still quite warm in the late Summer sun with temperatures in the higher twenties or lower thirties, but not the “wow I am so hot”, feeling that Paul and I have experienced over the last month or so. Eating alfresco and long walks are certainly more pleasant through the months of September and October.

“But when fall comes, kicking summer out on its treacherous ass as it always does one day sometime after the midpoint of September, it stays awhile like an old friend that you have missed. It settles in the way an old friend will settle into your favourite chair and take out his pipe and light it and then fill the afternoon with stories of places he has been and things he has done since last he saw you.”
Stephen King, Salem’s Lot.

 

changing of the seasonFirst signs of Autumn, the falling leaves in the lane as we walk towards the old mill.
 

changing of the seasonThe old former mill in Daglan on a gorgeous late summer day.
 

changing of the seasonTaking a relaxing few minutes, watching the gentle steam of water go by. It is hard to believe that the water level in the Céou has reduced so significantly over the Summer months.
 

changing of the seasonThe Summer months have exposed the various islands in the Dordogne river at Castelnaud-la-Chapelle
 

changing of the seasonHeron hunting for fish it completely ignored Paul while he was taking this picture.
 

changing of the seasonThe chalk cliff face on our walk from Castelnaud-la-Chapelle to Milandes. Well to be honest that was my plan but I think on that particular day we walked half way then had to turn around and walk back. We need to get fitter.

September is the ideal month for visiting the Perigord, with much reduced tourist traffic and more comfortable temperatures. On that note we are having two lots of visitors to our home this month. The first is a friend whom I have known for at least thirty five years. It will be her first visit to the area and I am so looking forward to seeing her and showing her our gorgeous village of Daglan and the surrounding area. The second visit is from our son, so we have been making a list of things for him to see and experience, One or two of the many Cro-Magnon caves in the area are in order and canoeing on the Dordogne with Paul, while I sit on the bank, camera at the ready ;-)… or read my book.

“What good is the warmth of summer, without the cold of winter to give it sweetness.”
― John Steinbeck, Travels with Charley: In Search of America.

Meet and Greet at the Salle des fêtes.

What a wonderful idea to welcome newcomers to the charming village of Daglan and to meet French, Spanish, Dutch, African, Scottish, Canadian and English residents, the list goes on so I’m sorry if I have missed anyone out.

We needed something to be happy about after last Thursday’s vote in Britain, the meet and greet organised by La Club de l’Amité Daglanais and the Mairie was a tonic, for a few hours at least we had a rest from the terrible news.
 

DSCN1478On a gorgeous summer evening alongside our beautiful river Céou, we gathered for a drink or three, introductions and  friendly chat.
 

DSCN1473Our wonderful new friends who have helped us greatly to integrate into the community and have told us the best places to go for furniture, DIY, flowers etc.
 

DSCN1477Trestle tables were arranged with enough food to feed everyone.
 

Daglan Meet and GreetHere is one of the people who have spent a lot of time making our village look gorgeous with flowers and children’s displays. I think that he liked his photograph being taken!
 

DSCN1480After meeting, greeting, eating and drinking it was time for the bonfire to be lit. Angus and Paul were shocked to see so much wood being burned, more shelves for our homes did spring to mind.
 

DSCN1486We danced around the bonfire and it was great fun, doubly so due to the fact that I have not been able to dance in a long time. With constant back pain for several years then recently falling down the stairs I have been having phsyio treatment and I am glad to say that the magic fingers have worked, no pain at all… I know, I can not believe it either, but it is so, the Health Service here in France is wonderful, but I digress…
 

DSCN1487People from every nationality joined in the celebrations, brilliant.
It was a lovely evening meeting lovely people, a good time was had by all.  My warmest thanks to the village of Dagan.