Thursday, 5 March 2015

Level Cheese Playing Field?

If you live in any European country other than France, you will have noticed that your local supermarket's cheese department offers a huge selection of Gallic cheeses. Everything from Camembert to Chevre, and Roquefort to Reblochon.

But when I visit my own French supermarket (here in France) I find JUST ONE UK CHEESE on offer. A reasonably pleasant Scottish 'Seriously Strong' Cheddar.

Seeing as France produces about 365 different cheeses and the UK over 700, it does seem as if that wonderful egalitarian European playing field has been tilted légèrement towards the south.

Can anyone give a logical explanation? 

p.s. re other national cheeses. Italy is represented by Parmesan (blocks and grated), Holland is represented by Edam and Gouda, and Switzerland by something rubbery with holes in it. Otherwise; nothing 'foreign' gets a look-in.

Wednesday, 4 March 2015

CAGE. The Enemy Within?

                                Résultat de recherche d'images pour "Cage directors"

Just in case you are unaware, 'CAGE' is an English 'Human Rights Group' who support the Taliban, al Qaeda, and the charming Jihadi John (above right). Their director, Asim Qureshi (above left), recently described the latter as 'an extremely gentle, and beautiful young man'. No doubt he really meant 'an extremely gentle and beautiful young man who beheads people in front of a movie camera'.

It is difficult in a liberal democratic society such as the UK's, to stop organisations such as 'CAGE' being established. What is NOT so difficult, however, is to stop them being funded by woolly thinking, naive left wing liberals.

It has recently been divulged that two well known British charities have been handing-out dosh to 'CAGE' like there's no tomorrow.

It is unimaginable to most right-thinking people that The Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust, and The Roddick Foundation, should between them have funded these idiots to the tune of about £300,000.

Daftness comes in all shapes, colours, and sizes, and the UK has more than its fair share of loony-left Human Rights protagonists, but what the hell would both Joseph Rowntree and (maybe less so) Anita Roddick have thought of their hard earned cash being handed over to well known enemies of the state.

I would have thought that sponsoring an organisation that has known links to terrorist groups would be an offence in the UK; so, will these half-baked charities end up in front of the beak? I very much doubt it; unless of course Cheerie Blair is making a fortune by defending them!

Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Collectors edition wheelbarrow.

It may seem as if I'm always buying wheelbarrows, but I just couldn't resist this particular beauty.

It's an extremely rare 'collectors limited edition' 2015 special; very few of which have been made available to the public.

So what, I hear you asking, is so special about it?

Well, IT CAME READY BLOODY ASSEMBLED; that's what.... Bloody miracle; I almost bought four!

Monday, 2 March 2015

Serious Signs of Spring.

Spring is showing its good intentions. These mini blue Irises have just popped up.

As have most of the Daffs.

But the most encouraging sign that Spring is in the air are the Toads on the pool cover. They arrive every year and, if allowed, produce long lines of black spotted Toad Spawn. I have already removed them, plus another single male, to a nearby pond.

Before long there'll be Pussy Willow, birds nests, purple sprouting Broccoli, and Cuckoos. I can feel the blood rising, and I like it..

Sunday, 1 March 2015

Our latest LAW.

Annoying French laws come and go. I often think they reflect what company the current President has shares in.

In recent times we've had several swimming pool laws (fences and/or alarms), we've also been made to have breathalyser kits and high-viz jackets in our cars, and now we are instructed to have smoke alarms in the house.

How considerate they are to think of our safety.

As from the 8th of March we are obliged to have at least one smoke alarm in the house.

I'm not against such things, in fact I've installed two. But we have a slight problem; seeing as both of our heating appliances are wood fired (Godin stove in sitting room, and poor-man's Aga in the kitchen), when they are opened to re-fuel quite a lot of smoke can occasionally spill forth. 

I've not yet tested the alarms to see if they will scream at me every time I bung a log on the fire, but if the alarms are as sensitive as they suggest, then I'm expecting that they will. 

With our pool and the car, no-one has yet been to inspect that we are applying by the law, and I imagine that it may be the same with the smoke alarms. But the local fire brigade chief does call every winter to sell us his calendar, so maybe this winter he'll also ask to see the alarms.

The info' in the top picture in on the back of this year's Sapeurs Pompiers calendar.

Saturday, 28 February 2015

Favourite sweets.

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I don't eat sweets, but I used to.

Amongst my top favourites as a child were these wonderful Sherbet Fountains.
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Sherbet filled Flying Saucers.
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Anything made from Licorice.
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Maynards Wine Gums (I do still occasionally have some of these).
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And those very non-PC wrapped Black Jacks (I didn't dare show the original wrappers).

Even thinking about them.... and I'm back to 8 years old again.

Friday, 27 February 2015


My personal wardrobe is divided into 3 categories.

1. Ratting clothes: old gardening/building togs, mostly fit for the dustbin.

2. Smart-ish clothes: shopping, weddings, and funerals. Almost socially acceptable.

3. Buck House Specials: ermine, medals, dress sword, etc. (Maybe No 3 just lives in my imagination).

This morning I decided that my current pair of ratting trousers (above) should finally be laid to rest. There is almost as much hole as material, and they are beginning to look a tad scruffy.

Whilst dressing, I declared to Lady Magnon that this would be their final outing, after which they will go to the bonfire. (Am I being a bit hasty here?)

"No, no" she cried "Make them into dusters".

I capitulated. My ratting trousers will now live on to be of further use...... They will be responsible for buffing the silver, dusting the Renoirs, and shining the Chippendale. Wonderful; my £4 spent in 1990 was well invested, albeit a bit rash.

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