Tuesday, 5 November 2019

Mimi.


                           Résultat de recherche d'images pour "the alcazar paris"

Mimi was (and probably still is) a right character!

Before finding himself back in his native Sud Ouest village, Mimi had worked in Paris at the infamous Alcazar Restaurant and Cabaret (above), where I believe he'd acted as both a server and drag act.

Mimi was as camp as a row of pink winceyette tents. He was tall, quite masculine looking, but with the mannerisms of Frankie Howerd.

Our first meeting was at a pop-up restaurant he started in an old barn, not too far from us. The food was average, he boasted of a resident poet in his kitchen, and egg throwing was a nightly sport. It was slightly unusual to say the least, and we returned quite often. He had a wonderful way of putting all the children at their own table and sitting down with them; cutting-up their meat, etc. Have you ever been to a restaurant like that? I think the Mayor of the village eventually kicked him out.

His second restaurant was quite different; we only went twice (twice was enough). We were served stinking Paté, Ecrevisses that were devoid of any flesh, and other courses that were equally disastrous. He also had some sort of ramshackle club in the cellar where, after we'd finished eating, he would perform outrageous drag acts; often falling over after too much wine. It was a total disaster, but he always had a group of followers; mostly unsavoury looking.

Poor Mimi, someone later burned his house down, and I think he moved away. I rather liked him, he was always brave and daring; and he considered that nothing was beyond his abilities (even if it was).

We may not have eaten terribly well Chez Mimi, but there was never a dull moment; and somehow that was far more important.


14 comments:

  1. It takes all sorts and that’s what makes the world go round. I wonder what became of him ? XXXX

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    1. I haven't seen him for years. I expect he's still around somewhere. Nice guy.

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  2. Sounds like an interesting character. Love that poster.

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    1. His first restaurant was in Pomarede, and his second on the roundabout in Frayssinet. Both now long gone.

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  3. True 'characters' are hard to come by these days. We are, in theory, far more tolerant now but being a 'character' usually doesn't have a medical name to give it credibility so people can't cope with it.

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    1. He was a 'fish out of water' having come from Gay Paree to the backwoods of S W France. Most saw him as very 'exotic'.

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  4. Life - and food - requires spice! Too much spice is sometimes too much; still, life requires spice!

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  5. After reading about your village Cro the villages round here always sound rather dull.

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    1. I'm not sure about that; it's pretty dull here most of the time; but that's how I like it.

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  6. Such amusing people are ok in small doses but you don't want to get too close.

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    1. We were never 'close' to him, ours was always a restauranteur/client relationship; but I did worry about some of his 'hangers-on'.

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