Tour de France and Bastille Day all in one week


There is only so much fun and lad can handle and this week has certainly been eventful, if rather unproductive.

The French have been having a long weekend, running through Saturday and Sunday, bridging (as they say) Monday and into the public holiday on Tuesday. As a result the town is full of people down from Paris: overdressed townies taking the country air and bringing their bored kids with them. Suddenly no-one says “Hello” any more when they meet you in the street, the locals being outnumbered by this influx of people with no manners.

Oh yes, fun: everyone is entertaining in the garden and we have been for several four or five hour lunches with friends.
On Bastille Day we had lunch for most of the day and as darkness fell joined up with more friends for fireworks and dancing on the beach.

None of this has helped my productivity but I did get a little planting done, moved log cabin components from the front to the back of the house and tackled a couple of DIY jobs. We also completed the registration of our gite and B&B with the governmental agency Gite de France in the hope of attracting more bookings.

On Wednesday the huge Tour de France carnival passed through the area, finishing a stage at Issodan and starting one in Vatan, both towns just around the corner from us.

Tour de France start of stage at Vatan

Tour de France start of stage at Vatan

“Hang on”, I hear you say “you did some planting?”
Nothing much, but under the Sequoia, where we have a bit of cool and shade, I replaced a dead standard Camellia with a Holly, Ilex mezerveae Blue Angel. There were also a few Stipa gigantea lying around so I put them in the ground nearby rather than have them continue to suffer in the heat, (by which I mean, lack of watering).
I’m not very happy about the Camellia. It was in a pot and doing OK but I think the drainage holes became clogged up and it died over the winter. It had been so big and strong that this spring I planted it in the hope it might re-root and grow. Sadly it didn’t: another very expensive error on my part. I am considering turning the remains into a walking stick to remind me of my folly.
The front of the pack: Tours de France 2009 - Vatan

The front of the pack: Tours de France 2009 - Vatan

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