‘Everything’s 2 Euros, except the things what aint’

When the landlady of the local bar asked if I could help out at the bar tonight, clearing a few tables, washing a few glasses etc, I managed to get a babysitter for the evening (merci Angé x) and off I toddled to the Fete de la Soupe. What I didn’t expect ,but probably should have, was for her to be in a flat panic as she was due to play for some dances in 5 minutes and the landlord had decided that now was a great time to go and feed his horse. So I was promoted from bottle washer to head barmaid in the space of about 30 seconds. Which would not have been so bad apart from the fact that the last time I worked behind a bar was …actually never. The briefest of run-throughs on the till and a wave at the price list behind the bar and she was off. Buisness was fairly slow to begin with and thank the good Lord above that no body ordered coffee as the machine has enough buttons to rival a workstation at NASA.

After about 20 minutes the landlord strolled back in and instead of being relieved of my barkeep duties, he decided that I was doing rather well so I may as well just carry on. He gave me a proper detailed breakdown of the pricing structure, ‘Everything’s 2 Euros, except the things what aint’, and wandered off to talk to a man about a stuffed boar’s head.

I was going great guns and had even mastered the pulling of the kronenburg, which is apparently something that the landlord has yet to get fully to grips with, I had managed to serve even the most rural of French accented patrons with ony a couple of ‘repetez vous’ when I was well and truly stumped by a request for a ‘diabalo fraise’. It only took a few moments and a couple of questions to get the correct ingredients, and I was off and running again.

After a couple of hours it began to get really busy and I was staring longingly at the hot steaming bowls of soup being brought into the bar by the patrons of the fete. And not just because of the delicious smelling soup, but because of the bowls themselves. As you entered the fete, you paid 5 Euros and picked youself a unique and very beautiful hand made bowl, made by one of the local artisans, and then got a large chunk of organic bread from quite possibly the best baker in the world, (and for those of you who have been here of course you already know I mean Mme Sophie), and went around and sampled the various soups that were being made on the wood fire stoves out in the square. If you felt the need you could buy more bread, if you felt the inclination you could paint and fire your own bowl and if you felt the urge you could dance all night to the band that was playing.

I gathered most of this information from my one foray out of the bar to perform my original purpose for the evening and collect some glasses. And i didn’t get the chance to get either soup, bread or bowl. Quel domage.

My ‘shift’ was due to finish at 10pm, and I was astonished when I looked at the clock and found that it was rapidly approaching home time, but it was probably just about the perfect time for me to go as, although I had coped with the language and accents well tonight, add a few pints of beer and rather a lot of vin chaud ,and the orders were becoming rather more difficult to decipher.

It felt good to be working again, it felt good to be socialising, it felt great to be out in the community and be greeted by so many friends, most of whom were just as surprised to see me behind the bar as I was to be there. But, after only 5 hours, I have to admit that I am shattered, my feet are killing me, and I could do with a pint myself.

And in case you were wondering, it’s strawberry cordial and lemonade.

A bientôt.


Pumpkin soup anyone?

Today I have been helping out a friend who runs the local bar. We are making preparations for the ‘Premier Fete de la Soupe’ that is taking place tommorrow.  And before you ask I have no Idea what a ‘Fete de la soupe’ entails, other than eating soup of course, but there will be a full report on that tomorrow night.

While we were sewing and chatting she asked if I would like a pumpkin. I replied in the affirmative, I like pumpkins. ” It’s quite big” says she,  “that’s OK, I like pumpkins” says I “I’ll pick it up after school”.  I should have been a little more circumspect when she said she might need a bit of help getting it into my car, but the comment passed me by.

I  wandered over to the school to assist with the afternoons activities. The classroom smelt wonderful as the kids had spent the morning making large pots of soup to contribute to the festivities. This afternoon we were making small people out of various vegetables , I’m not entirely sure what the point was, but everyone seemed to enjoy it anyway, and what wasn’t used for making people seemed to find it’s way into the stomachs of several small people, well thats  3 0f the 5 a-day accounted for  already.

So back to pick up my pumpkin, and it turns out that she wasn’t kidding, although ‘quite big’ doesn’t really cover it. What she had failed to tell me was that this particular pumpkin was the eventual winner of the ‘who can grow the biggest pumpkin’ competition held at the bar at the back end of last year, and I am now the proud owner of 17kg worth of prizewinning pumpkin.  Oh My.

A bientot.

Something new!

Welcome to my new Blog.  I have decided to try blogging in this format as I am finding it too cumbersome to blog on the main site, but don’t worry it’s still there in all it’s glory and I will update it periodically and link it here, along with news of my other ventures.

I’m hoping this way will encourage me to write more often. We shall see.

This should also make it much easier for you to comment on my posts,  be gentle with me, and see what other people have said as well.

Time to post and see how it looks.

A bientot.