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Burpham after food

August 12, 2012

So we walked to Burpham, sadly pronounced Burfum by blog hating locals obviously to avoid any columnist such as myself making any jokes about wind. I am so disappointed when people see the shallowness in my writing and react accordingly. The walk took about 40 minutes on the way there, and about two  and a half hours on the way back. It would be rude of me to reveal who amongst us fell over 7 times on the walk back, or to discuss what occurred on one occasion after a fall, or the repeat episode when we got back and headed for a siesta, but if I were to mention the old adage of waiting ages for a bus and then two come along at the same time, you may get my drift.

Lunch at the George and Dragon, which has a very good reputation locally was not a triumph, mainly because we quite stupidly chose from the rather limited printed menu and, after ordering discovered a range of special dishes available on the day, chalked on a blackboard. My pork belly with celeriac was quite good but that nice lady decorators pint of prawns was not. A load of pregnant shrimps was far too fiddly and unsatisfying, but luckily satisfaction came later for her albeit in a rather different way.

By that I mean of course that was very satisfied by the Pinot Grigio on offer, so satisfied that it took 6 glasses to sake her thirst. It was a beautiful summers day but one thing with which I have become reacquainted and wish I had not is stinging nettles. I took this picture of the Waterside Cafe in Arundel as we set off. It seems that during the Arundel Festival which starts next weekend, this is transformed into a champagne bar for the 10 day festival duration, a real hardship that we will no doubt be forced to support for charitable reasons (the festival is operated by a charity).

Waterside Cafe, soon to be champagne bar

Another disaster delight that is denied us in France but seems to be prevalent in the UK nowadays are car boot sales. There is often something similar in Valbonne, where they are called vide grenier (literally empty your loft) but as that nice lady decorator will tell you, size is everything. Also, the range of detritus available to buy is that much wider. Personally, I shall be on the look out for a couple of mountain bikes, although with one amongst us often not good on two legs, two wheels might be even more dangerous. Has anyone ever seen a mountain bike with stabilizers? The sale takes place at a village called Ford, which is also host to Ford Open Prison, a prison for low-level offenders not considered dangerous to the public, like, presumably, petty thieves. Does no one else see the irony of a car boot sale being located next to an open prison? It is very thoughtful of the organisers to give the inmates an opportunity to sell and ill-gotten goods to the general public with no questions asked.

If it remains sunny, and there seems to be some doubt about that, I believe it may prove thirsty work and a pub may feature after the no doubt crazed buying spree in which I shall not be involved.

I am on the countdown to my return to Valbonne later this month where I shall be able more easily to continue my work with Currencies Direct. Flights are booked, shorts will be packed and wine will be drunk. Peachy Butterfield and the lovely Suzannne will be joining is at this time. I wonder if there is anything left in his 10 litre box of appalling red wine that he left before he left as it were?

Chris France

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