Thursday, January 03, 2013


pink contrails (1)My day began with the sight of new sunrise-lit contrails slicing up the eastern sky. A few hours later Munson and I were driving in that direction to a location south of Toulouse where my Australian friend Claire and her family were staying for a few days. Their hosts Thierry & VB have some German Shepherd dogs to be introduced to Munson. I’ve made a lemon & thyme cake to bring – it looks a bit strange, like a house-brick with a cavity in the top, as I put in too much baking powder, it rose too far and then collapsed when I removed it from the oven to drizzle it with lemon syrup. I’m expecting that it will still taste fine.

I was very pleased that the new dual carriageway road from Auch to Gimont is now complete, and so we shaved some time off the usual trek.  We then turned south through Samatan and the southeast corner of the Gers that I haven’t visited since moving to the farm. It was here that I saw a very long unbroken tubular pillar of cloud that I’ve seen on other eastbound journeys. The last one sat very close to the ground from Vic Fezensac to Toulouse. I wonder if they’re a regular feature of this region where air moves between the Atlantic and Mediterranean north of the Pyrenées.
Django, Munson & Coco (1)  Munson & Django
At our destination everyone was out for the afternoon except for Claire’s husband John, so I took some time to do a staged introduction to the two dogs Django and Coco.  Beginning with Django the large male I followed a similar protocol as I had with King in Denmark last year. The two boys were given space and a chance to sniff each other before allowing both off leash. There was a bit of piss and vinegar at first but Django quickly got over and the two became quite solicitous towards each other. Coco the female was a bit more difficult but as long as Munson didn’t interfere with her toys she was OK. I took it as a good sign that all three dogs would come to me for reassurance and listened. Munson is bigger than the two of them put together but just wants to play.
Later in the afternoon when everyone was home, I had a delightful half hour in the spa, glass of champagne at my side while I looked out towards the Pyrenées as the sun set. Thierry le chef spoilt us all with a multi-course dinner while Claire kept the champagne flowing. Pop!

champers in spa, sunset over Pyrenées

dinner time

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