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Alsace Dogs and wine

September 26, 2018

I don’t know if you have been listening to the radio this morning but there has been a news flash. It seems the authorities have raided Cliff Richards’ house again as they have discovered something very unpleasant on his computer. Apparently he has a new album of unreleased material on it…

I guess that is a joke in poor taste, so I thought I should exorcise that strand of humour from my psyche. The trouble is that I had to take out a loan to pay for the exorcism and I am naturally worried that I might be repossessed.

So the Arundel Festival, which has run for its 40th year this year, is over and we have departed these shores for the autumn sunshine of Provence, but even although it has been the best English summer that I can ever remember, we still had our lunch party washed out one Sunday and the last Sunday of Festival was ruined by rain, however, other than a few interludes, it has been hot and dusty, a rare combination in the old country.

On the way back That Nice Lady Decorator and I decided to explore southern Belgium and The Alsace, and what a revelation! Many villages in Alsace are stunning. See today’s picture of Colmar. Obernoi is also beautiful but there are any number of other cute towns with wonderful architecture and fabulous countryside. Even the centre of Strasbourg is beautiful. The only problems are the local food and wine.  I have never much cared for Alsatian dogs and dog is the first word that comes to mind when thinking about their wines. I am not good at white wine, I may consider a Montrachet or a Meursault if parched there is no decent red available but Gewürztraminer? The name alone conjures up images of concentration camps and the food? Now I am a bit of a salad dodger but huge slabs of over cooked meat, flaccid white sausages and sauerkraut, a huge German influence, has given me a different take on French cuisine. Basically, if you want constipation and bowel cancer, this is the place to eat. If not, bring provisions…

Colmar

Colmar in the Alsace. beautiful but don’t eat there…

After a couple of weeks in sunny Valbonne, we popped over to Majorca for a long weekend to celebrate the a 25th wedding anniversary. You know you are getting older when most of the social invitation are for 60th and 70th birthday parties and silver weddings. Next blog will have a photo taken at the restaurant that appeared in the Night Manager, a fabulous location and a decent meal.

Before we left, I had a text from Peachy Butterfield. He asked if we were in, which we were and I asked him why he was coming around “to drink the rest of that rose I started last week” was his response, and true to his word, he did just that. He tells me he is moving to Spain to escape the warm embrace of the French tax authorities. He told that he had been a bit lackadaisical recently, well,  for the last 20 years, since he made myself redundant on Oct 1997, and has decided that he needs a job. Make no mistake this is a complete life style change for the big fruity one. However, his choice of employment as an agent for the best currency exchange company F.C. Exchange, is exemplary.

And so, back to the daily grind until at least the weekend, then off to Malta for a week. As I am being accompanied by my accountant, Clive “Dog Biscuits” Slater, he will not be surprised to know that I have marked the trip (and indeed the no doubt swingeing expenses) as a business strategy trip and an AGM for good measure…

 

Chris France

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