Friday, 28 August 2015

New car

We are going to buy a new car. This is for three reasons:

1. It is safer to have a left hand drive car in France.
2. We might need something with a bit more room to transport Rose's ceramic pieces.
3. I crashed our current car into a ditch and wrote it off.

Something I learned from this is that once you get past superficial cultural differences human nature shines through no matter where you are in the world. By this I mean that the French mechanic who towed the car home was equally as surly as any English mechanic. He wasn't the least bit impressed that I'd managed to launch our car from a ditch into a roadside thicket.

I am taking the crash as a sign that I am integrating well as I am clearly becoming as dangerous on the roads as the French. Now we have to buy a new car. Rose is pulling for something sensible whereas I would like something that has tank tracks instead of wheels.

I've been searching the second hand car dealers of the local area. Today I found one selling a Porsche 944 made in 1980 for 1000 euros. This is remarkable because if you search online you won't find a 944 for under 3000 euros and also because if you check online you'll find that Porsche didn't start making this car till 1982.

Can anyone reccomend a sat nav with an 'Avoid ditches' option?

Sunday, 16 August 2015

Mysterious poo

Every day something poos just outside our front door. Initially I believed it to be an animal, but now I think it could simply be a human with minature buttocks. I am going to ask Rose to sculpt a tiny loo out of clay that I will then leave at the site of the last evacuation.

I thought that perhaps whatever was doing this had some sort of grievance with us. They seemed to be protest poos, placed in areas designed to cause maximum chaos. But now I wonder if the reason they always poo outside our front door is because from that position there's a wonderful view over a valley. I certainly feel very calm when I see it. It's puts one in an ideal frame of mind for a poo.

Now I am of the opinion that one can't blame whatever is pooing there. Indeed, I am surprised we only get one poo a day. If word gets out we could have people coming from miles around.

These are the problems people never tell you about when you move somewhere with a nice view, and that needs to be addressed. 

Saturday, 15 August 2015

Bread, breast implants and Seahorse viagra

If I was on masterchef my speciality dish would be french bread from our local village baker with some butter on it. I would call my dish Pain et Beurre Thermidor. If I didn't win with this dish I would sleep with John Torode as that seems to be the way to victory – I'm looking at you, Lisa Faulkner. Justice for Dick Strawbridge. We haven't forgotten.

The French have their own version of masterchef. They have one contestant on it called Betty who refuses to cook anything and stands in the corner crying. For several weeks everyone was too scared to tell her she was out of the competition so she carried on turning up.

I could live on french bread and butter. I know this because I am living on french bread and butter. But where are you getting the nutrients from? I hear you ask. Simple - Nutregena shampoo.

When you go to the bakery in France everyone says hello to you when you walk in - the customers and the bakers. And when someone else comes in you all have to say hello to them. The first time I walked unsuspecting into a full french bakery the chorus of bonjours was so loud I thought Rose had arranged a surprise party for me. I went round hugging elderly french women and pawing great lumps out of the cakes in the display cabinets with my hands. Not allowed back there.

It makes perfect sense to say hello  - why wouldn't you say hello to people? Unless they are Londoners of course. One word to a Londoner in public and the next thing you know you're phone's been stolen, your online identity's been cloned and everyone you know has received an email from your account trying to sell them breast implants and natural viagra pills made from seahorse penis. What do you mean I sent that email before my phone was stolen?

On a separate note please send me some seahorses as I like them as pets and absolutely won't powder their bits to make sex pills.

Do seahorses have bits? Genuinely can't be bothered to google it.

You had me at "4 inch beetle with deadly head-claws."

Tuesday, 11 August 2015


We had a friend to stay for a few days. When she arrived she asked if we had seen any hornets. I said 'no' and opened the door to the garden. Immediately there was a low humming sound like the Luftwaffe following the Thames into London and something the size of a pterodactyl flew over us, temporarily plunging the world into darkness as it passed across the sun before crashing into a wall, splintering stone and concrete, and then flying into the house. I'm not shitting you, this thing was monstrous. It made the windows rattle. It was like a mega wasp. I don't know why they don't just call them mega wasps.

I did what any warrior would do and ran out into the garden, locking the door behind me. I needed some me time. I needed to work out if it was possible to get a hornet into a headlock.

A few hours later I had worked out my strategy to defeat it (Judo chop to the neck or ribs) so I went back inside but I couldn't find it. Weird thing is as far as I know the hornet never flew out. The bathroom door is locked and a copy of Hello magazine is missing so I think it's still on the loo.


"You might want to leave it 5 minutes"

Sunday, 9 August 2015

French markets

Every Saturday in our nearest town (St Pourcain sur Sioule in case you're wondering) they have a market in the large town square. Everybody goes to it. It's a central part of life in France part grocery shopping, part biggest social event of the week. The cafes are packed and the town is revitalised for another week. They sell fresh fruit and veg, fish, meat and local delicacies as well as clothing and household goods. Better than all these things, they sell massive, massive watches.

10 euros of solid gold.

My new watch has three buttons on it. 2 of them don't do anything. At least I think they don't. I worry that every time I press them some dude in Tokyo wonders why his bathroom light switches off.

The watch is very heavy, most likely because it's made of lead and asbestos. People will respect me now.

Saturday, 8 August 2015




"Hi, I'm looking for my friend Colin, he went missing a few hours ago near.... Colin? NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!"

Wednesday, 5 August 2015

Camel balls

Got this from our local shop. In a meeting, in an office somewhere, full of people in suits, somebody ok'd this. That fills me with joy. Liquid camel ball joy.

"At least it doesn't actually taste of camel b... Oh no. Oh dear god no. I can taste the sweat."

Saturday, 1 August 2015


We've bought our first box of wine! 5 litres in one go, all dispensed via a very efficient plastic tap. It's such good value that it is cheaper than buying water, but it does make the toothpaste taste funny.

The Auvergne region isn't famous for its wines but there is a town called St Pourcain which produces very decent wines which are excellent value. They have a large wine shop called 'La union des vignerons'. What I like most about the shop is instead of having baskets for you to put your wine into they have the kind of large, flat bed trolleys that you might find in a Big Yellow storage facility. I like their optimism.