By half past six the sun is up and the heat beating down. The sunflowers in the valley are at their peak cheerfulness. Let's hope the Village Fleuri judges are keen on sunflowers.
Back at The Rickety Old Farmhouse, Loic, the heavily bifocaled gardener, is busy tidying up the driveway in case the judges decide to wander into the garden. The PONs 'help' him , then get bored.
The bench on the village green that was a rather feminine blue has overnight received a second coat of green paint. It now matches the graveyard gate
The judges arrive not at ten, nor at noon , but at twenty to three. '' Gascon time " says the mayor with a gallic shrug of his shoulders. The Village Council are out in force. The mayor is resplendent is his red, white and blue sash, grey crimplene trousers,peach coloured short sleeved shirt and his red and green plaid pork pie hat. The judges are younger than one would imagine. I have they feeling they might be regional government fonctionaires who've volunteered to judge village plantings in order to get out of their offices on hot summer afternoons. They're due to spend thirty minutes in the village before heading off to their next appointment. They spend forty five. A good sign ? The results will be known in three weeks time.
It is scorchingly hot. Bob emits a indifferent 'woof' as the judges pass by . If it was ten degrees cooler he'd watch them from his stump seat. His sister lies in the shade of the downstairs hallway. From time to time her tail wags to indicate she's ready to guard her flock at a moments notice.