Monday, June 6, 2016

" Unexpected intrusions of beauty. This is what life is.”

The sound of hooves alerts the PONs to the fact that four young horses are being led through the village. Their first experience of roads and traffic. Ever serious Bob leaps onto his stump seat and glares. Sophie stands on her hind legs and emits a high pitched squeal that tapers into silence. That ' Why can't I come out and play ? ' sound.

Of all the places to drink from there's nowhere quite like the swimming pool. It's not been opened for the season so is still full of stagnant, chlorinated, water. Delicious !

The female PON is ordered into the back of the car.

8:00 am. In the neighbouring town. The old combatants are having a D-Day ceremony. A notice outside the town hall informs us that this is " The day when French soldiers landed on the beaches of Normandy and began the liberation of their homeland ". 

Two wreaths are laid in front of the statue of the First World War soldier. The statue had been painted to make it look life like but unfortunately the colours ran. This gave it something of a 1960's flower power look. It was briefly sent away to a specialist firm to be scrubbed clean and coated in a half-sheen varnish. 

Gentlemen when they reach a certain age 'potter'. These old combatants have reached that pottering age. Having commemorated past glories they stand with furled flags , happily doing nothing, until one by one they disperse. '' My wife will be expecting me ". The last to go, resplendent in a red beret and a blazer weighed down with medals, stands in the road and halts the non-existent traffic so his colleagues can reverse out. All the cars are no-nonsense French makes. Nothing foreign here.

There is something rather touching about this dwindling groups sense of duty and camaraderie. Old soldiers never die they simply .....

Angus and the PONs walk down to the waterfall. The soil crusted on top but sodden underneath.  Last weeks torrential rain has washed most of the recently planted sunflower seedlings away. Those that remain are slowly being baked into place. It's said that sunflowers are the hardiest of crops. We'll see.

If you have a chance listen to this interview with a surgeon who has been working in Syria. If you're in a rush jump to the 5.30 and then 28 minute marks.

'' Unexpected intrusions of beauty. This is what life is ".


Taste of France said...

The veterans in your town are much more active than here. It's touching.

WFT Nobby said...

As so often, Desert Island Discs reaches the parts other programmes don't.
Cheers, Gail.

Coppa's girl said...

Will future generations honour their forbears with the same reverence, or will they just be forgotten in the ever increasing desire of "political correctness" to forgive and forget?

Bella Roxy & Macdui said...

The young horses are experiencing roads, traffic and PONs.

BaileyBobSouthernDog said...

In their hearts, the old combatants are still protecting their homeland.