Thursday 3 March 2011

Permis de Chasse.

I've just been looking through a large metal deed box, and I came across this; my old gun licence. It's dated 26. 10. 73.

I can hardly believe that the French authorities once let me wander afoot with a shotgun over my arm. If that scruffy apeth (above) had come into MY office asking for a shotgun licence, I'd have told him to get lost.

Most of France is very heavily wooded; the South West particularly so. Wild Boar and Roe Deer abound, but for the dedicated 'chasseur' there isn't much else. In the winter there are flocks of passing Palombe (wood pigeon), but that's about it. My hunting days here, surprisingly, produced almost next to nothing for the pot.

About 40 years ago, when I still did a bit of shooting in the UK, an afternoon would bag pheasants, pigeons, and rabbits, by the truck load. But here, in an area that still looks so ideal for wildlife, there is little to be had, outside of an organised, dog-led, weekend sweep.

Many years ago I loaned my shotgun to a Dutch chef, he then died and the gun disappeared; I haven't shot since. Frankly I'm not fussed; nowadays I'd rather look at it that shoot it!

The amazing thing is that (through all those intervening years) I haven't changed one bit!

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  1. Ha, love that photo! Our neighbour, Philippe, often sets off into the woods with his hunting gun but invariably returns home with an empty bag. Sometimes we spot him stalking a rabbit and I’m always so relieved that he always misses and bunny bounces off home.

  2. If only there was a rabbit to stalk. We do see the occasional hare, but I leave them alone.

  3. You should come to my workshop - every possible form of wildlife is there, including about a million bunnies. I let them alone, as it's a sort of haven for them, but I've long-since given up the idea of growing vegetables. If I were to lend a gun to someone and never get it back, the police would arrest me and lock me up. Good old French.

  4. Just a suggestion, but maybe you should report to the police that your gun is not in the hands of its owner? If that gun falls into criminal hands and a murder is committed you are the first person the police will visit. Of course, I'm from Canada and we're a bit squirrelly about gun licenses here.

  5. MBJ. This all happened about thirty years ago.. In those days you just went into a gun shop and paid money.

  6. Love that 70s hair, Cro. (I'm a dead-eye shot, but I keep it a bit dark.)

  7. are there serial killers in France?

  8. I have some wonderful wildlife in my yard and it thrills me to pieces when I see them outside. Then I plant my garden and I am torn, flowers and veggies or the sight of beautiful deer, rabbits and other cute but ravenous creatures, great and small.


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