Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Armistice Day.






The 11:15 service at the war memorial. The mayor resplendent in beige rain coat, red tartan pork pie hat and tricoleur sash. He reads out the letter from the President of the Republic. Angus catches the unusual phrase " they died that France should retain her greatness and  position in the world ". The children lay flowers then the names of the fallen are read out. 'Mort pour la France' intoned after each. The mayors grandfather the first on the list, Madame Bay's grandfather the third. She pulls a lace hanky out of her sleeve and wipes her eyes. The little lady in the purple hat climbs onto the steps surrounding the memorial and sings the Marseillaise. The tremulous sparrow of a voice drifting into the autumn air. The young farmers join in lustily if tunelessly. Not so much a sad day as a family one. The true France profonde.

On our way home 'the font' observes that this is our sixth Armistice Day in the Rickety Old Farmhouse. 


A rare recording of the Marseillaise sung by the diction perfect Mireille Mathieu. Probably the best ever. Listen to the rrrr's. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SIxOl1EraXA


6 comments:

  1. Being a Scot, Angus, I hope you were rolling your rrrr's with the best of them!

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  2. Six years....amazing.

    A family atmosphere sounds comforting.

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  3. You write about village life with bemused detachment ( which we all enjoy), but it feel like home to you?

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    1. Maybe not 'home' but a good approximation of it.

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  4. Angus I always enjoy your writing and how well you convey the events....I felt as if I were there.

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