Monday 13 December 2010

RIP The Lovely Madame D.

My postings recently have been a bit glum, and now, to make things worse, my lovely neighbour, Madame D, has died. I'm expecting her funeral on tuesday to be a huge affair.
The above shows Madame D (in glasses), Jean-Claude (who recently delivered my wood), Josette (Madame D's daughter), and Alexandra. Alexandra is Josette and Jean-Claude's daughter; Madame D's grand-daughter. Is that clear? The photo was taken 14 years ago.

When we first arrived in France in September 1972, Madame D took us in hand. She showed Lady M how to make Ham, Sausage, Paté etc, how to kill and prepare chickens, and how to do just about everything that any local girl would have mastered by the age of 12.

Madame D was a treasure; it was pure fortune that I bought the adjacent farmhouse, and we became neighbours. She was the archetypal French farmer's wife; a true 'paysanne'. What she didn't know about growing, preserving, and cooking, wasn't worth knowing. She always had a smile on her face, and nothing was ever too much for her. Even up to quite recently I used to phone her about the finer details of certain local recipes (which she never knew, as she did everything by sight and memory).

The D family, and that of my other neighbour José, have, over the years, become the closest thing we have to 'family' in France. Had they not not been there, we might well have returned to the UK.

So, farewell Madame D (may I at last call you Yvonne?). We were privileged to have known you for nearly 40 years; we loved you dearly, and shall genuinely miss you.

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  1. That part of France certainly won't be the same without her. I have many strong memories of her I will never forget. She was always smiling and friendly. Many many people will miss her too.

  2. Wills. When I go to the funeral tomorrow, I shall mention that you have sent your condolences. I know that Josette will be very touched.

  3. Cro - what sad news at Christmas for you all! My condolences to the family and also to you and Lady M as well. She shared a big part in both your lives. May she rest in peace.

  4. Life is certainly not treating you kindly at the moment Cro. She sounds like she was a jewel and to have been so respected may I presume had a life well lived?

  5. Very sad to hear. Please pass on my thoughts to Claude and his family.

  6. Just got back from the funeral. Very sad.

  7. Fly high, Madame D.

    My thoughts are with you today, Cro. Peace, my friend.

  8. Hello Cro.I am just catching up on Blogs and had missed this one.I am so sorry for your loss,some people come into our lives and leave and we never know they were even there ,others leave a great gaping space and I think perhaps this lovely lady will be the latter.Blessings to you and your neighbours family at this sad time.Carole


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