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Mona Lisa spotted in Valbonne?

October 21, 2011

So tennis commenced again yesterday morning at the Vignale Tennis Club. It is not often one can claim to have won a set 6 – 0 but on this occasion I can. It may well be that the excitement of such a victory in one set may have affected later play, but I would prefer not to dwell on that, the pertinent fact is the 6-0 thrashing administered to our opponents the Wingco and Mr Clipboard in the second set by myself and master mariner John Mundell.

That I have now finished with drink and socialising for a few days is in my mind a certainty. A very long lunch after tennis with our party being the last to leave by a very long chalk, was the perfect way to set up a period of abstinence, which is the state you will find me in for the foreseeable future. Obviously the notion of “foreseeable” is something that the more myopic amongst of a fleeting concept that many amongst us cannot see clearly, but let me be clear here, I will respect the wishes of that nice lady decorator, even if she should decide to break the self-imposed vigil of abstinence.

Talking of that nice lady decorator, today’s picture was taken last weekend whilst she was at play with the Mona Lisa, aka Melissa Graves, sadly on this occasion bereft as her Welsh gardener Ieuan, however no sign, as far as I can see of her husband Nigel either.

The Mona Lisa smiling enigmaticly whilst that nice lady decorator cackles incessantly

Today then, nose against the proverbial grindstone. What a stupid expression. If you put your nose against the grindstone you would very quickly have no nose, and if that sentiment were expressed about a dog then the Revered Jeff would have the riposte here in a jiffy “A dog with no nose?, how does it smell?…..terrible”. Shall we instead say that a little more attention to work is required for a day at least after the vicissitudes of life when Mr Clipboard is in town.

But let me cast my mind back to lunch at the Auberge St Donat, post tennis. Mr Clipboard left at 3 20 precisely to make his next appointment but that unfortunately was not the trigger that it should have been for myself, master mariner Mundell and the wingco to leave, oh no. That would have been too simple. Instead we remained, discussing matters of great import no doubt until sometime after 4, by which time most of the doors and windows were shut and no more wine was forthcoming. At this stage even the Wingco got the hint and we left.

By this time, talk had turned to the fanciful notion of a chaps only skiing holiday in early December to Val d’Isere. I say fanciful because with the Wingco a committed non skier, and that nice lady decorator no doubt a committed non believer in such a concept, the idea would never get off the ground (is this the correct expression?) except in the master mariners household where, it seems, his word is law as long as his wife does not get wind of it. Thus I expect to hear no more of thid tantalising prospect, at least until the next time it is after 4pm in the Auberge St Donat, the place where dreams can live, albeit fleetingly.

So, in order to justify my existence, I must press on with some music clearance tasks and I need some new customers to open accounts with Currencies Direct. It’s safe, saves you money and makes me happy, what else can matter?

Chris France

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