Friday, December 21, 2012
One of those days.
Down to the greengrocers to collect the large Christmas tree for the upstairs hallway. Selected , paid for and set aside last Saturday. '' It'll be here for you Monsieur Ongoose whenever you want to collect it ". When I get there the greengrocer isn't there but his wife is. ' We don't have any trees left. I sold the last one yesterday ' . She calls her husband . ' Oops ! It was your tree I sold '. That omnipresent French phrase '' Je suis desolee " .
Outside the supermarket a spindly six foot affair. The last unsold Christmas tree in France. Somewhere, somehow it seems to have lost most of the branches on one side. ' The font ' looks at it for a moment. " Guess you won't be needing the step ladders ".
On the village green high drama. The clock in the church tower hasn't worked since a dead pigeon fell off the belfry into the mechanism and became wedged in the cogs. Two years of glorious silence without its dunk dunk dunk every hour ; twice. Lunchtime . A large truck arrives with a crane on it. This is soon followed by a white van with three men in grey overalls. They spend the afternoon trying to prise the clock from the wall. They fail. The mayor waves his hands. Madame mayor shouts encouragement. At five on the dot the men, the blue truck with the crane and the white van all go.