Sunday, 30 December 2012

Taizé Goes to Rome

The Pope joining the Taizé prayers (F1 TV)
As at the end of every year, the brothers of Taizé leave their community in France for a few days and go off to the European Meeting - this year it’s Rome. The young people arrived in Rome on Friday and they will stay until 2nd of January.

The brothers leaving the prayers in Rome (Taizé website)
The Pope joined the prayers last night in the square outside St Peter’s Basilica with the 40 thousand or so young people joining in. One of the photos was taken from the news on France 1 last night and the other is from the Taizé website. I particularly like the one showing the brothers leaving the prayers and moving towards the pilgrims in the square – from their side, it must be a very moving and uplifting experience to see so many people there just because of them.

End of Sunday's service in Taizé
But what happens here when everyone has gone? Well prayers go on as usual, there is always someone here. The old brothers who can’t travel, the sisters of St Andrews and of course, the local congregation. This morning the Sunday service was held in the small Romanesque church. It was packed with the hundred or so locals who come every Sunday, rain or shine, pilgrims and brothers or not. A very intimate and different kind of service, with the singing ringing round the Romanesque edifice, a sound not often heard within these walls, but it is what they were built for and it is good to see the church being used in this way, every so often.

La Tuilerie Website for accommodation within walking distance of Taizé.

Saturday, 22 December 2012

Wine for Christmas

New wine producer in Bray
When people stay in the gîtes or on the campsite, they often ask us, what good wine there is to buy round here. Well we are in Burgundy, so you would suppose that the red is good. Actually we are in the white Burgundy wine region and good local reds are few and far between. Having said that, there is a pocket of red wines that are quite superb and only well known to the locals. Those are the wines from Bray, a couple of kilometres from here.

When we first arrived, some French people staying on the campsite, invited us to join them for a glass of red wine they had bought from Bray and we were stunned by the quality. All of the local red wines we had bought had been unmitigated disasters and expensive to boot. At around 8 Euros a bottle, Henri Lafarge is not that expensive and is every bit worthy to be called a Burgundy.

Henri Lafarge has been selling off small parcels of his vineyards over the last few years and there are now two new, young producers of wine in Bray, who do an excellent job. Peter Gierszewski – Domaine de Thalie - was the first that we got to know. He is farming organically and surprisingly his bottles do not shout ORGANIC at you, nor does the price and even more surprisingly his wine is quite superb. At long last someone who is confident of his ability as a producer not to have to rely on a gimmick.

Jeweller showing his wares at the wine tasting
A few weeks ago another new viticulteur in Bray (Christophe Perrin) had an open weekend, you could taste the wines and he had invited local artists and food producers to join in the fun. Our favourite goats’ cheese maker La Trufière from Lys was there, along with someone selling oysters and other shellfish, a local painter, potter, jeweller and basket maker, but we were there for the wine.

Apparently he had bought four different parcels of land and he started making wine in 2009. He had two parcels for white and two parcels for red wine, he also combined the two different whites to make, in my opinion, a far superior wine.

Different soil types with their respective bottles
In the wine cellar where you could taste the red wine, there was a little display of soils samples from the four land parcels and I was amazed that the content of the ground was so very different for each parcel, despite the fact that the parcels are very close to the other. No wonder the wines all had a distinctive flavour.

Now here is some really good news for all those visiting here. Monsieur Perrin is moving the Chazeux next year - just at the end of our road - so we will even less distance to go to get some really good wine.

Merry Christmas everyone – we’ll be enjoying a good bottle of local Burgundy red this year!

For details of the accommodation we rent out near Bray and other excellent wine areas see La Tuilerie Website.

Sunday, 16 December 2012

Mud Huts and Prayer Stools

Taizé nativity scene 2012
It’s that “Taizé Nativity Scene” time of year again. Rather than do a rundown week by week, here’s just two pictures in one. This year the theme is Africa, so Mary and Joseph are black Africans, as are all the rest of the cast and the stable is a mud hut. I’m not sure quite what the deeper meaning is behind it, but it is an interesting twist, particularly as when there were discussions to found a Jewish homeland in the early 1900s, one of the options was Uganda. But I don’t think that that is the link they are thinking of.

Romanesque church Taizé
In any case we were in Taizé and as Cees has been trying to photograph the old church for quite some time now, we popped into the little Romanesque church to see if it would be possible. The problem is that the church is incredibly dark inside, spookily so to be honest. Most of the potential windows have been closed off leaving just one real window in the whole church and a few very small windows in the apse. All the windows, bar one, are in traditional Taizé orange which lets very little light through - a bit like the use of red light in the old fashioned dark rooms. The church also has dark grey walls and poor Cees has nearly broken his neck on a couple of occasions, when we have gone in there, tripping over a payer stool left in the middle of the walkway. The church is normally full of young people praying, which means you can’t leave the doors open to let enough light in to walk around without disturbing them. But now that there are only a few brothers and a handful of permanents in Taizé, the church can be found completely empty on some occasions, as was the case the other day.

My first attempt at a Taizé prayer stool
While Cees was photographing the architectural features that the church has to offer, I spotted a lonely prayer stool at the front and decided it was about time I tried one out. I always sit on the floor during services, but I have closely watched stool users, so I know how, in theory, to use one. Having watched far too many novices end up with their legs flailing in the air after misplacing their bottom or having the stool angle the wrong direction, I have never dared to try in public. So now was my chance.

Here is photographic proof of my attempt - not a very good photo I’ll grant you. I must say I was surprised. It was in fact very comfortable. Having said that, I am not sure I would be confident enough to try during a service, it’s that bit where you have to turn around through 180 degrees, that tends to be the death knell for many a middle aged beginner.

Next time I am at a service I will watch how the experts do the turn, then I may move on to practicing at home and then who knows, I could progress to being a fully qualified Taizé prayer stool user.

La Tuilerie Website showing accommodation with plenty of prayer stool practice space and within walking distance of Taizé itself.

Saturday, 8 December 2012

Film and Food - a very French Phenomenon

The other evening we went to see the smash hit film “Les Saveurs du Palais”, which translates as “the flavours of the palace” or “the flavours of the palate”, giving it one of the more clever play on words I have seen since being here in France. It is a film about a woman who was the private cook for an unnamed French president, how she was bullied and generally how her life was made a misery by the chef in the Palais d’Elysée (where the French president lives), until she left after 2 years, then went to live on a sub-Antarctic island and cook for the resident scientists for a year and the film ends when she is setting off to New Zealand to start a truffle farm.

All that makes it sound like it could be an interesting story, but it wasn’t. In fact I found it difficult to find a coherent story line at all, the problems and ideas were not worked through and what an Australian film crew was doing in the midst of it all, is still a mystery to me. Having said that (apart from the Australian film crew) the casting is spot on and the acting was superb, but surely that is not enough to make this film such a huge hit? No it is not.

The real reason for this film’s success, is peculiarly French. It is in fact the food that keeps this film playing to sell-out audiences. The food is truly exquisite. Even the mention of the menus to be prepared drew sighs from the audience and the filming of a Bresse chicken with truffles stuffed under its skin got gasps of ecstasy. Every single dish displayed, got an ooh or an ahh and when the president ate a piece of bread dripping with butter and loaded with slices of truffles (see photo) washed down with a glass of Chateau Rayas 1969 (which sells today for over 500 Euros a bottle ex tax) the audience went into raptures of delight.

Truffles on country bread dripping with melted butter

That was what the film was about – food - French food at its best. The final dish presented, just before the end of the film, was the iconic dessert St Honoré which echoed back to her time at the Palais d’Elysée, who’s other address is 55 Rue de Faubourg-St-Honoré.

St-Honoré gateau
But a film like this would not be complete without a tasting of its own, so while the director and one of the actors answered questions after the film, four of the best restaurants around here and two viticulturists from nearby, set up a tasting of their own specialties, for the nearly 300 members of the audience. We all went down to the front of the cinema and crowded on to the stage and in something reminiscent of a rugby scrum, we all managed to try out the food and wine on offer.

Nowhere else in the world can I imagine an evening like this, it was as I said - it was very French.

La Tuilerie Website

Saturday, 1 December 2012

Christmas Markets

Mères de Noël
We woke up this morning to a lovely crisp, very cold, white day, -4 degrees outside and frost on the fields and trees. It makes a change from the miserable, wet and foggy weather we have been suffering for the last few weeks.

Despite the temperature, it felt so much warmer than previous days and it was a joy to be out and about. So off we went to the annual Mères de Noël exhibition - this year in Massilly and Cortambert.

Massilly village hall
The Mères de Noël are a group of female artists/artisans who display and sell their work somewhere round here, in the lead up to Christmas. They move venues, as the mood takes them and I must say that this year was much nicer than some other years we have seen. The village hall in Massilly, built only about 4 years ago, is an absolutely lovely venue, very light and spacious and the exhibiters had plenty of room to show their products off in their full glory. Cortambert on the other hand was a bit dismal and cramped in comparison, but with the fluffy clouds hanging from the ceiling and the very colourful goods on sale, it still made a pretty sight.

Cortambert village hall
I had a great time looking at all the lovely pottery, jewellery, clothes, leatherwork, wooden toys and glasswork. A great place to get original Christmas presents from.

They are threatening snow tomorrow, so it should be a white day again, but this time we’ll be staying indoors.

La Tuilerie Website

Sunday, 25 November 2012

Back to School

New school in the fog
This foggy Saturday morning we went to school. Up early to the market and back in time to join the members of the town council and their families to have an official tour of the new school now that it is well and truly up and running. Cees was invited as the official school photographer, to document the event.

Official photographer
Having visited the school to take photos every weekend for the best part of a year, we were quite familiar with the layout of the place, but getting inside the school, now that it is full of little tables and chairs with posters on the walls conjugating verbs and showing you how to count, it all really came to life. It is a lovely school and one this community will be proud of for years to come.

We were amazed that a new sports area had been installed behind the school, with a two lane running track and a basketball court. This is open to everyone, it is not exclusively for the school children, a great asset for the village and I am sure it will be well used by many.

Infants classroom
One thing that fascinated me was the school dinner menu, do you remember soggy chips, over-boiled sprouts and semolina pudding? Well I certainly do, so how does a selection from this week’s menu sound: Fish terrine, followed by roast veal with chives and green beans or maybe lentil vinaigrette with shallots, filet of hoki with lemon and pumpkin purée. All of course followed by cheese then a dessert. French children are taught all the essential things in life - not just the 3 Rs.

Old School
Those who wanted could have a tour of the old school. Interestingly one of the classrooms of the old school has been rented out to the Chapaize Music School which gives music lessons mainly to children, but if you want to learn to play the accordion or the piano, age is no barrier. The gym is still in use, for the weekly gym class for adults in Cormatin. Originally the new Zumba class was to be held in the gym, but with over 60 enrolled members, the class rapidly became too big and has had to move to St Roch. It is a very nice gym though, so who knows what other classes may enticed to come to town, now we have such a nice venue.

No event of this nature would be complete without a glass of wine and snacks, to celebrate the event - then it was home for a well earned lunch.

La Tuilerie Website

Sunday, 18 November 2012

Invasion of Saint-Gengoux-le-National

The army march into town
The townsfolk had been nervous for the past week, as the army undertook manoeuvres in the hills above St-Gengoux. It all came to a head on Friday, when the army finally marched into town, right up to the town hall and they laid claim to the mediaeval city.

Well maybe it wasn’t quite like that.. Let’s start again.

Thursday evening I had a meeting in St-Gengoux with the Office de Tourism and noticed that there were “no parking” signs all over the square outside the town hall, reason given a “Military Ceremony” between 08.00 and 12.00 Friday morning. Whilst there had been a bunch of soldiers on manoeuvres up in the hills round St-Gengoux, no one seemed to be any the wiser about what was going on. Now what is a Military Ceremony when it’s at home anyway? Especially as we never see any soldiers in town - ever.

Nifty footwork
Well we had to go and find out for ourselves didn’t we?

We have learned, over the years, that everything around here starts late, so we went to St-Gengoux at 10.00 in the hope that we wouldn’t have to stand around in the freezing weather too long. Amazingly, there were actually some soldiers, we asked what was going on and we were told there was a military ceremony – ummm yes we can read too – so still none the wiser.

Gradually after being pushed from pillar to post by someone in an official looking uniform and watching the Mayor of St Gengoux being pushed from pillar to post by someone in an official looking uniform, all was revealed. It was the passing out parade for the latest recruits to the Base Petrolièrs Interarmée from Chalon-sur-Saône. Petrol lorry drivers to you and me.

The troop are inspected
I couldn’t get to grips with why they kept doing “attention, present arms, order arms, at ease, attention, present arms, order arms, at ease……” and so it went on ad infinitum. Their drill skills were poor to say the least and the fact that the Colonel of the unit could not even turn through 90 degrees without tangling up his feet did give the show a little bit of an amateur touch. However, when all these young lads and lasses received their official caps, there was a real look of pride on their faces and with one of the lasses in tears, I must admit I felt quite proud for them too.

They then went off to march round the ancient streets, to show off their newly won caps and return to the Town Hall, no doubt for a glass of wine. But by then our feet were so cold we decided to abort mission before frost bite set in and we left them to it.

La Tuilerie Website

Saturday, 10 November 2012

Looking for Romanesque Churches

Any one who comes to Burgundy will not fail to spot the fact that there is rather a lot of Romanesque architecture in this area. We have visited all the really great churches in the area a number of times, but recently Cees stumbled upon a website which details “all” the bits and bobs of Romanesque architecture that there are to been seen in Burgundy. A Dutch chap, living in The Netherlands, has taken it upon himself to undertake this gargantuan task.

In true van Halderen style, Cees has set up a database for all the churches we have seen, he has added ones we didn’t know existed from Mr van Boxtel’s website and we have been making trips around these churches. Some of the descriptions were rather vague and so we have had to have more clarification from the owner of the website and when we have finally arrived in the village, we have met and chatted to many of the local residents asking where an ex-church or chapel might be in their village.

Our very own Romanesque church - Chazelle
In the course of the search, we have been invited into private houses (for instance the oldest chapel in Cluny) and we have seen some lovely buildings that are just not accessible or open to the public and what’s more, we have come to know even more gems of architecture and snippets of local history.

Whilst Cluny, Tournus, Anzy-le-Duc and Semur-en-Brionnais, might be some of the classic highlights that everyone comes for, we have visited some absolute gems thanks to this website. Our postcode (71460) has the most churches of any postcode in Burgundy, totalling 44 pieces of architecture and we have found and visited them all.

Finding every little church or chapel has been an adventure in its own right, some are derelict, one is in a field covered in a tarpaulin, some have been turned into something else, others have been so far altered from their Romanesque heritage, that you cannot even see that it was built more than a thousand years ago, but every one has been worth the search.

However, one church did prove very difficult to locate. We were told that there was a wall of a church with a fishbone pattern of bricks in Bonnay - just down the road from here. Well Bonnay may not be very big, but I can tell you when you are looking for a bit of wall it becomes a daunting task. We travel though this village quite often and each time, we searched a different corner to see what we could find, all to no avail. But we were not to be defeated. In the end we went to the Mairie and asked them if they knew where this wall was. The mayor was there and he did indeed know what we were talking about. So here you have it, a photo of the oldest church in Bonnay, not quite what we were expecting - I had visions of something a little bit bigger and a little more obviously church-like, but hey we found it and it is there.

The only remains of the oldest church in Bonnay
All in all, we have visited corners of our Département we didn’t know existed and seen some lovely little villages and met some truly interesting people. But so far we have only visited 173 of the 425 that are listed for Saône-et-Loire, so we still have a long way to go.

La Tuilerie Website showing holiday accommodation - not in Romanesque style.

Sunday, 4 November 2012

An Old Brick

A brick from La Tuilerie
It all started one Sunday afternoon in August when a charming, elderly gentleman stopped his car by our house and asked if we knew anything about Noël Marembeau.  Well as it happens we do - quite a lot actually - he was the guy who built this place.  Noël Marembeau was born in the Auvergne and came to Burgundy to make his fortune by building and running a tuilerie.  Our visitor had come round because he had found an old brick that had been made here, he had Googled Noël Marembeau, Chazelles and had found a blog Cees had written some time ago and so now he was standing in front of our gate.  The wonders of modern technology ! 

We offered him a “tour” of La Tuilerie to explain it all, but it transpired that he had more than a slight inkling about how things worked.  He then went on to tell us that he was part of a small group that were restoring a old gypsum mine and ovens in Berzé-la-Ville and that was where they had found the brick.  He gave us his telephone number saying we must come round for a visit and left.

Berzé-la-Ville gypsum ovens and mill stones
We bumped into him a couple of weeks later at a wedding and he insisted that we make contact to visit the ovens.  Realising he was being more than just polite, we phoned him a few days later, we made an appointment to visit and then met up with two other members of his team one morning in August.  What a superb visit we had!  The site is only open by appointment, although you can see the ovens through the grills.  So we were some of the privileged few who were treated to a fascinating explanation of how everything worked and how the group had uncovered all the treasures that there were now for us to see.

By the ovens, check out our brick in the trolley
There are a total of 9 ovens. The older ones being batch, similar to the way our tuilerie worked, load up, light the fire, cool, then empty.  But 3 were semi-continuous.  In these ovens, the gypsum was put in, in layers, alternating with layers of wood.  The bottom layer of wood was lit and this “cooked” the gypsum layer above it and in turn this gypsum layer lit the layer of wood above.  As the first layer of wood burned the cooked gypsum descended to the bottom of the oven and could be removed, leaving space at the top for another layer of gypsum and wood and so the process went on for as long as required.

Deep in the mines
After the ovens, we were treated to a visit into the mine itself.  The mine was shut down in about 1900 but was used later by mushroom farmers.  It is carved out of the rock and hence no real need to support the roof - unlike a coalmine.  In the 1960s part of the roof collapsed, killing a mushroom picker and so the mine was closed for safety reasons and has been closed ever since.  As we walked into the mine I kept looking up to make sure all was well and seeing the pile of rock that had caved in, reminded us of the dangers that underground workers face everyday.  We felt very honoured indeed to have been allowed in there.

We were so impressed with what these guys had done over the last 30-odd years, they started with the knowledge that the village had had a mine and ovens and they knew roughly where they were, but they have literally dug everything out of the ground, ounce by ounce, by dedicating every Friday afternoon between April and October to this enormous feat.

We spent hours with them and are immensely grateful for the warm welcome they gave us and the time they spent patiently explaining things.  We left with a cheery, you must come and see our tuilerie and that is exactly what they did last week.  All five members of the team arrived on a Friday afternoon (of course) and we spent a couple of hours showing them round and generally chatting. 

La Tuilerie de Chazelle
We show people around all the time, small groups from the Office de Tourisme, people staying in our gîtes, campers, but this tour had the added pleasure of having a group of people who actually understood how things worked and we discussed with them the finer details the construction and of using an oven of this nature, so it was a shared experience and not just one-way traffic.  Comparing their ovens and the cooking process with ours and the differences in the products that the two systems had to cope with, was very enlightening.

I am sure we will be keeping in contact with these people and we are definitely going to follow the progress of a couple of them who are building their own tuilerie, Roman-style, but that is a subject for a later blog.

La Tuilerie Website gives not only details about the holiday accommodation we have, but also photos of the tuilerie and the euqipment that was here in the past.

Sunday, 28 October 2012

What Colour Is a Cow?

Charolais cows in our field
I grew up thinking that cows were covered in black and white blotches, even when I moved to The Netherlands, this seemed to be the natural order of things, but since I have moved to France I know that cows should be white, well a sort of creamy off-white really.  I know this, because we live in Cattle Country - the home of the Charolais. 

Now for those ignorant folks (like me before my enlightenment) who thought that cows were black and white blotchy things, this may come as some surprise and if you are from Scotland where they think that cows are small and hairy things with very long intimidating horns, it may also be difficult to believe, but Charolais are the best beef cattle in the world, no matter what anyone else says and so it is logical that all cows should be large and a creamy off-white.  Have a look at any satellite photo of this area and you will see just how many of the beasts there are in the fields around here.  In fact no self-respecting farmer in south Burgundy, would be seen dead having non-creamy off-white cows in his fields. 

Brown cows in Cluny
However, this weekend, all that changed and quite frankly the shock waves are still wobbling the knees of my bovine friends.  This weekend there were BROWN cows to be seen in great abundance in Cluny.  How is this possible?  How was this allowed?  What was even worse, was that there were farmers from this area parading their brown monsters in a huge tent specially erected for the purpose.

This is the end of civilisation as we know it and next week, I suppose, we will be finding all sorts of multi-coloured things in our fields.
The future?

For our website showing holiday accommodation next to a field with creamy coloured off-white cows in it click here.

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Long Walks in the Countryside

Cormatin Randonnée
When the alarm went of at 6 in the morning last Sunday and I heard rain on the windows, my heart sank and I had a distinct feeling of déja vu. You see last Sunday was the Cormatin walks which we help organise every year. We had worked all day Friday and Saturday preparing for the walks, marking the roads, buying and assembling the food that was to be given out at the food posts. Last year was an absolute disaster, not only financially but on the morale of our little club. It rained all day and no one came to walk, well not nobody, there were in fact 39 hardy souls in total, when an average year should yield about 300. We all got very cold, very wet and very miserable, not to mention the 200 Euros loss - money we can ill afford to lose.

Cees and I set off anyway to meet the others and by the time we reached St Roch (the starting post) the rain had stopped. In the end it was an excellent day for walking, a bit cold for us at the food posts, but for the walkers, there was no sun and until about 4 in the afternoon, no rain either. We had a very good year, more than 400 entries, so that should help a bit towards paying for the old aged pensioners’ lunch next year.

The food distribution left a little to be desired though, our president had chosen the typical French model of centralisation, so the sandwiches were prepared in St Roch and the distributed (or not) to the food posts. Not a bad idea, but seeing as even the French government had scrapped the centralisation of food distribution back in the 60’s. it might say something for the efficiency of the system. In the end I had to drive to collect the missing sandwiches, by which time of course, all the walkers had disappeared - ah well better luck next year.

Chardonnay Randonnée
This Sunday the alarm was set for a much more relaxed 7 in the morning, for our favourite walk of the year – the walk in Chardonnay. A misty morning, but the weathermen had promised a nice day with sun in the afternoon. Well they were wrong, it turned out to be a beautiful day with sun all day and by the time we were half an hour into our two hour walk, we were sweltering. Never mind, it was all worth it.

I always marvel at the organisation of this walk, I have absolutely no idea how many walkers they have, but if someone said 5 or 6 thousand, it would not surprise me. The photo is of one of the food posts and everyone got a sandwich ! Decentralisation was the key - maybe our president could learn a trick or two from them…

Food distribution on the Chardonnay walk
Anyway, we had a superb walk through stunning landscape and we came home and slept in the garden – 25 degrees in the shade and it is the end of October – now that is the way to spend a Sunday.

La Tuilerie Website gives details of our holiday accommodation, ideal for a walking holiday of all degrees of difficulty.

Friday, 12 October 2012

Mur D’Escalade

I’ve mentioned the climbing wall in the Bois Dernier quarry that the tourist tax has paid for, before, but we noticed the other day, that everything is now, well and truly up and running. All the signs are up, guiding climbers to a total of 10 climbs, 5 for beginners, 3 for advanced climbers and 2 for experts. Not to mention of the course the children’s play ground where we had so much fun, on the little assault course, back at the beginning of the year . There are also signs up about the wildlife you can see when you are there and a lot of details on the geological background of the rock formations.

Well we just had to try it all out. Now everyone who knows us, knows just how much we love climbing up high. It was all so tempting, but I didn’t have the right equipment no ropes, no clips etc.

What the heck - I just had to have a go...

And what a wonderful view from the top, you can even see La Tuilerie in all its glory.

It is a much quicker way up the hill to Taizé that via the path. Maybe I shall recommend it to our guests as an invigorating way to get to church in the morning...

La Tuilerie de Chazelle holiday accommodation near Taizé, Cluny and Tournus, not to mention a lovely climbing wall just down the road.

Sunday, 7 October 2012

If you go into the woods today….

I am normally woken up by the bells of Taizé, but the other morning I had a rude awakening to the sound of heavy machinery. Yes we hear tractors when there is haymaking or hedge cutting, but nothing like this noise and in any case, all of that has been done for the year, so I had no idea what was going on. While we sat down to breakfast, we could see some ominous lights approaching the house through the woods. I went to investigate and peering through the trees on the edge of the forest I saw a huge machine chewing up and spitting out trees.

I then went into the forest to investigate properly and saw that this machine was chopping down every tree smaller than a certain diameter, presumably to bring more light and life into our little bit of the woods. I must say that it was a lot more effective than we were when we were allocated a section of the forest to cut down for winter fuel. A one off experience – never to be repeated, and even though that was way back in the winter of 2005/6, I can still feel all those aches and pains. So who knows maybe we can get some cheap and painless wood for the winter ... dream on !

La Tuilerie Website

Saturday, 29 September 2012

We’re on the Map

We have been very active in the local business network now for about 4 or 5 years. This includes compiling and issuing a little brochure advertising all the businesses affiliated to the organisation and managing the triptych just next to Cormatin Château, which has a little explanation of each business as well as map locating each business.

A little team is responsible for keeping the brochure up to date, which we are part of and this year I helped to design the new cover - I think we did a very good job actually.

But the triptych has been the province of someone else in the organisation who seemed to make a meal out of ordering and placing new names as businesses came and removing old names as businesses went. We were promised that our business would be placed on the triptych as soon as we joined and whilst I don’t really expect anything from it, it has niggled me slightly that nearly 5 years later we were still not there.

Well this year, the “brochure team” was put on the case and we have come up with a new style triptych, to match the new style borchure. We have had many hiccoughs along the way, constant errors in the copy, chasing businesses for their details, inept printers and then the panels were delivered too small for the triptych (whoops! – who measured that one?) but last Saturday, we were up our ladders bashing the old triptych to bits and gluing the shining new ones in place.

So at last, La Tuilerie de Chazelle is officially on the map !

Our business website

Sunday, 23 September 2012

Day out in the Brionnais

Last week we went to a client’s house to install a piece of equipment. To ensure it was working we needed to go back to their house after a few hours. Now you can’t charge someone for just sitting around waiting, so what better a chance than to just clock off and do some sightseeing.

First stop lunch.

Well if you are in the Brionnais, on a Wednesday, the only place to eat is Le Tour D’Auvergne in Saint Christophe en Brionnais. What a lunch - for what a price. We don’t even bother visiting the cattle market any more (which is well worth the visit by the way) we just go there for the lunch.

With hours to spare we went off on a Romanesque church tour. Along with the Clunisois, the Brinnoais houses a very dense population of Romanesque churches. This day we managed a whole host a little gems, but you can’t beat Anzy-le-Duc and Semur en Brionnais.

We had a great day out, but when you get down to it…. no day out is complete without a ride on a giant turkey.

La Tuilerie Website
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