Posted by: kathandroger | March 31, 2019

Two stills and one face plant!

What an interesting week. Not for the best reasons maybe but interesting none the less.

We have had some lovely mornings; still and cool, but with the sun soon heating the ploughed fields causing rolling mists which my little camera does not really do justice to.

IMG_0454But the early mists have been followed by glorious days of full sunshine, and it was on one such day that I had the good fortune to be able to witness another still….IMG_0458This wonderful bit of kit was hidden in an old corrugated hut on the outskirts of a local village. I had passed it many times without knowing what was inside the ramshackle building, and was pleased when a French friend asked me to help him transport his 3 year old collection of rotting pears to be wondrously transformed into “eau de vie”. The large blue plastic barrel really did need two of us to get it onto the trailer, and it was with some trepidation that I drove slowly to the “distillery”. There were a few locals around, smoking and sampling and grunting and chattering on as the French love to do. The huge machine was charged with wood fuel and burning beautifully, gently discharging the precious liquid into dubiously clean containers.IMG_0464

Apparently “Pear William” is the best variety to use, and a few days later I was honored to be given a bottle by my friend for services rendered. And yes it does taste of pear, and yes it is very strong! I have to say I am wary of home brewed spirits after a pal became temporarily blind having tried some in rural Mexico, but first sampling has not caused any problems so far! I am not sure about the legality of all this, but was reassured that all taxes will be paid,……. and that a herd of flying pigs will soon be doing acrobatics over the village.


The weather has been wonderful for cycling. Our club ride was on Wednesday, but because it takes about 4 hours, and I was a bit busy, I decided to do a shorter ride alone. Happily descending into a little farm locally, I remember feeling what a lovely time I was having. Then it all turned upside down, literally. The farmers dog had decided to attack my front wheel, and the next thing  I knew was waking up in the farmhouse surrounded by the Ambulance crew! I remember them cutting off my expensive cycling jacket, and whingeing about my right shoulder, but then it was into the blood wagon and off to our local Casualty Unit. Very efficient these French; soon xrays and body scans had been done, lots of infusions had been given (but no Pear William), and it was into the observation ward for the night. Had a lovely time chatting to the staff, who all wanted to practice their English, and then was let free next morning. I can’t pretend it has been continual fun since then, but a broken arm and grazed face could have been much worse without the helmet.IMG_0479And the  dog was unharmed, my bike only a bit bent, and the insurance cover will ease things a bit, so it could have been much worse. As a friend said, I was lucky!!


  1. Roger! Bloody hell!! Let me know if we can offer any practical assistance. Do you want me to come over and deliver meals on wheels? Need anything cleaned, tidied, rounded up?

    • Thank you! Managing well with help from some lovely friends.Everything will heal eventually!

  2. So sorry to hear this. Hope that things heal quickly and that there are no lasting effects.
    What a painful shock it must have been. Courage..,

  3. Thanks Gaynor,but must admit it has slowed me down a bit!

  4. As you are undoubtedly aware, Susan, in one of her recent posts, mentioned that you had written a book about your experiences as an English. country doctor. Based on how much I enjoy reading your blog about your French experiences, I immediately ordered a copy from Amazon. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it…you certainly had an interesting thirty years!
    Hope you’re recovering quickly. Always has to be the right arm, doesn’t it?
    Or perhaps you are left-handed.

  5. Thank you so much Sheila…my first review! Sorry the book is not laid out correctly, it will be changed soon, and yes i am right handed!

  6. Ouch, poor you!
    Hope you are healing well, doctor!

  7. That still, is it the one over by Chambon??
    And yes, it is strong stuff… our neighbour gave us a bottle of his Mirabelle eau-de-vie… a litre of it… it needs diluting 10:1 to taste the mirabelles… so we’ve got ten litres worth of lethal cordial!!

    • Is that what keeps you both in such a well preserved condition?

  8. Oh no, what a terrible thing to happen, and at the wrong time of year too. Not that there’s ever a good time but just now when there’s so much to do is not fun. All those weeks in plaster – not to mention the weeks of physio and reduced function afterwards. I hope it all goes well and you are soon back to normal.
    Loose dogs are a menace. A friend once did a headplant over the handlebars of his motorcycle on the way to work when a dog ran out at him and he did an excellent emergency stop. The owner just collected the dog and disappeared. He had a trashed motorcycle and two broken wrists. The UK helmet law probably saved his life. I vowed that the dog would have to die if that ever happened to me.

  9. One thing our dog has been taught is that bikes are not for chasing!

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