Sunday, August 27, 2006
What is happening in this aveyronnais field? Any ideas?
PS on September 1st : I didn't know a bunch of dirt could get so many comments! See below for the answer -- and some creative ideas.
(Photo courtesy of Thierry Jouanneteau, taken on May 30 2006. Nothing is that green here now! )
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
You've seen it in winter , so now how about a look at what I see from my home office window - what I have come home to. The dryness of late August here always shocks me, but for the moment it is mercifully cool -- temperatures in the 70s.
The Aveyronnais are quite "frileux" -- they don't care much for feeling cold and often harangue their children about covering up. My French colleagues are often in huge pullovers when I am wearing a T-shirt.
Today I took my daughter and a friend to a local outdoor swimming pool, and there were fewer than ten people there. It's a beautiful sunny day, the school holidays are still on, but few locals dare swim outside unless it gets well into the 80s.
Saturday, August 19, 2006
I just got back from six weeks in Olympia, Washington, where I spend all of my summers. It always takes a few days to get in the swing of life in France, and I know it will be the same this time.
A friend from Aveyron visited me for a day while I was there. It's the first time anyone from my French life -- other than my husband and children, of course -- has seen me back in Olympia.
I picked him up at the Greyhound station, having thrown on jeans a casual T-shirt. I hadn't bothered with make-up either. Later he told me I looked so great, relaxed and at home that he could feel that I was just that -- at home.
His comment puzzled me. Was there really an obvious difference? After 16 years in France, do I still seem somehow unnatural there?
All I could find to answer was: "Here, I'm not a foreigner."
Thursday, August 10, 2006
Wednesday, August 02, 2006
Aveyron has a huge number of dairy farms, especially sheep's milk producers who supply cheese-makers such as the huge Roquefort industry. The neighboring Lot department is more famous for goat cheese, but Aveyron produces some.
These Aveyronnais goats seem curious about what lies ahead for them. Probably the usual: milking, eating and a few trots around the farm.
(Photo courtesy of Thierry Jouanneteau)