A ‘pinch myself’ day

For most of the time, Len and I just get on with whatever is planned for the day. But every now and then we have a ‘pinch myself to see if it’s true’ day. ‘Do we really live in France?’ Yesterday was one of those days.

In the morning I met up with a small group of ladies from the french church we attend. We travelled in convoy to the Chateau of Brissac where a guide told us what to look out for and explained some of the history – in french. I found it difficult to follow the dates but I managed to pick up some information about the chateau. It is the highest in France; it contains a theatre built specifically for the nineteenth century marquise de Brissac who was an opera singer; one former duchess loved hunting and was still hunting side-saddle into her eighties! In the cellars we were invited to try some of the Brissac wine.

We had lunchBrissac chateau then drove to the home of one member of the party. She had prepared a beautiful dessert and I enjoyed my first cup of Japanese green tea.

Although we conversed in french most of the time, the group included someone from Hong Kong, Taiwan, Madagascar, two English and ……. two French. I felt very privileged to be accepted.

Half an hour at home and then it was time for the end of year meeting for the Association where I teach. We talked about how the year had gone and lessons we could learn. Meanwhile,   Ernesto, the jovial Spanish teacher, was busy preparing a huge paella on a barbecue outside.

We started with a Sangria fruit punch and nibbles, then paella and to do the job properly this was followed by cheese, small cakes and cherries for dessert, a variety of wines, including a red from Brissac and finally coffee.

After some interesting conversations and feeling very full, we finally left for home at about 11.30. All in all a lovely french day with lovely people.



Retro cycling in Saumur

The Loire is a wonderful area for cycling since it is so flat and there are many cycle routes, but once or twice a year there are special events where cyclists have priority. Today is retro cycling day but we have also seen vintage cars and vintage bikes making their way to Saumur. A huge parade ground is given over to retro stalls, foods and events and we saw some wonderful costumes as we made our way to church this morning.

Cycles and cyclists in retro dress

Cycles and cyclists in retro dress