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Bonjour from a buzzy week in France!

Hope you had a good week.

Something strange happened here. I was sitting in my little pigsty writing away (there are no pigs in here now, it’s been rebuilt as a little office for me). I was writing about beautiful Burgundy and its dreamy chateaux (coming up in next issue of the Magazine). It was all peaceful as usual, honestly you could count the number of cars that go by my house each day on two hands if you don’t include the tractors from the farm at the top of the road. Suddenly there was a really loud noise, like the engine of a quad bike but more of a buzz. I couldn’t place it. I put my pen down, figuratively speaking as I work on a PC, and went to the door. The sound was louder but it didn’t seem to be moving away like it would if it was a quad bike.

I stepped into the courtyard to be (building site) and there above my head was a swarm of bees. I kid you not. In all my years I have never seen such a thing. There were thousands and thousands of bees buzzing about. Mon Dieu I shouted, or words to that effect, they were to tell the truth a bit more Anglo Saxon. I ran into the house, called out for my husband Mark and told him to stay inside, ran to the garden to get the dogs and cats in and closed all the windows.

“What on earth are you doing” asked Mark.

“Bees… bees…” I said “there are thousands of them over the top of the pigsty”.

He was a bit sceptical but we looked out the window and sure enough there they were – and I’d left the door of the pigsty open – eek! Being a brave ex-policeman, he dashed across the courtyard, shut the door and ran back. If it had been down to me, the bees would have been home and dry.

We looked up online what to do with a bee swarm. Nothing, said Google. They won’t hurt you, they’re looking for somewhere to start a new hive most likely. Is Google always right? I don’t know but I wasn’t taking any chances.

After about ten minutes of swarming dramatically around the house and the garden they left.

An hour later they were back. This time over my neighbours’ house. I could hear Monsieur and Madame in the garden chatting away animatedly and the clink of wine glasses. “Blimey” I thought “they’re so laid back about having 20,000 bees above their heads… how very French”.

Then suddenly “SACRE BLEU. MON DIEU. REGARDEZ” I heard screams and shouts. The door slammed across the road. Apart from the hum of bees, there was silence. Clearly not that laid back then.

The bees have now buzzed off. Never a dull moment round here – always a hive of activity (I’m sorry, I couldn’t resist it)…

Bisous from France,



ps I wish I could say that’s my garden in the photo at the top, alas it isn’t! It’s Monet’s garden in Giverny looking glorious with the roses out (photo by Carolyn Ansky)…

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