So the husband hears the sound of shotguns nearby. This is hunting season. Now before you all go crazy and think that’s absolutely terrible call the SPCA, I must just tell you that it’s something you kind of grow to accept – pretty quickly. Is it part of the circle of life in France and it really isn’t a sport …honest to goodness… definitely not a sport. Compared to South Africa..there is not a HUGE selection of meat here and the portions that are packed in the meat section…are packed for two in proportion to what you should eat together with veggies etc. Over eating on meat is not an option and just like nearly every home owner has a veggie patch, a good proportion of French country folk “grow” their own meat. So wild pigeon and “lapin” (rabbit) are just something you eat with the veggies you’ve grown in the garden.
ANYWAY…coming back to my original sentence, the husband heard shooting nearby and decided to investigate seeing it seemed VERY nearby and the owners of the land don’t particularly want shooting in their forest or on their land..so…being big and brave (and speaking way less french than I do) he heads over in Anabel the jeep t investigate. Yup, no worries, they’re on the other side in someone else’s land so cool beans, let’s do a u-turn and come home. Ha! The revenge of the mud! The u-turn turned out to be a “wheel whizzing helplessly while Anabel has a mud spa of sorts” escapade. So the husband comes home looking a little sheepish and carrying planks from the barn and says to me “If you feel up to it..can you help me get Anabel out of the mud?”. The reason he put it like that is because there I was, having half cooked dinner and feeling like yesterdays breakfast. I had come down with tonsillitis…and I had soldiered on through a week hoping it would just go away before I finally braved a chemist with my phrase book and my best french only to discover she spoke really good french and I felt like a complete idiot…an idiot with tonsillitis. Who on earth get this at this age?!
So I said yes I feel up to it and put on my wellies to trudge in the dusk, in mud and puddles to go to Anabel’s aid. The planks didn’t work so I figured the best thing to do while the husband put his foot on the accelerator was to push. You ever tried pushing a jeep? You ever tried pushing a jeep stuck in the mud? It’s like pushing an elephant that WANTS to be in the mud. It sits there with that placid look on it;s face and when you push…all you do is jolt the metal body … and you think Yay I’m Superman until it dawns on you that pushing just the body is pointless..it doesn’t even come close to moving the wheels and helping the situation and so.. with breath held, you suggest tomorrow is another day..or the farmer with the six Alsatians who we haven’t met yet but who we spy on through the kitchen window, just might help. We settle on the farmer and in the pitch black, we squelch once again through the mud road and walk to the farm next door. He speaks english as well as I speak french…no, I lie…as well as the husband speaks french. But he comes to our aid with his trusty tractor, bright headlights and Voila! Anabel is out in five minutes. In the meantime, me and my tonsils have dragged ourselves back to the stove and are just thinking that a whiskey wouldn’t be amiss..when in he walks having invited the farmer..who I have no idea what his name is …all I can remember is that the male dog is called Ricky..for a whiskey or a glass of wine.
Yay! I sat on the floor in front of the fire, the driver of Anabel had Babel-translation-from-French-into-english-and-back-again-on-my-PC on his lap and believe it or not..we managed to have a pretty good conversation for about an hour and a half. …ok the whiskey helped as well….and as it turns out, we discovered that where Anabel had “gone down” was an old compost heap so there was no solid ground there anyway… Ultimately, the whole episode was extremely understandable. And that’s the story the husband is sticking to.
a la prochaine from my tonsils and me