Out for our morning walk. All the usual stops. War memorial, fire hydrant, church porch, the tree outside the Salle des Fetes. Bob trots along beside me contentedly. Sophie weaves and wanders with every fresh smell, sight or sound. By the pond the old farmer ( not to be confused with the very old farmer ) and the farmer with the enormous red bulbous nose are standing staring at the reconstructed 16th century pottery kiln.
'' Bonjour M'Ongoose. They've asked us to test fire her " says the old farmer combining explanation and greeting in one sentence. ' Big job. Big job ' adds his bulbous nosed colleague in case I'm unaware of the enormity of their challenge . ' Got to reach 1600 degrees . Might have to replace some bricks to stop heat seepage '.
Despite the warmth the old farmer is wearing grey track suit bottoms , a red check shirt and one of those tartan hats with fur flaps that Canadian lumberjacks wear. His red nosed colleague is identically dressed except he's wearing jeans of a peculiarly voluminous cut . Maybe it's some kind of kiln restorers uniform ? We express admiration for their technical skills and leave. Sophie licks the old farmers hand.