Monday, September 22, 2014
An autumnal feel to our mornings. It's staying dark now until seven thirty. Bob and Sophie stand at the courtyard gate watching the school buses pick up their charges. Three worldly wise teenagers slouch on the town hall steps. Two 'bad' boys smoke a cigarette, furtively, behind the gazebo. The little ones stand with their mothers by the war memorial. They've been back at school for three weeks but some of the five year olds still have the forlorn look of convicts being shipped off to Devils Island.
The young fireman who plays left wing for the local rugby club comes barreling out of Flagrant Desire, the improbably named local jewellery store, and runs straight into 'The Font'. He's paid off the final instalment on the engagement ring and is steeling himself for the important task ahead. '' Do you think she'll like it ? " he says opening up a small red velvet box. '' It's zirconium and diamond ". 'The Font' looks at the ring and after a moments pause says ' It's quite something. She'll be the happiest girl in the world '. The young fireman's face lights up. As he heads off on his motor bike he stops, lifts his visor and shouts back ' Thank You '. One of life's truisms : Never stint on encouragement.
The routines of life in deepest, deepest France profonde.