We’ve been home for a week now and – catching up with sleep aside – it’s been a busy time. After restocking the refrigerator I got to work making batches of ratatouille and of cauliflower soup. Now I’ve got a few weeks’ worth of meal accompaniments squared away. The fruit, vegetable and herb plantings have gone well in my absence: I’ve made my first dill harvest and I can see peas, strawberries, and tomatoes are leading the pack against the blackcurrants, apricots, plums, aubergines, zucchini and capsicums.
The weather has returned to the mish-mash of rain and shine, cold and heat that we saw in early May – I had a cold and incipient hayfever then, both have returned but just at minor discomfit levels. Reclaiming the lawn from prairie status has been my other priority - much of it will have to be done at least twice to get it back in order.
Today I’ve submitted my documents to renew my French visitor visa. I had to stop by a Trésor Public to buy some tax stamps to accompany my application. When asked for my name for the accompanying receipt, I say “Michael, comme Michael Jackson”. The clerk asked “and who might that be?” and giggled. So much more human than most of the bureaucrats I have to deal with! Alas, she still typed it up as Mickaël.
|The happiest part of today was having my first swim of the season at Lupiac. Munson had a great canter around the lake, and when he took the plunge for about the twentieth time, I joined him for a half hour of splashing around. I think he’s forgiven me for leaving him home all morning while I shuffled and signed papers in Auch. Shaking himself dry all over my clothes was undoubtedly part of the reconciliation process.|