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3 years of pleasuring the nation

March 11, 2013

Today is the third anniversary of the birth of this column. That means by my calculations that I have written some 700,000 words for the delectation and delight of my readership and in support of my work as fat controller of Currencies Direct for Valbonne. 93,000 hits cannot be a fluke. Lets face facts. I am a genius.

To celebrate this, and the small matter of Mothers Day, we headed up to the Bay Tree in Arundel for a late lunch, accompanied by both Sprogs who had obeyed the three-line whip to be present to celebrate with their mother. The lure if a free lunch in the student world still looms large.

On the way, there was a small diversion by way of The White Hart to ensure proper pre lunch lubrication, after the traditional bottle of prosecco before the off. In a catastrophic failure of planning by the 6 nations rugby organising committee, the start of the game between England and Italy clashed precisely with the time our table was booked, so rugby was off the agenda. This was very short-sighted of them as it denied them several viewers, some others of whom were also lunching at The Bay Tree.

Earlier I had gone for my morning constitutional, this time around Arundel Park, from where I took this picture. As you can see it was once again grey but this apparently presages the possibility of snow arriving overnight, which would be quite exciting except I am awaiting a courier to transport those vital copies of The Valbonne Monologues to France, ready for the launch this coming Friday. Thus until they are picked up and safely en route, the snow must stay away.

Arundel park

The beautiful Arundel Park, greyed into submission by boring English weather

I have received an email from delightful but dim northerner Steve “yeah yeah yeah” Jackson about the Welsh. It seems that he has noticed that the entire Welsh rugby team is ugly and suggested this may be a topic for discussion in this column. He seems not to have taken into account of the less than rare characteristics exhibited by his northern brothers. High foreheads, eyes rather too close together, more fingers the usual on their hands, curved spines, dribbling, that sort of thing. I would have thought that living in the frozen north on the very edge of the civilised world, he is less judgemental about physical shortcomings, but perhaps it is easier to deflect attention by aiming a metaphorical kick at our Welsh cousins, who I know will be doing their best to lose to England in the last game allowing the right country to win the Grand Slam.

After feast at the weekend, famine is scheduled to recommence again today, however, this is probably for the good because there is a six-day feast if all things French on the near horizon. Thursday sees us on a jet plane, off to the land of sunshine, olive oil and the best wines on the planet. France, and in particular,  My beloved Valbonne beckons and I for one cannot wait. A few days of fasting will be worth the delights with which I shall be greeted. Sitting outside, drinking rose, eating great French food, seeing old pals and partying With Peachy Butterfield will surround the book launch days. Cynics amongst you may suspect that having a launch in the morning and finishing at midday might be a flimsy excuse to have lunch thereafter. Those cynics may have a point. However, until I get there I cannot be sure what will transpire. Perhaps instead the post launch schedule will involve quiet contemplation and abstinence from alcohol but I doubt it.

Chris France

5 Comments leave one →
  1. Linda Monks permalink
    March 11, 2013 8:19 am

    Felicitations on your 3rd anniversary, Banjo must be behaving himself recently?, hope all goes well for the launch of your Valbonne Monologues


  2. howzaaat permalink
    March 11, 2013 8:47 am

    Yes indeed, as the good lady says, many congratulations — quite what for, I’m not sure but anyway very good luck for Friday’s launch (or perhaps that should be LUNCH) !


  3. Patrick permalink
    March 11, 2013 8:50 am

    Dear Chris,

    Here’s an ode to mark your 3rd anniversary :-

    The Valbonne Blogger

    Under the spreading grapevine lies the Valbonne blogger, Chris;
    He is a comic, witty man who likes to take the p*ss !
    His colourful turns of phrase make him difficult to miss.

    He goes each Sunday off to Church to hear the vicar spout;
    And pumps him for the gossip he’d otherwise not find out;
    Then sheds a ‘Sarah Bernhardt’ tear to feign remorse, no doubt !

    Cruising and boozing and snoozing – onward in life he goes;
    Each morning sees some blog begin, each evening sees it close;
    Rumour publicized, malice done, he’s earned his night’s repose.

    With apologies to Henry Wadsworth Longfellow !


  4. Winnie l'Ourson permalink
    March 11, 2013 9:00 am

    Bonjour Chris,

    I too have a ditty for you in celebration of your 3rd birthday (aahh, so-o-o young…)

    The Daily Blog

    When this daily blog comes lumbering by,
    You don’t know whether to laugh or to cry;
    ’Cos you know some day it will get you too,
    When Chris’s next yarn may implicate you.

    He’ll write you up and he’ll break you down,
    And his readers will spread the word about town;
    They’ll dish all the dirt and embellish the tale
    And they won’t give a damn WHAT they unveil !

    Your name will be mud and your future bleak,
    And the rumours will make your brain feel weak;
    They’ll tell all their friends and their friends’ friends too,
    And you’ll feel like Hell when they’re through with you.


  5. Rev. Jeff permalink
    March 11, 2013 7:00 pm

    Nice one’s guys !


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