Posted by: kathandroger | May 21, 2011

Sarko is back!

It has been quite a week in French politics – the first couple are having a baby – it is official! Sarko, the most unpopular president in the history of the 5th Republic and facing almost certain defeat in next year’s polls has resorted to that old Blair trick of getting the wife in the family way in the run up to an election. But as it happens they needn’t have bothered as the election front-runner – a certain M. Strauss-Kahn, who this time last week was unknown to the world outside France – pressed the self destruct button and whether he is guilty or not his political career is over. On the question of guilt there isn’t a single person we know who doubts he did what he is alledged to have done. He has quite a bit of previous and seemingly everyone knew he was like that! So why didn’t anyone say? In France there is a distinct separation between private life and public life which is why all previous presidents were able to have a bit on the side and get away with it (apart from De Gaulle apparently). I suppose it is up to them and their wives – even John Major had a fling with Edwina after all – but when a potential president resorts to sexual violence surely it is in the public interest to know? Anyway, the upshot is that Sarko is right back in the race. There are 3 possible socialist party candidates, but none of which commands the respect DSK used to enjoy. Francois Hollande is just in the lead ahead of party leader Martine Aubry, with Segolene Royale trailing in third… and then there is Marine Le Pen hanging on  in there for the National Front. How things change!

Back home, it was 2 years yesterday that we arrived in France. Incredible how time flies! We arrived with our heads full of projects and lots of work ahead…we still have our heads full of projects and lots of work ahead! But much has been achieved – our barn conversions are well underway, our garden is in reasonable shape, Roger’s french is much improved and we have many friends from the different activities in which we are involved. Last year we reflected upon how the warmth of welcome we had received was the most positive aspect of our arrival in France – and we would both say that that continues to be our highlight.

On a more prosaic note – the broad bean harvest has begun. The locals are the most prodigious of gardeners and while we do OK, we are outshone on virtually all aspects of our potager – except our broad beans! We’ve got loads…here is the start of the harvest…

Finally, it is with deep sadness that I report the sad death this morning of Juliet, our brown chicken, after a long illness. She’d been on her last legs for several months but fought bravely until the end. RIP Juliet.

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