Tuesday, July 1, 2008

crétin des alpes

When I was down at the lake this afternoon for a run and a swim I bumped into Madame La Mairesse and her second-in-command in the car park. After the obligatory bisou (cheek kissing) and "oooh isn't it hot", I bade them bonne nage (have a good swim). They both looked at me like I was a cretin, which is exactly how I felt as soon as the words were out of my mouth. As if the mayor is going to go off swimming with her deputy (who looks like Fester from the Addams family) - at least in broad daylight anyway. Not to mention the fact that she has a swimming pool chez elle (the pool house for which is bigger than her house. That's like living in a council house and driving a porsche). I should have realised that they were down there on official mairie business since the main topic of discussion at the réunion d'information (public debate) last week was what can be done to improve the facilities down there.

Something has uprooted my basil plants and also left a large bottom-sized depression in the middle of my lavender bush. BB suspects our resident badger, which has a set at the bottom of the garden. A few years ago I found an injured badger in our wood shed (I assumed it was injured as it wasn't moving but I could see it was breathing) and phoned the animal rescue service. When I tried to explain about the badger they hung up on me, but knowing my French back then I probably said something like "show us your badger". My friend K Bear (who speaks fluent French) phoned them back and they said "laisse crever" - let it die. Charming! Anyway, it had gone the next day - so maybe it was just sleeping off a big lunch.

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