Thursday, January 21, 2021

Looking back a year

French Village Diaries looking back a year
January 2020, fun and laughter in the village bar

We often like to look back in our photo library to see what we were doing a year ago, two years ago etc, and comparing life and the weather to today. A look back to just last year and it is difficult to believe how different life was then. My diary shows village meetings where galette des rois would have been shared as we all wished each other a happy, healthy and prosperous new year. Ed was in Poitiers and Adrian was busy travelling back and forth between here and the UK, but still managed to be around for a riotous fortnight of socialising. 


On Friday 17th we apero’d with friends in their garden, laughing and having fun as we tried out our new hula hoops, that we were convinced were the latest thing in exercise and fitness. Then we were off to the salle des fêtes for the annual council and village employee’s meal, a huge seafood spread, and our last council perk before the end of our six-year term of office. On Wednesday 22nd there was a live music night at the village bar, followed two days later by our sing-along Grease movie night, which rolled seamlessly into the bar’s monthly vide frigo (empty the fridge buffet night) on Saturday 25th. We then finished January off in style with our final Bollox to Brexit fish and chip soirée on 31st.


Hugs and kisses were given and received in abandon. Glasses were raised, meals were shared with friends, laughter rang out and we usually ended up singing. No one owned a mask. Today, we are living under a curfew that means no leaving home after six o’clock in the evening. There are no apéros with friends, no shared meals and as the village bar closed its doors for good last autumn, no events to attend. Even the meetings I’d normally look forward to, have lost their enjoyment thanks to the barrier of the masks, the social distancing and the fear of contamination. There is a real feeling of having retreated from village life into my own little family bubble where I’m happy knowing we are all safe and together, but I also know the longer this goes on, the more difficult it will be to get back out there.


Tonight, at nine o’clock, for a number nerd like me, will be quite a significant time, being 21h on the 21st day, of the first month, of the 21st year, of the 21st century. I’m not sure what message the universe will send, but it’s definitely been a wild and windy day today. We will certainly be taking a moment, raising our glasses to mark it, and hoping it brings positive vibes. 

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