Samedi 3rd January 2015

It’s three months today since we arrived.  We ain’t going home yet!

Since the last update we hosted Susan’s sister Debra and her husband Gordon.  There were a couple of highlights which were specifically barred from mentioning on here – which is a pity but I’ll do as I’m told.  (Debra you owe me at least 5 euros!)

They arrived on the 23rd slightly delayed and we found the airport in plenty of time.  Limoges airport isn’t the biggest but you can wave to passengers as they climb down the steps off the plane.  Returning via Limoges’ Xmas market which had ice-skating, sledging, folk on stilts and fish and chips!  Then on to a Bibliotech style restaurant, which S and I had been to in March, where we all ate well.  My duck was particularly lovely.

On the 24th we took them into SYlP in the mist and I got another haircut from my chatty barber.  Again I managed to bumble thru the conversation which was good.  Then we started prepping for the excesses of the Festive’s and had drinks with Jan and Keith which was lovely.  As is typical of the period I had a song going around my head, many will have been afflicted by a seasonal ditty, I however had a timeless number rattling about my empty noggin which was prompted by comments made by John Mackie on the scourge that is Facebook.  The following picture should be seen a nice one of some of our near neighbours and not IN ANY WAY a reference to floppy haired penalty box diver Gerry Britton…

Horse's erm behind/Some of the neeiigghhbours!

Horse’s erm behind/Some of the neeiigghhbours!

Xmas day went well, S and Debra beavered away in the kitchen while I wrestled with prawns.  Gordon managed the process from in front of the fire and often from behind closed eyelids – we christened him the snooze chef – he did however wash up after so that was braw.  S was very pleased with the dinner as were we all, Beef Bourguignon for the carnivores.  For some reason my Rovers diddy Cup DVD was not the top of everyone’s viewing list.  We went for a walk and D & G were impressed by the size of one of our neighbour’s wood pile…

Wood Pile envy...

Wood Pile envy…

Boxing Day we pottered around nearby seeing a chap and his saddled donkey walking thru SYlP, which prompted more questions than we could answer.  We went on to visit Segur le Chateau and Payzac then lunched in Lanouaille at an Auberge which was properly French and worried our visitors a little.  We all left more than happy, my duck which was a different from the previous nosh was just as good.  Oddly Monsieur le patron looked a lot like my former NELO colleague Kenneth but the French version was a lot more active in his work…  😉

The next day we got to Limoges airport in plenty of time for D and G’s flight to discover the airport wasn’t opening until 10.00.  There were only two flights in and out so it made sense, we waited, then went in and saw them off.   On the way home we found the large art shop Jan had mentioned to us which will ably be able to keep S supplied.  Also a shopping area which we will re-visit when everyone else is back at work.

We had an unusual SYlP experience struggling to find a parking space outside a supermarket that was busy!  Much of the local population were stocking up on drink and sea food for the Bells.  We got 10e off a shop due to one of our loyalty cards – which must make us pretty local.  10e is a lot to a habitually low paid person like me!

Massive Chateau!

Massive Chateau!

Otherwise we’ve done a couple of little road trips, heading down the D704 which is something we’ve not done much, into the Dordogne.  The first trip saw us going as far as Hautfort where the Chateau is a tad impressive.  We’ll visit again when it opens in March before the tourists make it less pleasant.  On the way back we had a light lunch in a lovely wee cafe in Excideuil.  It was just us and a nice British chap who was working there so we were able to have a blether, in English.

Thiviers Chateau

Thiviers Chateau

Our second trip (yesterday/Friday) was actually meant to see us heading northwest.  After making the mistake of buying petrol when the Intermarche had been shut the day before, the poor lad in the kiosk was selling petrol and gas canisters and it appears that the locals were not just burning the midnight oil at New Year so it took nigh on 30 minutes to fill the tank and pay.  Anyway we set off and about ten minutes later I realised we were going the wrong way, our direction being more south western – it was all embarrassingly my fault.  As we’d been so delayed and our planned trip was rather longer it wasn’t an issue, that trip can wait as we are time rich.

So once my beamer had subsided we continued on the road we were on and went instead to Thiviers which seems a cool town.  It’s yet another of the ones with a well presented Medieval centre.  Our visit was at lunchtime so we had lunch.  La Cuisine was well named and tho there was nothing veggie on the menu for S they did a good omelette for her.  I had a very nice lamb dish, yes duck was available but I’m trying to be unpredictable!  I fear the below property is not in the best shape, perhaps Ernesto from our French classes could cast his professional eye over it.  I think it looks rather old…

This house looks a bit wonky...

This house looks a bit wonky…

On the way home we discovered that the Casino supermarket had had a delivery of Irn Bru.  On arrival here in October we were surprised to see about 7 or 8 cans in the wee GB section of shelves.  They now have about a dozen new cans available after some gleakit numpty had been buying an average of about a can a fortnight to try and fortify himself during Raith Rovers games…

Generally it’s been a bit colder lately – with a few frosty mornings and the wood burner has been doing its job nicely.  However the days are getting longer and it’s been drier than in Jockoland tho not today which has been dreich.

Hope you all (both) enjoyed your celebrations, got what you wanted, spent less than you feared and managed to eat more than you thought possible!

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