Steve and Yvette Kellow moved to France some years ago and the last we heard they were somewhere near the Dordogne. After a bit of Facebook searching we found them living in a small village called Sirod and, after a bit of Google-Earthing, discovered that our winter stop-over at Auxonne was within striking distance. Armed with all this we made contact, and Steve K came up to Auxonne, collected us and took us ‘up-homers’ on a ‘grippo run’ (all naval expressions dragged out just for fun.) It was lovely to meet Yvette and see where they live.
Sirod is a tiny place inside what looks like a huge crater. Access to it is through a tunnel in the crater wall and Steve K tells us that Sirod was not discovered by the Romans at all during their occupation of Gaul because there was no tunnel at the time.
As we came out of the tunnel to see Sirod and the surrounding countryside open up in front of us, Steve K said ‘welcome to Bloody Brigadoon!’ It is really beautiful, especially offset just for us with all the glorious winter colours, which compete in strength, variety and contrast with those of New England in the fall.
Of course, everyone knows that the first weekend with Steve and Yvette was the Rugby World Cup Final between France and New Zealand. Steve K arranged for us to join in at the local bar for the whole day’s festivities.
This started at 0845 with coffee and face-painting, followed quickly by silly hats and much joviality. The mood was set for the day as breakfast was served: ham, sausages, potatoes, salad and local red wine. The game was thoroughly enjoyed by all, despite the final score. In fact the mood of the day did not even twitch after the end of the match. We all felt that the French deserved to win, but you, dear reader, will probably not wish to enter into a post-match-mortem at this juncture – neither does the author.
Le Coque crowed every time the Kiwis kicked the ball and each time he crowed, they missed. Nevertheless, after the final score we believe he was assigned to the pot.
The next part of the day was amusing. A game was played where a rugby ball was placed, penalty style, in the doorway of the bar and the objective was to kick it and hit the shuttered window of the house opposite. Imagine doing this in England without being arrested? I can’t. What a giggle. One of the chaps had his Land Rover parked under the window in question; it was quickly moved.
A long day, where we ended up at a friends house very late in the evening to be welcomed like long lost friends and included, without pause, as guests at table for the family meal. Regardless of the hour the whole family, including tiny tots, were up partying. What a lovely day.