Monday, 4 June 2012

Snail farming etc.

After a week and a half in the south I am still pale and I hope interesting…
Domestic here is never dull, never know from one minute to the next what is going to happen except it will not be the first mentioned option, plan “A” never happens! Plan “B”s can be very interesting especially when they involve a wine tasting for the restaurant. One day recently there were two in one day, someone has to do it… At one things seemed familiar then it dawned on me that I had met the winemaker when he came to the restaurant one day to present his wines to a group who had come for a cooking lesson then were eating the results, we were asked to help, as I said before someone has to do it! At that meal one of the wines was so good we got a case of a dozen to take home the next day. I resisted this time because we shall be on the road for a week and it might get cooked. The second visit was to L’Abbey de Sainte Eugenie, I missed the last chance to go there a couple of years ago because someone had offered a flight in a small Cessna an I was volunteered. We flew over the house and did a tight circle so that we could look straight down through the side window and all that we could see is that they had all cleared off to look for wine! The husband still has some parcels of vines right on the Spanish border with vines his great grandfather planted which make my favourite wine, Banulys. It is left out in barrels in the sun to develop so we thought a half dozen would be ideal to take home, my neighbour Betty also loves it. We were told that it was not the same vintage which Julie bought before so we were encouraged to try some first, one sip and I doubled the order…
We seemed to keep going out for the evenings, a wildish bar / restaurant after the wine trip because it was the only place open that night then an isolated beach restaurant which had just been built for the season, we had only gone to se if it was open… it has to be removed each year. The next night a classy restaurant, at each place we kept bumping into many of the same locals and friend Valerie in particular as if one party was stalking the other… Such a relief to be having a simple omelette at home after a swim at the beach and this overdue post.
I have long thought that people should arrange to work on each other’s gardens, somehow it always seems so much more pleasurable, when here I just set to and work the garden and repair all the things which have been broken and abandoned. I find it fun and the place looks a lot better when I finish but it has it’s down side. Since I wear old ragged clothes for much of the work they do keep slipping with the pronouns! They seem to think I am two different people,one who wears flowing dresses and is quite girly who gets treated correctly and the scruffy one who does not!

When we arrived here they were all wrapped up in winter clothes though we thought it warm, it got warmer straight away and I was soon sleeping with only a corner of a sheet over my kidneys. For a few days the temperatures have dropped a little and in honour of the queen’s jubilee it rained here too, great for snail hunting and there were hands full for the taking so the snail farm is filling nicely. At home they are just a pest, here they are food...


  1. Wine is fattening as well as food you know - just a reminder not to enjoy yourself too much. At least the snails are low-cal (without the garlic butter).

  2. I was wondering why I couldn't lose weight Louise! Looks like another fine holiday for Caroline, and why not? I chuckled when I read about you taking half a dozen bottles of wine home with you because in the same sentence you spoke about barrels of it being left out in the sun to mature! I had visions of the car laden with six barrels of wine.

    Shirley Anne x

  3. Calories have been put into all the things we like to eat and drink...

    After a long day gardening, mostly in my niece's vegetable patch which first involved cutting wild bamboo from someone's vineyard, I thought we were going to buy canes not pinch them, we all sat down to some local produce with our BBQed duck breasts just as the light faded. Moments after we finished the sky started to light with flashes of a distant storm which we all sat and watched until it reached us with stair rods of rain. So much for spending yesterday installing an automatic watering system on the growing roof of the restaurant...

  4. I am soooooo jealous! Delightful pictures and a wonderful story to go with them. I can just taste that wine and visualize the vines.

    Thanks for sharing!

    Calie xxx


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