Wednesday, 29 April 2009

I wanted to be me ( not Me-ed)

I have been mee me meed. Thanks to Fennie ( who is , I fear, alas still avenging the departure of Loic the one legged gardener prone to catatonic episodes from this world, and is using meedom as a form of sadistic punishment. It is my fault he has gone, I stopped writing him. Well then here we go if I must pay for my sins, even if they are ones of omission I had better get down on my knees and start otherwise we shall still be here next christmas.

What are your current obsessions?

What ever makes you think I may have an obsession? Are you perchance obsessive yourself? You can get help I understand these days you know, its just a case of knowing where to look, now there you go you can obsessive over where to find help for obsessions that will keep you quiet for a while, there must be a blog in that someone surely?! An obsessive to me is someone who is constantly compelled to fluff cushions as soon as someone gets up, or has to have all the jars in the cupboard facing the same way, or put the corners of the newspapers straight. I once knew a woman who was totally obsessed with Tupperware. She kept everything in her kitchen in it, all colour coded to some bizarre system, very odd. It was like some manic form of lucky dip if you tried to find tea bags and didn’t know her system you ended up with gravy granules. No, I do not have obsessions.

I do have interests though, and that is a very different matter all together. I have several life long interests but I do not think they are all controlling, well not quite yet anyway. For instance I find old kitchen utensils hard to resist and am, at present, trying to reason with myself against the purchase of a sky blue vintage Spong runner bean slicer I have seen recently on ebay, something that is as my aunt would have said "a long felt want”. I also am a terror with books, our house has more books than the local library, when visitors come for the first time they tend to be rather overcome by the number, “ have you read them all?” they ask, a a strange question, of course I have, people don’t buy books for decoration surely? I am particularly prone to cookery books; they are a weakness of mine. I used to ferret about in charity shops and car boot sales in the UK and seek them out but today rely upon When I start cataloguing them by Dewey system or colour of spine then it will have become an obsession, now they just lurk all over the place like loitering literary refugees, a fact that implies that I am not truly obsessive at all.

Which item from your wardrobe do you wear most often?

Wardrobe? What wardrobe, one of the joys of living as a foreigner is that I am not confined by the social mores of dress so living in deep rural tranquillity I live in Jeans or trousers, I am not a skirt or dress person I hate shoes of all sorts but luckily since most of our friends are farmers wellingtons work very well. I have however found one is not expected to wear wellingtons to funerals which leave me somewhat scuppered on such occasions.

First spring thing?

Youngest has a rather fine collection of springs of various sizes including some old ones he dug out of the garden but I suspect you are talking printemps not bong bong so let us trill over the joys of nature in all her abundance. The sudden acid green awaking of the countryside, cherry blossom in the hedgerows and the joy of mornings lightening and evenings lengthening. Apple trees heavy with pink flower and the cuckoo in the woods.

What's for dinner?

Now lets see how pretentious can one be and get away with this sort of question I wonder?
We tend to eat lunch rather than dinner during the week so supper tonight will be Home made country Terrine with home pain complet made with flour from a local mill. I have recently gone back to bread making, tempted by the wide range of different flours one can get here and have been making pate since I first learned to cook. I used to make it in the UK because you could never get a decent pate de campagne only smooth liver pate which I don’t like but I make them here because it’s so therapeutic and simple.

Where are you planning to travel to next?

Well each day come rain or shine ( or both) I venture out on short forays to the far flung regions of my empire ( ie doing the school run or fetching and carrying offspring to various activities, or popping over to the farm to collect fresh milk and yoghurt) The next notable jot of travelling is I think going to be a jaunt down south to the camargue in southern France ( this summer en Famille. Please hear and take note that I am being very brave and noble about our abandoned plans to visit Italy again this year. I will not mention it again.

What on earth possesses you to blog and read blogs?

Ha, I do hope that gets you thinking! This is my question, the one that I have popped in to replace another one far, far to dull to write about ( see me me me rules at the bottom..) I used to dutifully blog everyday the tales of Un Peu Loufoque and Madame Grognonne Chronicles but have I think firmly put them to bed now. They may of course be somewhere else fighting their way through life’s bizarre and taxing events but at least they are, for now at least, not waking me at 4 in the morning demanding to be heard. Recently I have hardly blogged at all, I am busy writing other things and working on my ceramics and doing all the wife and motherly things that make up my day (and not brooding about not going to Italy, did I mention that before?) Having broken the habit, I can now sit back, breathe and ponder what it is about blogging that is so seductive. Does one blog to be seen? To reach out to change others lives? To fill a gaping hole in one's own life that otherwise would fill with all those festering doubts to which one may fall prey to if one isn’t careful? To become another person for a short time pretending to be someone you are not if only in the eyes of others? So why do you blog? And what do you look for in other people’s blogs? Do try and answer that one honestly, I think blogging is a fascinating phenomena.

Last thing you bought?

If one excludes such things as duck and chicken feed, and other dull domestic trivia I think the last thing I bought was a mismatched set of old French baking tins in various shapes and sizes. Ah no I tell a lie I bought a whole pile of Donna Leon novels with her Commissario of Police, Guido Brunetti , on Amazon just now at 1 cent each who can resist buying just one more at that price!

Flower of the moment?

Bluebells. I recently bought several hundred wild bluebell seeds from the excellent and extremely helpful people at . Come June I intend to plant them around the edge of our property under the hazel trees and apple trees in the banks to try and re-establish the colonies of them that would have been native here a few centuries ago before farming became more intensive. We already have vast amounts of wild violets, wood anenomies , ( can’t spell them but you know what I mean) wild garlic and primroses.

What are you listening to?

You mean apart from the ruthless clatter of my fingers on the keyboard? Shush a minute and I will see. If you concentrate too you may hear the birds songs , the bees in the apple trees and the hens and ducks in the garden , also less prosaically the sound of French children’s television wafting through the open doors of the salle, and any minute now I will hear “ Maman j’ai faim !” This is a coded way of saying the boys want chocolate cake. It’s that time of day again.

Favourite ever film?

Don’t be ridiculous one can no more have a favourite film for ever or book for that matter unless ones tastes remain constant and static from birth to death. As ones experience grows and we develop and change so do our likes and dislikes surely? The option being stagnation, give me change over stagnation any day. At 8 years old or so I loved Mary Poppins,I used to think at 13 years old that Zefferreli’s Romeo and Juliet was the best film ever, at 27 the Mission. My taste is varied and changeable. But I do enjoy movies like Un long dimanche de fiançailles or la gloire de mon pere ; le chateau de ma mere ( all of which are good romantic escapist films about love in its various guises and constancy. Oh dear does that say something deep and meaningful about my psyche? I do hope not!

Care to share some wisdom?

OOH tricky no one really wants to hear pearls of wisdom unless it happens to agree with what they think. But hey ho! It is, at the risk of sounding like an aged aunt from another era, in my experience, always dangerous to feel superior either about oneself or about ones offspring or lifestyles. Mrs Do-as-you-would-be-done-by ( see if you have no idea who she is, may I suggest you might consider suing both your parents or the authorities in charge of your schooling for if you really have no idea who she is then they failed you miserably )
Smugness is invariably followed at some distance by a sobering slap about the visage with the proverbial wet kipper. Enjoy who you are and what you choose to do or believe without thinking firstly that anything makes your superior to others or that others should feel the same way. Humble pie is hard to digest and tends to repeat on you thus keeping you awake at night.

If you were a god/goddess who would you be?

You mean I am not already? Oh dear me how frightfully disappointing life can be! Oh well if I must be one, I think TohKap the small household god of lost socks will suit very well thank you if the job is vacant. Think what a following one might have, and what power deciding which sock to steal and which to preserve! Each house could have a tiny altar in the laundry with offerings of small china bowls of fabric softener competed with Fabric freshener spray and those strange little sheets of nappy wipes like things scented with some bizarre exotic flower or other that people stuff in their tumble driers to make believe it makes their clothes small fresh.

There we go then, penance done Fennie and I have no doubt either bored, estranged or angered several bloggers in the process unless no one bothered to read this anyway which is a real possibility. Now I must pass the poison chalice to some other soul, so Milla I choose you, as you so bleatingly cried that no one loved you, Blossom and the sheep down her road if they care to join in , Withy brook, salle de bain, Bayou, @TM and PG and of course anyone else who feels the need to be mee mee meed please go ahead and say I sent you!

What one is meant to do is Respond and rework the above questions on your own blog. Replace one question with one of your own. Tag 8 people or however many you want to. Now off you go and annoy the world some of us have things to do.

The photograph is of the apple trees in our garden where I even now am sitting, listening to the bird song, well obviously no I am not in the photo, even Tohkap can not be in two places at once, I think its only luckluk the god of the headless chicken who can truly claim to do that! And yes incidently I am aware th grass needs cutting but I'm writing this so unless Luckluk is free to pitch in then it has to wait.


Milla said...

nah nah ni nah nah, been there, done that but your kindness is noted in my grim black book of favours and slights. yours is far better than mine, sadly, especially your new question and I'd love to know what dull dull one it replaced. I'm glad mine had shed the god and goddess one as fear I have similar delusions of grandeur as you. And fear I do have obsessions that wash up onto the shore of my attention from time to time. I used to rant at my mother for her obsessions and she would correct me that since she seemingly had so many they couldn't possibly be obsessions. But then she always has an answer for everything. And what is the other stuff you are writing? And let me know if the Donna Leons are any good. Thank you, from your whining little blogging friend

jackofall said...

Well it's good to see you haven't lost your touch. I'm playing the bah humbug card and sitting this game out.

Very good choice of god/goddess, TohKap, to whom we have given many an offering in this house, but with ten feet to hose, that is hardly surprising.

Friko said...

I think I might suss your blog out again.
Funny and mad.
Obsession? You don't know the meaning of the word!

Elizabethd said...

Well done. youa re far braver than I, I'm trying to find a way out of feebly saying oh all right then to someone who taged me!
I loved The Water Babies too.

Frances said...

Un peu, I did enjoy reading this, and want to thank Fennie for persuading you to reply.

Just getting the image of the setting in which you live takes me to a different version of spring.

I very much like the notion your home having more books than the library. (I have read many of those Donna Leon books, and always like the scenes when the detective comes home for lunch. I warn you that those books might summon up more visions of Italy, so please approach them with great care.)


ChrisH said...

Excellent stuff, dear heart. Don't leave us so long again.

Pondside said...

You do know, don't you, that you've just reminded all of us of how much we miss your blogs?
Excellent meme - fun to read.

Fennie said...

That was great. OK, I shouldn't judge but it was most excellent, funny and compelling and self-deprecatory in funny ways while still managing to convey the impression that you are one of those adventurous aunts, much given to romance and elegant hauteur, that has just walked off the pages of a Saki story.

I love the picture of your garden and I am intrigued by you children's speech. Do they talk to you and one another in French? Or was that just for the benefit of Madame Grognonne no doubt polishing the candlesticks in the deeper recesses of the day room?

Un Peu Loufoque said...

Yes fennie, re your intruigedness( not a real word but I do like it) regarding our off springs chatter, they are billingual but tend, by choice, to speak most of the time in French as its the language they use all day at school. They will often speak both languages in the same sentence at high speed swapping from one to the other as it suits thier need ,but they do all thier arguiing in French! I rather like the idea of being one of sakis aunts!


Ah Un Peu, I have found you again. It is rather late and I should be in bed since I've been knackered for weeks, but I couldn't resist reading this when I gathered from P/Coo site that you'd been memed.

Like Milla, I instantly want to ask you: what else are you writing? Journalism, novel? Do tell...

Like Jackofall, I'm feeling rather left out but feel it's probably safer to play the bah humbug card and pretend I don't care. Despite your kind offer, I would feel a fake to write about MeMeMe without someone actually really wanting to know!! (and anyway, I need to go to sleep)

Being a linguisty person and a francophile who always planned to live in France and have little French enfants going to little French ecole, I was also interested in the french request for stomach filling (aka chocolate cake). I feel just a teensy bit envious, je dois dire, of your French idyll. And that's what the pic of your chairs on a 'rustic' lawn under a blossom tree certainly make it appear. When can I come and visit??

Cait O'Connor said...

Thorough enjoyment as ever.

bayou said...

I'll write then on this wee paper and fold it 16 times and put it in the hole of the old willow. ;-)

I enjoyed that and the view in your garden!

Exmoorjane said...

Well, that was a lot of fun.... Very glad you left in the god/goddess one (and bah humbug to Milla for slashing my own addition to this little game). Do like your own addition though -why, indeed, do we blog? Glad you're playing the game though - for whatever reason. you;re always a good read.....


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