Saturday, 15 August 2009

Hot summer days

Not sure where the time is going but the days fly by. I can't pretend that I am very busy or working particularly hard. Last week Céaucé celebrated it's Saints Day of St Ernier with its traditional procession with floats and brass bands followed by a BBQ supper on the village square. There weren't as many floats this year and the band which usually comes from Belgium was missing too. This year no candidates came forward to be elected 'Miss Céaucé' so we had 'Miss Ambrieres' and her attendants to grace the possession, beautiful as usual. I think it may be time for a 'Mrs. Céaucé' if the youngsters are not interested. We went to the supper, and met up with some English friends there. But it was so noisy that it was almost impossible to have a conversation, particularly when the band started up and the singing started. The less I say about the food the better. While we were eating the heavens opened and the rain flowed through the tent. However when we got home there had been no rain at all. It had been a very isolated storm.

Found some cherry plums growing in the hedgerow so have taken the opportunity to make some jam.

The blackberries continue to ripen and I have made my first batch of Bramble Jelly. I also used some to make a sauce to accompany a panacotta the other evening.

Modern Art in our B&B bedroom an empty picture frame.

Tuesday Rob and I set off for a couple of days in the Loire Valley. We drove straight down to Angers and then followed the river to Saumur. We spent some time walking around the town, but it was very hot and humid, so not very pleasant. We continued on to the village of Fontevraud which has a wonderful old abbey. As the two hotels were both fully booked we found a B&B just on the edge of the village. Luckily we were able to get a table at the hotel/restaurant in the centre of the village. We had a wonderful meal served outside in the courtyard of the restaurant, see link.
The next day we visited the Abbey - should anyone be passing this way we recommend a visit for more information:

Dominique, one of our neighbours is here for two weeks holiday from her work in Paris, so she and Serge came on Thursday for supper, It was good to catch up with them as she is often busy when she is here at the weekends and we don't often get the chance to chat.

Today we visited the annual manifestation at St. Fraimbault, as usual it was very well organised, lots of local producers of food and drink, demonstrations of farming techniques, exhibitions of tomatoes, rabbits and chickens, beautiful displays of flowers and a classic car rally. It was very hot and after having a look at all that was on offer we came home to spend the rest of the afternoon under the trees in the garden where there was some breeze.
The photo shows my dad looking at one of the cars last year.

The garden continues to supply us with a good selection of vegetables. The tomatoes are now ripening quickly giving us a constant supply, however the ones growing in the garden had been hit by blight so I think I have lost all of those. I have removed all the effected parts but it was such a severe attack I don't think there is much hope which is a shame as they were heavily laden with fruits. The neighbours are being overwhelmed by courgettes so although we have plenty of our own I have taken some of theirs to start this years chutney production.

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