Thursday, 26 June 2008

Life in the Languedoc



You've probably all guessed by now that my life is one long holiday. Drawn out day's spent soaking up the sunshine by the delicious pool and breathing in the pure honeyed air whilst listening to the frantic buzzing of the bees and sweet birdsong. Sometimes I wonder how I find the strength to pull a cork I really do.

My current guests are the most delightful bunch of American ladies. It's difficult to refuse a handmade chocolate from Toulouse and it would be rude not to join in, when invited, a fascinating conversation of how different our lives are. I don't know who is enjoying whose company the most.

They were utterly intrigued as to why I had a basket full of snails hanging on a door. I explained that whilst I was gardening I had somehow unwittingly turned into hunter/gatherer for the neighbours and that the snails were to eat. The screams of horror emanated around the normally quiet village. Like I said, we are having so much fun together.

I'm beautifully poised as usual and awaiting the arrival of a man coming to fit two fire extinguishers. French regulations see, and we wouldn't want to not toe the line when French bureaucracy is involved would we ? more than my life is worth. They say the guillotine is a thing of the past but I wouldn't trust them not to produce a piece of paper saying that I am the only person left in the entire world who is not exempt so I'm keeping my wits about me. Only actually I'm a tad concerned that officialdom will decree that they must hang in an entirely inappropriate place and be aesthetically displeasing to the eye. Will the man try and bore an ugly hole in my treasured and restored wooden panelling in the hallways and what will happen when I protest ?

Will I retain my composure and argue in an elegant and reasoned fashion or will I resort to type and argue that they are being downright dumb and insensitive ?

And if it all goes horribly pear shaped what on earth would I wear as an Englishwoman destined to the guillotine for you would all be treated I'm sure to a full page spread in The Daily Mail of yours truly. And as the drums roll and I'm led away burning with shame what will I cry out in defiance ?

I can't tell you. It would cause a revolution.

21 comments:

LittleBrownDog said...

Oh non, non! Zut alors! Do they not still use La Guillotine en France?

Your lovely image of snails dangling in a basket has given me an idea for my garden...

Sally's Chateau said...

Zut alors indeed LBD, I shall change my post immediately and proceed with indecent haste down to the pool to join my guests as the man did not show up. (Welcome to France)

Edward said...

Surely you wouldn't with to be a martyr for the sake of a couple of fire extinguishers? Aren't they a Good Thing?

Sally's Chateau said...

Indeed Edward, fire extinguishers along with pool alarms, smoke alarms, bars at all windows on the top floor are a good thing but I might consider being a martyr to highlight French bureaucracy at its most idiotic.

Elizabethd said...

You dont need to argue, Sally, just let a tear creep out of your eyes...they will fall into line immediately. It does work.

Milla said...

the door of friendship opens, the door of fire extinguishers slams in your face banging your toe to boot. Rules, love 'em. Not.

Frances said...

Sally,
Glad extinguisher man postponed his visit. Enjoy the pool!
Best wishes xo

lampworkbeader said...

They say Mary Queen of Scots wore red for her meeting with the axe, but I have a feeling that's just not your colour.

Crystal Jigsaw said...

What do snails actually taste like? I have to try some when I go to Brittany and Amy is bursting to try them.

CJ xx

Exmoorjane said...

Snails (and molluscs in general) not my game but good on you for selling the little sods.
Fire extinguishers? Hmm, methinks you need a canny little FE cover - rather like the ones for radiators.... I see a whole new business opportunity here (but boy, what a boring business it would be). jx

bodran... said...

I always imagine snails to be sort of bouncy when chewed. urghhhhh. You big meany sending them to the guilotine or frying pan! with there dear little eyes beseeching you to release them. mon due have a heart.......
Definatly red to the guillotine for obvious reasons [and full length to hide the burned legs] xx

Westerwitch/Headmistress said...

Fire extinguishers all present and correct here . . . we will bail you out if the gallows loom . . . Nooooo you can't condem those poor snails to death . . . look what happened to me when I accidently upset some mussels that may, or may not be there!!!!!

Pondside said...

Butter, the size of a small egg.
I clove of garlic.
A good heavy frying pan.
Your basket of snails.
Yummy!!!
Feed them to the fire extinguisher fellow and avoid the guillotine.

Blossomcottage said...

Oh a nice bit of Vivienne Westwood, all flowing and beautiful with a handbag made in the shape of a fire extinguisher and in years to come a musical could be made about you plight.
Blossom!

muddyboots said...

beware of the Snail Liberation Front, l hear they are 'staging' photos to expose cruelty to snails then sending snaps to national dailies!

Inthemud said...

How did it go with the Fire officials? Is there a horrid hole in your beautiful pannelling or are you heading for La Guillotine!!

Lovely post, your life does sound one long holiday, but it must be hard work you just take it all in your stride.

Pipany said...

How funny Sall, the first thing I thought when you said you were having an extinguisher fitted was that it wouldn't look right! Hmm, I'm obviously less practical than I thought xx

Sally's Chateau said...

Just when I was beginning to think I would have to drape the Union Jack around myself and fasten up with safety pins à la Liz Hurley a very nice man turned up indeed and fitted the extinguishers most elegantly. But hell, now I'm wanted by the Snail Liberation Front. The first person to go to the Guillotine in France for daring to eat snails ........(there's a first time for everything y'know)

Frances said...

Sally, I so admire your spirit, and ability to re-assemble your strength! Looks so strange once I have typed it, but meant to be a strong compliment!
xo

Fire Byrd said...

Snails... I've eaten them, they're like erasors flavoured with garlic, as far as I'm concerned... wheres oysters are to die for.

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

Lovely blog! We have enjoyed our visit, and shall return!