Wednesday, 30 June 2010


RC COES were finalists - not winning was not mentioned - and the
mayor hosted the apero and dinner to celebrate.

Here the town assemble to cheer -

-Kate immortalises the event-

Msr Charlie looks curiously wistful -

and we trot off to the little
park by Franks old house; where dinner is eventually served.

Me and Kat ate earlier and Leo and Scottish Dave joined us
afterwards. I left them all partying; too hot, too energetic for me.

Tuesday, 29 June 2010

Annie and Petes paradise

Here are Annie and Pete swimming with my Lily in the river
Salz next to their new home in Couiza; what a paradise.
Dinner in the garden was marvellous. *sigh.

Incidentally if you are wondering why the mighty Aude has
turned the colour of boiled tea, its because 400 tons of mud
tipped into it on Saturday at Saint-Martin Lys between Axat
and Quillan. It happened during a storm around 5.00pm
when a hill was dislodged. Mercifully no-one was hurt though
obviously the road was closed. Its since been cleared but there
are still restrictions; better check before heading out that way.

Monday, 28 June 2010

Franks birthday party

Just because Frank celebrated his birthday in
England - just because he doesn't live here anymore - doesn't mean he can escape Tilling.

Here he is with Liz. Both clearly continue the traditions they established here.

Come and visit soon, you are still very much missed. Le Cantou has a table reserved for us.

Sunday, 27 June 2010


It never occurred to me that RC COES wouldn't win, I don't know
why not
my neighbour described it as 'une catastrophe.'

On the very very plus side, Annie and Pete are here from their
travels and remain for three weeks. Phew.

le foot v. rugger

Noone Ive spoken to is much bovvered about le football (except
for Leo, who wants England to beat Germany because then
Holland gets to play England which is easier for them, he says);
the excitement in Tilling is because RC COES are defending the
championship of France today. Our little town allied with Couiza
is hoping to carry the trophy back here again. There are flags and
ribbons everywhere. In Couiza, where I snapped the above, there
are portraits of the players plus sponsor names gracing the streets.
Half of Tilling has decamped to Toulouse for the match. We wait
for news....

Saturday, 26 June 2010

Leigh pulls it off

Another great party from Leigh and Lorraine!

Feel something of a woz as left a brill party early to catch
the last of the light and water my neglected trees.

Lorraine said, do it in the morning and stay here and dance.
I was enjoying myself and feeling guilty so left and by the time
home loomed the light had gone and it was too late -
and too knackered to go back.

Thursday, 24 June 2010

Housextension warming party

The weather was in collaboration with Aileen and Ulla B last night - what a fabulous evening -

We disported ourselves hither and yon under the trees as the very nearly full moon rose and the musicians played...

Though the big excitement of the evening was Aileens bra. Her first ever. Much admired and evaluated as an engineering feat.

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Much better now, thank you

Missing Louises party didn't exclude me from breakfast en
famille yesterday - here are parents, Mike - Andy's dad -
with Patricia, Louise's mum :)

and Andy with Barbara, his long-suffering mama.

Having been set up for the day, it was well-rounded off by
apero with Margaret, here seen displaying another talent; she can
talk on the phone whilst opening a bottle of blanquette. She got a
round of applause followed by dinner at the Creperie.

Shall we have a little competition to see who can do what whilst
opening a bottle? Ulla Bendick and Ailleens party next - thursday -

Monday, 21 June 2010

from the bed of pain

Whilst lying around with sinusitis I put
some of the new paintings onto a blog;

(theres a link on the side, where the links are-
under the ads, I think)

Please only tell me what you think if you like
them, still I'm very frail .

Also watched the entire series of Rising Damp.
Big love to Annie and Pete for lending it to
me. Extraordinary, in those distant days they
were talking of ecology, the ozone layer, the
imminent apocalypse. Were they ahead of the
times or have we always been anxious?

Sunday, 20 June 2010

insult to injury

Been looking forward to this weekend; Debs birthday on Friday
and Louises on Saturday.

Not a good time for the sinusitis to strike.

Friday night I spent in bed. Saturday was fine and I expected to
be able to trip the light fantastic but by 7.00 was in agony.

Many thanks to Sue to introducing me to anti-sinusitis pill and
to Kate for bringing an erm, devise that you spray up your nose,
though if anyone had bought me a hammer and nail l'd have used
that on my face - if you suffer from this curse you'll understand.

so, last night was spent sipping hot marmite and sobbing while y'all
had Louises party without me.

PeterG sent these pictures over...

nicely creative Pete! Anyone else got any more?

Friday, 18 June 2010

therapeutic painting

A great days toshing at Sue and Jons, not only fun but you get
good lunch.
The place has to be finished soon - very soon, actually - so there
are lots of willing helpers -

here are the two Victorias
happily engrossed. Kelly
escaped before I could snap
her and Daisy and Danille,
John and Liz will have to
get done another time.

Im getting really bad at this

Will try and make up for it at
Lous tomorrow...

Thursday, 17 June 2010

Our Steve

Steve is making a flying visit - two years since he jumped ship
and moved to Edinburgh. Still missed.

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Living it up in the Aude

It is a little-known fact that we have rather a good library in
Tilling. Opening hours for this years sell-off are are
Tues. 22cnd June and Friday 25th, 2.30 to 6.30; Weds. 23rd June,
9 - 12 and 2 - 6.30; Sat. 26th 9-12.00; plus Sunday 20th 9-12, as
advertised above -
See y'all there!

Sunday, 13 June 2010


Did you see the match last night? We watched on french TV
which had the attraction of an amusing commentary - lots of
OOh la la's which helped to make up for a very dull game.

My favorite was when the commentator described Peter Crouch
as 'comme ma tambourine'
I don't know if tambourine means something else in French but
since he was leaping and heading at the time suspect not.

Bob left this morning after a very quick visit - arrived Friday.
Glum. Kat sweetly took me to Alet-les-Bains where rain made
the vide grenier a very dismal affair -

But then Edith came round with this superb bio lettuce; who
can be sad in the face of such lettuce?

-and tonight the newly-returned Pete, the present Kat and possibly
others are hoofing it to T-Rex for a spot of proper french cooking.

happy news

Our little town is trilling with the happy news of Louise's
I wanted a photo of the scan to post but for some reason
don't have a copy.
The baby is due on Issac Newtons birthday, 25th December,
so astrologically we can expect great things -

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

abandon hope

Like most of us whose lives were disturbed by the building of
the new home for Alzheimer sufferers, I was consoled by the
fact of its existence and the assurance that it would be there
for me and my mates when our turn comes.

This morning my neighbour was telling me the sad tale of a
friends' slide into the disease.

And the dreadful news that there are 26 places in the new
home - for (so far) 100 people waiting.

I guess we live long enough to get it now. I'm off to discover a
cure, other than death.

Monday, 7 June 2010

my two best men

here are Bob and Larry, in London - wish I'd been there too -
big kiss to Barbara for the photos. The group ones are being
distributed and may end up in art works.

Saturday, 5 June 2010

Youth: kill them?

Last couple of nights have been noisy with the bands of these
parts playing on the stage behind the school, by the river.
Not sure this photo gives the
flavour - think dry ice and light shows, not that it matters
because its the noise that counts. Friday nights was
dreadful, I thought, and last nights rather good - but hey,
actually, thats neither here nor there really. Though one
wonders why the event is no longer in the square but by the
house of the ex- mayor.
What matters is not the vomit by the river nor the litter - all
this will pass - but the fact that the local kids inevitably pull
the flowers out of the flower boxes and hurl them about.

I propose that the town hall remove the flower boxes before
an event, or put little wire cages around them so that a
healthy electric shock brings young blood to its senses.

Friday, 4 June 2010

dinner with the neighbours

My neighbours Jeanette and Louis invited me to dinner. Their
son Michel was there; their friends Francis and his son Philippe

We started with fish soup with toasts coated in garlic mayonnaise
flavoured with saffron, with a crust of grated elemental. With
that we drank muscat.
There followed a large coquille St Jacques; the corals of the
scallops in a cream sauce under a pastry made largely of butter.
With this we drank a chardonnay.
Then came a salad; very simple, those green leaves with red tips,
about 2 ins wide, not the green and red wavy ones. They were
dressed in olive oil and wine vinegar with a little salt - that was all.
Next was the guinea-fowl. The insides - don't ask - had been
taken out after cooking and liquidized with ham and liver, spread
on toasts and baked with home-grown preserved tomatoes, done
with herbs and garlic. Naturally we drank rosé, a Tarvin - new to
me- pretty good.
Cheese next. I had a chevres from Bugarach and a Chantal, with a
good red wine which I loved but the others thought wasn't
perfumed enough.
A *light* gateau next - pear at base with a great deal of cream
and crunchy stuff and a blanquette, methode ancestral.
Coffee. Home made mandarin liquor from home grown mandarins.

Louis has a respectable bass voice and sang selections from
Carmen and Verdi.

They are off to Cuba soon to celebrate their 60th wedding

I'm stunned. And stuffed. No wonder the french are happy and