I hope you had a great week.
I can hardly believe how quickly this year has whizzed past, but here we are, almost at the end of it already!
First, I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for subscribing to my newsletter, for the lovely emails you send me in reply, and for all your support, your likes, shares and comments on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. Really, an enormous thank you…
Napoleon’s in the house!
This Christmas I have guests – three baby cockerels who are living in the house! They arrived very late in the unusually warm season, at a time when chickens aren’t normally born as its usually too cold and wet in these parts. Of course, as soon as they hatched the weather changed to frosty, so they need extra TLC.
The Bread Man, who already thinks I keep pigs in the house due to a language misunderstanding over the fact that my office is in the former pigsty in our garden, raised his eyebrows when he popped in for a cup of coffee to warm up last week and saw, Genghis Khan, Charlemagne and Napoleon the cockerels throwing themselves at the side of the cage wanting to peck him. I could see Bread Man’s eyes darting about. No doubt he was looking for the non-existent pigs he is convinced are here somewhere.
With my baguette this week he brought with him a local, traditional Christmas cake called a Coquilles. It’s been made in the far north of France since at least the 16th century. They’re not for the faint-hearted – a large, sweet brioche bun filled with butter, sugar and raisins, and yes, just looking at one makes you put on weight.
Chez nous – the zoo
“What is the word for zoo in English” asked Bread Man as two of my four cats brushed past, my three dogs barked in the garden and several vocal chickens sat on chairs on the terrace, staring in the window and clucking away, while dozens more ran amok with the ducks and geese.
“Zoo” I replied.
“Non” he said in a tone of disbelief, much like when he asked me what the English word is for croissant.
“No” I replied
“It’s not non, it’s no.” He has asked me to correct his pronunciation so he can pass on these pearls of wisdom to his daughter who is learning English at school.
I’m pretty sure that he will be telling the rest of his customers, Madame Merde (my septic tank blew up, it’s a long story) has a zoo in her house. And, her chickens are voyeurs, (can’t wait until he asks me what the French is for that one!)…
Wishing you a very Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and a very Happy New Year,
bisous from France…
Editor and author of My Good Life in France
ps Photo is the Christmas tree at Galeries Lafayette, Paris…
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