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THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE MAGAZINE FOR THE HERAULT

FREE

Aug Sept 2012

www.theheraulttimes.com

MUSIC* WINE* GARDENING* NATURE* HISTORY *EXHIBITIONS* ART* FOOD 1


THT August / September 2012

Contents THT

Never Miss An Issue: Visit www.theheraulttimes.com and subscribe now

08

Every Month

This Month

04 Editorial

08 Michael Palin talks ‘The Truth’ Image: John Swannell

05 Letters 06 My Place 07 And Another Thing 09 Apicius Dines Out

15 The ‘Tree Dweller’ movement reaches Montpellier

Michael Palin

10 Wine Times

14

11 Business / Legal

13 GTBY 16 Days Out

WIN Referendum - Yes or No?

21 Looking Back

In this issue you can win *A signed copy of Michael Palin’s novel ‘The Truth’

26 Recipe Times 28 DIY

22 Art - Does Abstract Art still have a place? 25 Undress yourself in Cap d’Agde

12 Garden / Nature

17 Lifestyle

14 Tim King asks “What does it mean to receive a ‘no’ vote.”

22

*A collection of cosmetics courtesy of Aux Petits Sabots

28 E-Male 31 Sport

Cover Photo ‘Escape to the Mountains’ Abstract Art - Bye bye 3

© Kiff Backhouse 2012 www.kiff-backhouse.com


The Herault Times 1 Grand Rue, St Thibery,34630 Publisher: Gatsby B Director : Robin Hicks Editor : Emma Foulger Advertising Director: M.F. Art Editor: Daisy B EDITORIAL EDITOR@THEHERAULTTIMES.COM ROBIN@THEHERAULTTIMES.COM SUBSCRIPTIONS For all enquiries please visit www.theheraulttimes.com/subscribe or contact us on info@theheraulttimes.com ADVERTISING For display advertising and Classifieds please contact Kevin on 0624 63 63 77 or mail advertising@theheraulttimes.com For web advertising please contact Gatsby on 0624 63 63 77 or mail gatsby@theheraulttimes.com The Herault Times www.theheraulttimes.com COPYRIGHT AND DISCLAIMER The Herault Times The Herault Times is owned and published by L’Herault Art L.A. Publishing (51926616300010). The publisher, authors and contributors reserve their rights in regards to copyright of their work. No part of this work covered by the copyright may be reproduced or copied in any form or by any means without the written consent of the publisher. No person, organization or party should rely or on any way act upon any part of the contents of this publication whether that information is sourced from the website, magazine or related product without first obtaining the advice of a fully qualified person. This magazine and its related website and products are sold and distributed on the terms and condition that: The publisher, contributors, editors and related parties are not responsible in any way for the actions or results taken by any person, organisation or any party on basis of reading information, stories or contributions in this publication, website or related product. The publisher, contributors and related parties are not engaged in providing legal, financial or professional advice or services. The publisher, contributors, editors and consultants disclaim any and all liability and responsibility to any person or party, be they a purchaser, reader, advertiser or consumer of this publication or not in regards to the consequences and outcomes of anything done or omitted being in reliance whether partly or solely on the contents of this publication and related website and products. The publisher, editors, contributors and related parties shall have no responsibility for any action or omission by any other contributor, consultant, editor or related party. END

13 Editorial Sea, sun and sand...........

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t is all here in the ‘real’ South of France – over 300 days of sun a year; one of the countries longest sandy beaches between Agde and Sète, and the crystal clear Mediterranean Sea…. we know, you’ve heard it countless times before… So what more could you want? Well, may we humbly suggest you might like a change in this departement of contrasts and surprises? Venture into the hills, into the Haut Languedoc National Park and find a different world. Cooler, less crowded and worth the drive. It is one of the glories of the Herault that within an hour of the coast you can be high up above the plain – in wild unspoilt countryside with villages and forests seemingly untouched by the modern era - where you might even see horses, cattle and sheep grazing on green meadows. With so much to choose from it is hard to pick out the “best” but the eerie lunarscape of Lake Salagou, the marching limestone figures in the valley around Mourèze would be a start. Or for a completely different world take the road up to Lac Salvetat-sur-Agout where it is a serener, greener and an altogether different experience. The Bells Observant readers might have noticed that most local church clocks

chime twice – this is not some mistake but a device to ensure people working in the fields knew the time. Imagine the frustration when pruning vines to hear the bells ring once, before you had started counting. It might lead to the serious and unthinkable error of missing your lunch. So the first bells are a warning for the second set, which strike a minute or so later, thus you can be reassured of being able to accurately count the number of chimes. The Herault Times so far We really didn’t expect to have made such a success so quickly when we launched in June. But thanks to you our readers, the writers and distributors we already seem to be part of peoples lives in the Hérault. If you would like to be sure of getting your copy of the Herault Times direct to your home each month – please subscribe and we will post a copy directly to you. Distribution If you would like to help us make sure we reach as many people as possible – maybe you would like to become a distributer – it can be fun, you will meet people and from time to time meet The HT team at one of the HT get-togethers. We would love to welcome you on board, so please let us know if you are interested.

TALK TO US If you have a story, an event or even an idea that you feel may be for The Herault Times or its associated publications please contact us at info@theheraulttimes or visit the site at www.theheraulttimes.com

CONTRIBUTORS The writers and contributors are the stars of this magazine and without them I would have all of my hair and would not be drinking gin at 9 am every day. Having said that, you should know more about them. All their bios can be found at www.theheraulttimes.com. Please read them, they deserve to be recognised for their fantastic contribution. 4


Letters BREATHALYSERS Is there anybody else out there annoyed at the big business and corruption that is the breathalyser law? I was happy with random breathalyzer stops. I even agreed when the fluorescent jacket was made law but now we have to presume that those that willingly drink and drive will take their own breathalyser, see that they are over the limit and then not drive home? No, this is another tax on the law abiding. Manno by email

website asking whether people wanted an English, French or mixed language magazine. Why do you need to humour those that have nothing to do but complain about everyone else. I read French papers, I used to read bbb and now I read your magazine (not really a comparison). I believe that content is important and in our reading group we use your magazine to teach English to our French members. Don’t apologise to little minds. Veronique, Agde

SPELLING PLEASE Dear Sir, I feel that I have to write to talk about the one glaring problem with your magazine. Spelling. In what is definately the best magazine I have read here (9 years) I have to say that the typography and spelling is a disappointment. Please, please do something about this. Name withheld by email

Thankyou for your generous comments. We believe everyone should have their opinion and a place to say it. The poll carried a 96% result for an English language magazine but it is important to ask the question AND hear the answer. Did everyone hear that by the way....96%. Oh yes!

This is a valid argument and one that we don’t offer excuses for. We are looking to improve this area as a matter of urgency. MARSEILLAN I was stunned into a temporary silence by your cover photograph on Issue 2. I had friends down here and they asked to visit Marseillan based on your cover. Sitting at the café drinking coffee looking across at a place I know very well and seeing it through your photographers eyes was a special moment. Please thank him. Ann Agde FRENCH OR ENGLISH I was very disappointed that you felt the need for a poll on your

new IE is good. Not my 1st choice but good. Are you happy with choice? Is Steve Jobs a hero to you?

Money raising cyclemarathon UPDATE

Readers of our first edition might remember the heroic cycle ride John Holmes was making to support Ovarian Cancer research. At the moment he has collected over £5,000 and should finish up with £7,500 to €9,500. He rode 2874kms burnt 37,322 calories and climbed 38,837 metres. “Over the 21 days I also managed to lose 3kgs in weight, making me the lightest I have been for two years,” says John.

IE? ARE YOU MAD? I am writing to comment on the browser article in Issue 2 of your magazine. Do you really recommend Internet Explorer? It is proven that this browser is clunky, problematic and is so often targeted by undesirables that anybody using this is asking for trouble. I only use Opera or Dolphin and query the logic of stating that Internet Explorer is worth considering. And while on the general subject. What mobile phone network do you recommend? Christopher. by email

ENGLISH LANGUAGE If this is an English language magazine then why are there so many americanisms in it? Americans do not speak English you know.

The good part of this Christopher is that you have options. There are now choices that didn’t really exist before and we don’t want to be told what to do do we? The

Oh gee, ‘Americans don’t speak English’. That’s the 4th contact

saying the same thing. Have a nice day y’all. I think you need to get out more. JARDIN DES SENS I read your writing on Jardin des Sens in Montpellier and want to write that it is very good. The restaurant is not just about eating but is a experience of art and sensuality. The visuel experience is for the world and I hope that I win your prize. Thankyou for telling all about these people. Thankyou. Pierre IMPORTANT It has come to my attention that you have prizes in this magazine. Prizes that I would like to win. If I win a trip to a castle and some wine and a meal at a Michelin star restaurant I might be able to keep my wife from leaving me. She is French by birth and I love her. So? Did I win? Tim by email No! Enter the competitions and you might! OFFICE DE TOURISME I wanted to read your magazine so went to The Tourist Office in Montpellier as you intruct me I can on your website. I could not find it. I asked at the counter and after going through 3 different people I was given a copy. I have friends in Sète who say it is on public display. Why so different in Montpellier? Oh I agrree. Montpellier is run as a business and charge for displaying. This will be discussed in the forum on: www.theheraulttimes.com

The Other Letters A selection of excerpts fom letters that we will post anonymously............. “Happy 10th Birthday to The Herault Times. I have lived in Perpignan for 14 years and didn’t even know about you.” I hope you are a psychic.

“Do you recommend places in your magazine? We hope to show our beautiful parts off to friends this summer and wondered where we should go to do this.” Maybe Agde?

“Americans do not speak English!” Have you been to the UK recently? Nor do they.

“I like you people. The Herault Times is my kind of newspaper. I probably only read you once a month though, guess you sell out?” Daily, weekly, monthly. THT

IMPORTANT: This magazine is intended for the use of the individual(s) who picked it up. This magazine may contain information that is helpful, opinionated and can at times be unsuitable for overly sensitive Persons with no cultural credibility. If you are not sure then may we politely suggest that you pass it onto someone else as to continue reading is not recommended and may constitute an irritating social faux pas. No animals were harmed in the making of this magazine, and believe it or not one single opinion is definitive- period. 5


Retired premier league footballer Jean Pierre Molina left the world of professional football and the celebrity lifestyle that went with it when he moved to Bouzigues in 1968 and began a lengthy career as a conchyliculteur (shell fish farmer). He has lived through the many changes in the Bassin de Thau, from the booming 70s and 80s when the clinking of French and Algerian pastis glasses could be heard across the étang, to the recent, dramatic decline in oyster production due to a virus. Despite the recent challenges facing oyster farmers, Jean Pierre nevertheless has the bearing of a man at peace with himself.

The wonderful irony of my birth,” says Jean Pierre Molina, “is that I was born on July 4th, 1942 in Sète, - American Independence Day – the same day that the American air force was bombing the German occupying forces there! They blew up the port and the train station.” He smiles wryly.

farming. In the late 60s the Bassin de Thau was producing significant amounts of shell fish. Fishing was also plentiful, both in-shore and further afield. Across France, the economy was growing exponentially and there was high employment. He describes the party

My Place

J

ean Pierre

Molina

He was then sent to a wet nurse in a local village, which was common for babies during the war; and if his generous hand gestures are to be believed, her pendulous bosoms, which were feeding two other baby girls at the same time, are indelibly etched in his imagination. His train of thought moving across the familiar landscape he has sculpted from those events, which for no apparent reason stand out for him, he remarks on the complex he had in his formative years of being so much taller and thinner than his peers. But it was those etiolated legs that carried him to a career in professional football. In 1963 he was hired by Nimes Olympique, joining the ranks of the footballing heroes of the day.

Jean Pierre’s countenance is of a man who is content with his lot in life. His temporary suspension from football for breaking his contract with his team betrays, however, a certain intransigence; the spirit of a human being who follows his own council, an attribute that would prove well-suited to the life of a paysan de la mer, which requires long, reflective hours working with the rhythm of nature. Nearing the end of his career as a player, Jean Pierre was considering becoming a trainer or manager; however it was a friend of his, a fellow professional who played for Montpellier and whose father owned a successful, shell fish business in Bouzigues, who suggested that he try his hand at Oyster

all of the civil servants and bankers went on strike, just when I needed a loan to set myself up, but it was absolutely impossible! So during that time I had to play football to earn money.” The heavens, however, have continued to smile kindly on him. 25 years as president of the Sète syndicate of conchyliculteurs - Jean Pierre is proud to note that he was also the first farmer to take a woman out on his boat to train her, although it remains a very male-dominated role with women still working almost exclusively as sorters and packers, etc.; an award winning restaurant on the Bouzigues quay, L’Arseillère, whose guests include close friends Petula Clarke and the late Sasha Distel. He has also been a judge on French Masterchef. Happy as an oyster in water, “I never tire of the morning light on my way out to the tables, or that magical time just before sunset.” He confesses though, as we clamber up to his undeveloped land behind his farm - one of the 500 or so that extend as far as the eye can see along the shore of the bassin –that he would like to give up his restaurant eventually and spend all of his time here, raising his oysters and mussels, perhaps serving guests impromptu delicacies harvested from the étang. Notwithstanding the threat to the local oyster industry caused by a virus which thrives in temperate waters and which has led over the last five years to the demise of many oyster farms and a halving of employees, Jean Pierre remains calmly optimistic that a solution will be found. It is an attitude that lies at the core of his personal faith. Respect, he says, for nature and for one’s own moral integrity is the key to a good life.

atmosphere that resounded around the bassin, and muses for a moment on the considerable quantities of the strong aniseed spirit introduced by Algerian fishermen that was drunk. Relationships, he says, were good between the local fishermen and the Algerians who had been arriving in the area since the end of the Algerian War of Independence (1954–62). They brought not only their heavy liquor, but also better fishing boats and techniques which were subsequently adopted by the locals. Charmed by the life of a conchyliculteur, Jean Pierre discovered a passion outside of football. A committed Protestant (he mentions Nimes, Montpellier and Sète as strong protestant areas), he describes fishing as particularly apposite to his beliefs: the discipline, willingness to work and an innate respect for nature. “It’s a job you have to enjoy; the relationship with nature is profound. I was also lucky to have experienced the major changes which have brought so many positive changes for us.” Over the course of his forty four years as a farmer, the small, wooden, 9cc boats have been replaced by 11 metre, 250cc boats and the plant-to-harvest systems have been mechanised - although it is striking how much handling of the each oyster is still involved. From the cementing of the ‘ naissants’ (baby oysters) on to the 50m lengths of chord, to their sorting by size and packing. The only thing Jean Pierre has concerns about in terms of current Jean Pierre with Sacha Distel techniques, is the potential traumatisand Petula Clark ing of the oysters as they are pulled out of the water by mechanised pulleys. An oyster’s response to fear is to produce a fibrous substance which affects the quality of the flesh, for which the Bouzigues Oysters are so famous for. Jean Pierre had a last fling with football during the first few years of his life as a conchyliculteur. One month after starting his apprenticeship, the May ’68 revolution broke out in France. “For three or four months 6


And another thing.......says Abse Swimming for DOGS!

O

ne great thing about living in the Hérault is the swimming opportunities available: in summer the choices are amazing, whether it’s a pool, sea, river or lake. My personal favourite is a private pool in my own garden, but unfortunately I live in a tiny maison de village without even a terrace, let alone a pool. Neither do I own a separate villa backing on to a lake, a river or the sea. Life is so harsh. If I want to swim I have to drive to the sea (45 minutes), to the river (30 minutes), or to a local lake (20 minutes). There’s a municipal pool only 15 minutes away but I’m not wearing speedos for anyone (and the world heaves a sigh of relief). But in summer, for dogs it’s all different. It’s a nice thing to swim with a dog. Our dog, Buffy, a black Labrador-cross loves to swim. Throw a stick, ball, Frisbee or even a stone into a river and you have got one happy dog splashing about. In winter, the little river opposite

our house fills up and our dog loves to play there. In spring, I like to sit by the Source-du-Lez chucking tiny sticks and then watch her happily digging up stones as big as her head.

whole lake is rented in the summer to a restaurant who do not only prohibit dogs from swimming in the lake, but won’t even allow them close to the lake, in case they pee nearby and their pee infiltrates and contaminates the lake where people swim - whereas people never (of course) pee. People are so precious about their swimming areas that they don’t want contaminated by dogs. Bastards. Similarly, 40 minutes away at Lac du Salagou there are “no dogs” signs everywhere. And down by the sea in summer it is also no use, with dogs banned from beaches so people can swim, sunbathe and suck their ice-creams unmolested by mucky mutts. (If I’m honest, I should say the dog is scared of the sea anyway, and the sand is far too hot for her sensitive little paws). The rivers aren’t much better: in parts of the River Hérault dogs are also persona (or rather

But in summer swimming for dogs is a tricky issue. Our river is empty. The Source du Lez is difficult as there are so many people around and the water has got very low. Meanwhile our local lake, Cécélés doesn’t allow dogs in the summer at all. The

The little cars you can drive without a licence

I

n France you do not need a licence to drive a motor vehicle of reduced performance. You might have seen them on the road – they don’t go fast but they are a form of transport allowed for people who have lost their licence. Seems bizarre – you might lose your licence for dangerous driving and yet you are allowed out on the road in these tiny, slow and noisy little cars. No driving licence is needed because of the limitation of performance and size. Fixing a licence plate is required at the rear of the vehicle (it is optional in the front). The French Highway Code defines a’ quadricyle’ or a ‘light motor’ as a motor vehicle with four wheels: •Whose maximum design

speed not exceeding 45 km / h; engine capacity not exceeding 50 cm ³ for petrol engines; or whose maximum net power output not exceeding 4 kilowatts for other engine. •The unladen weight not exceeding 350 kg and the payload not exceeding 200 kilogrammes. Any drivers can use these cars, without a driving licence or medical test drive. In France these cars are mostly used by people who have had their licences revoked or simply, as the law so delightfully puts it, the cars can be used by “people who do not want to pass a driver’s licence by ideology.” There is a very similar law in Belgium. They might be small but surely they can be just as dangerous? 7

canina)-non-grata. The lovely big swimming area on the Hérault, near Saint Guilhem-le-Désert, is a no-no for dogs; and they are also unwelcome at other popular swimming points elsewhere on the River Hérault and further upstream on the River Viz. It’s a doggy nightmare! At the time my poor doggy needs it most, bigoted anti-doggists limit her swimming opportunities. But we are clever. We are sneaky. We have found a solution. We have taken to looking for quieter parts of the River Hérault – more isolated parts of the river where you can swim without official (or even unofficial) interference, except from passing canoes. We can swim around with the dog as much as we like, throw sticks and Frisbees until our arms ache. Fun, fun, fun for everyone! I’m not telling you where though, if everyone goes there with their bloody dogs they’ll completely mess it up and contaminate it with their dog-poo and wee everywhere.


Michael Palin

had papaya for breakfast so all is well as he talks ‘The Truth’ to Daniel James for the HT

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t’s 10.58am on copy deadline day and I’m sitting in the library at Domaine Saint Hilaire with a portrait of Michael Palin hanging in front of me. The portrait, one of six Python portraits by Tom Phillips CBE has the appropriately silly anagram Milli Panache as its title. Despite this silliness and Michael Palin’s reputation as a very nice man, I’m feeling rather nervous as I pick up the phone. After all, it is the first time I’ve ever interviewed a real live portrait. HT - So as everyone knows Michael, you’re a deeply deeply terrifying human being who eats journalists for breakfast…. have you already had your breakfast? MP - I have had some breakfast, a very fruity breakfast. With the vital ingredient being papaya. Which I’ve taken ever since I read an article about the last Pope who sort of survived on papaya apparently. Until he didn’t - survive that is. But he travelled a lot, so I thought that’s obviously a good start to the day. HT – An excellent start. But let’s talk about your new novel, The Truth, which I enjoyed enormously by the way. Large themes with a light touch, a kind of epic quality, but with a recognizably British sense of understatement to it. But – you do lots of things - what made you want to sit down and write a novel? MP - In 2008 I took a bit of time off from travelling and about a year later quite unbidden, an idea came into my head about truth, about the word truth really. And it was really just from the general way in which the truth had been appropriated… the phrase ‘the truth’ – by almost anybody to sell almost anything. Whether it was a product or a politician or a bank talking its way out of crisis – everyone was saying ‘the truth is this, the truth is that’… So I thought, well, how about I write about somebody who embodies all the good things, the truth, and somebody who is drawn to that man, and see where that takes us. HT – Keith Mabbut gets the opportunity of a

life time to write about his hero, the environmentalist Hamish Melville. But as it turns out the truth is not that simple… MP - Well two things happened. One was I felt – I’ve got to make it entertaining, it’s got to be a story that draws the reader in. That’s the first thing about writing any book. And the second thing was that I had to make it sound authentic and different from anything I’d written before. Especially the travel books. At first I thought – well I can write about India because I’ve been to India, but then I realised, I didn’t actually know about environmental warfare and the grounds on which those sorts of battles take place. And I think by going to India to follow up on one of these stories, it gave that section an authenticity that was important. HT – And despite all your travelling over the last twenty years, how often do you get to travel without a camera crew? MP - Well exactly. I mean obviously I get to go on holiday with my wife and with the children, but in terms of travelling alone, not that often actually. When I made the trip to Calcutta and Bengal I went because I was particularly interested in that area myself. It’s not often that I do that, but I quite like it because in a sense you can make your own agenda and you can find out what you are particularly interested in without having to stand there and walk left to right and grin and walk back again on camera. So I don’t do it often, and not often enough. And both the trips for this book - to India and to the Shetlands, I enjoyed very much indeed. HT - The Truth has that kind of thriller pace, of dare I say it, a Dan Brown type novel… MP – I wouldn’t mind his success! HT - …But with a much more English flavour, in that you’re less interested in the explosions and more interested in the characters and the theme. The grenades and the Gandhi style protest, for example, are reported rather than seen. And that certainly gets your imagination going in a very different way. MP - Well that’s good. I’m glad you felt that. Because in some ways I thought well is this a weakness? That Mabbut’s taken away from 8

Image courtesy of John Swannell

A new book, maybe a plane to catch but

the big event of the blockade. But the whole point is, you’re absolutely right, what’s important is him and his standpoint. I think the background to the story – the whole area of environmental politics is very tricky. There’s often a feeling that any environmental initiative is good. Of course in reality even environmentalists can have axes to grind. They choose one cause over another cause – it’s a battlefield out there as much as anything else. And if they’re taking on big corporations, they have to do deals with big corporations, so it’s complex. But rather than getting into the detail of all of that, you see the story through Mabbut’s eyes, picking up a little bit here and there – which hopefully gives it a lighter touch and keeps the story whizzing along. HT - So this book was your idea and you weren’t commissioned by some shady company to write an urgent book for a suspiciously large amount of cash, like Mabbut? MP – Ha! No! I mean I had the idea back in 2009 and it was one of those moments where in about twenty minutes the whole idea came to me and seemed reasonably strong, not the details but the basic backbone. But really what made it happen was that I took on another travel series, which I honestly wasn’t going to do after New Europe – but suddenly I thought I must get to Brazil, see what Brazil’s like, do a four part on Brazil so that meant (Continued on page 9)


Restaurant Review

The H.T. restaurant reviewer Apicius eats at..... La Coquerie - 1 Chemin du Cimetière Marin 34200, Sète (June to Sept. only dinners Oct to May lunch Wed.- Sun Fri. & Sat. dinner Closed Dec. & Feb.)Tel:0647067138

A Falling Star?

E

ating in La Coquerie once again proves that food alone does not make a successful meal. I encountered so many bizarre and unpleasant incidents on my visit there that I will comment on only a few so as not to let it seem that I am exaggerating. My wife and I arrived at 10 to 8 for what was an 8:00 reservation. I found a locked door and after knocking several times it finally opened with a head sticking out saying that they only opened at eight. It was suggested that we come back in ten minutes; in short, get lost. It was not the response I wanted to hear, found it unacceptable and asked why we couldn’t be seated immediately since all the tables are outside and on the street. We were grudgingly shown to our table to await friends. Having all the tables outside makes it vulnerable to the weather but also allows it to possess a lovely view of Sète (the restaurant is located on the hill behind town, next to the cemetery de Marin). The tables, however, are so designed that ultimately it’s incommodious for more than 2 people. Not the greatest of starts but finally THE menu comes. And dear reader, when I say THE menu I mean exactly that. There was literally one menu for the whole restaurant and as everyone in France usually arrives between 8:00 - 8:15 the whole scene becomes rushed and you find yourself being thrown into an artificially nervous situation for no reason. In fact, my friend almost had the menu physically taken from his hand with the excuse that other diners were waiting to see it. When asked why there was only one menu the reply was that madam, who does it herself, cannot be bothered to make more than one since it would take too much time.

(Continued from pg 8)

everything had to be speeded up. So having dawdled a bit in 2009, in 2010 I really set to it, went to

To make matters worse, it is handwritten, by someone who unfortunately did not get an A in Mrs. Dupont’s first grade class in penmanship. What makes the whole episode even more grotesque is that there is only one bill of fare and no deviation is possible. A simple solution would be to put it all on a big blackboard so everyone could easily see what would be served. Need I mention that the same charade ensued with the wine card, as well. Now the positive side to all this is that the food is actually quite good and although the portions are small for what is a rather expensive (€ 58) and limited menu I ate nicely. The menu changes often but is usually meant for piscivorous types. On the evening in question, the courgette stuffed with basil accompanied by a small piece of red mullet and langoustine nectar was a gastronomic highlight; it was simultaneously delicate, flavorsome and very delicious. Even the tempura treated laurel leaves sent out to nibble on at the start of the meal were delectable. No question about it- the food was well made and presented. However, the lack of flexibility on the part of the kitchen continued throughout the meal. My wife is lacto adverse and this was made clear when I made the reservation and reiterated on arrival. Yes, we are aware of that was the acknowledgment. Unfortunately their way of dealing with the problem was not to give a substitute but simply eliminate from

the plates whatever there was that contained any dairy products. The result was that my wife wound up eating less than everyone else at the table because they could not think or care to be bothered with finding an alternative. The final touch of gracelessness was when presented with the cheque I offered to pay with American Express. The proprietress then informed me that she didn’t accept that credit card. Now, this was not the first time I had ever heard that, but it was the first time I had it with the sucking of teeth as how could I dare show her that disgusting piece of plastic. In summary, Madame Majourel the owner/ chef can cook well and probably deserves a Michelin star for that, but she also deserves three stars for arrogance and lack of respect for her customers. It is not a threshold I will pass over again and I think the good folks at Michelin are in need of a rethink.

Apicius

national costume ever on show was a Dutch cycling band in a Japanese theme park wearing clogs, Dutch bonnets, dirndls, and playing Bohemian Rhapsody on trombones.

India, went to Scotland and it was all pretty much written by the end of 2010. HT – You’re giving me the travel bug already. So now for something completely different.

HT - Now I know why we did the quickfire round. So lastly, can we have one highlight from your new Brazil series to look forward to?

The Quickfire Travel Round: Favourite City? Cairo Scariest Road? In San Marino. Friendliest people? Could be anywhere, but usually in the poorest villages. Best Waterfall? Iguaçu! On the border of Brazil where I’ve just been filming. Silliest national costumes? Ah. Without a doubt, the silliest

MP - Well, apart from the Iguaçu falls… probably catching a piranha fish on the end of a stick and then eating it. Piranha al Fresco in the Pantanal, highly recommended! 9

HT - Well thanks for your time Michael. You’ve probably got a plane to catch! MP - I probably do, I’ll have to call the office and check in with Paul. And send me a copy of the Hérault Times if you can, I’d love to see it. Michael Palin’s new novel, ‘The Truth’ is out on Kindle and available from the English Bookshop in Pézenas and Le Bookshop in Montpellier. His four part television series on Brazil will be out on BBC1 in the autumn.

WIN a signed copy of The Truth. See page 16


Wine SUMMER ROSES with Rosemary George

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glass of rosé is the obvious compliment to the Languedoc summer sunshine, especially if you have just arrived from what pretends to be summer in northern Europe. There’s nothing quite like it, sipping rosé by the pool, or to accompany long languid lunches of summer salad. Rosé seems such a simple undemanding wine, yet most wine growers will tell you that it is much more difficult to make than a red or white wine. The reason is the colour. The colour of rosé can vary enormously from the palest of pinks to something that is nearer a light red, with all gradations in between, and it is the colour that creates that all-important first impression. Too light and you think the wine anaemic; too deep and it is no longer a true rosé. It all depends on how long the skins stay in contact with the juice. Essentially there are two ways of making rosé. One is pressurage direct: the grapes are picked and pressed almost immediately, so the only contact between skins and juice comes during the pressing. If the grapes are fully ripe, this is usually sufficient and it makes for delicate colours. Or there is saigné: the bleeding of the tank, where by the juice is run off the grape skins. And in this instance the colour tends to be deeper, and timing is critical, for otherwise it will be too deep. It is also tricky to gauge as the colour changes during fermentation. This is also the method used by those who fear that their red wine might be a bit dilute, so they resort to the simple solution of removing some juice to give a smaller ratio of juice to skins. However, those who take their rosé seriously will tell you that rosé should never be a by-product of red wine. The grapes for rosé need to be harvested before those for red, in order to retain some refreshing acidity. The wine-making parameters are quite different – one wine grower remarked that his rosé may be his cheapest wine, but it is also the most expensive wine to make, as the fermentation is slow and temperature controlled, and that necessitates a considerable amount of electricity. The same expense would of course also apply to white wine. The Languedoc produces any number of good rosé. Rosé is part of the appellations of St. Chinian, Faugères and Coteaux du Languedoc,

as well as Vins de pays, or IGP as they are now called. I look for wines that are refreshing with good acidity, with some fruit, redolent of raspberries and strawberries, and a nicely rounded vinous finish. The more full-bodied wines are better with food, while others are lighter aperitif wines. And drink the most recent vintage. There is rarely any virtue in ageing a rosé. My favourites include, and the list is by no means comprehensive: 2011 Domaine de la Grangette, Côtes de Thau, Piquepoul Noir – 6.00€

This is the red version of the much better known white grape used in Picpoul de Pinet. Michel Moret at Domaine de la Grangette outside Castelnau de Guers is the only wine grower I know to produce as a varietal wine. And the result is delicious, ripe and vinous with a fresh finish. 2011 Domaine Ste. Cecile du Parc, Notes Frivoles, IGP Caux – 6.00€

From a new estate outside Pézenas, made from one third each of Grenache, Carignan and Cabernet Franc. A light colour, with delicate fresh fruit and a dry finish. 2011 Domaine de Ravanès, Pays d’Oc, Le Guêpier – 5.50€

Two thirds Cinsaut to one third Merlot and saigné, with a light orange pink colour. Strawberries and raspberries, what the French so eloquently call red fruit, and even more so on the palate. Quite vinous with a rounded finish. 2011 Château Haut Lignières, Faugères - 6.50€

Mainly Cinsaut. Light colour. Fresh and crisp with a lightly herbal note on the palate. This estate has changed hands fairly recently and the wines have improved significantly. 2011 Mas Cal Demoura, Qu’es Aquo – 9.00€

From an estate outside Jonquières. Mainly Cinsaut, with some Grenache. Rounded and ripe, with hints of crushed thyme, and a lovely freshness. 2010 Clos du Serres, En terrasses – 6.50€

A young estate in St. Jean de la Blaquière. Rounded and ripe, with good acidity and the freshness of the Terrasses du Larzac, with vineyards at a relatively high altitude.

Winners.

Lunch for two people at Le Jardin des Sens WINNER - Thomas Puech-Maurel Award winning mixed case (6) of wine from Domaine Saint Hilaire WINNER - Sue Adams Chabaud Catalogue from Musée Paul Valery WINNER - Marie Benoit ‘Night Ferry 1936 - 1980’ WINNER - Richard Perou Spa Tickets for 2 people at la Distillerie, Pézenas.

WINNER - Carol Bevis

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Business / Legal / News How reading the small print might save you money on RSI payments

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he Régime Social des Indépendants (RSI) is the somewhat infamous compulsory social security and pension scheme for some self-employed entrepreneurs, including auto-entrepreneurs, depending on the nature of their activities. I say infamous in as much as the RSI was born in 2006, further to the merger of the various institutions that used to manage compulsory healthcare and pension contributions for commerçants, artisans and “professions libérales” ; the mammoth task resulted in well-documented issues over the merger of records and ensuing mistakes and delays in processing the said records accurately. Infamous also, because the level of social contributions in France is famously high and often controversial in the eyes of British expats setting-up businesses over here and inevitably comparing systems. Social contributions invoiced and collected by the RSI are however compulsory, the non-payment of which incurring legal proceedings, costs and penalties related to debt recovery. In other words, there is no point fighting the system or trying to evade it: as much as it is painful to part with hard earned cash, these contributions are compulsory and fund key social welfare benefits. This is why most self-employed entrepreneurs tend to have the exact same reaction when receiving a letter from the RSI: open it with a knotted stomach, check the amount, check the date, put a cheque in the post, and make it go away as quickly as possible until next time… an observation which seems to have led some companies to leverage on the RSI name to profit from this Pavlovian reaction.

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The last couple of years have seen homonym companies – i.e. companies using the exact same name or a very similar one – send self-employed entrepreneurs very formal looking invoices which numerous people have simply paid without questioning thinking they were paying RSI social contributions. It is only after receiving a genuine invoice for social contributions shortly after then that numerous entrepreneurs have realized they had been scammed whilst a number of victims are still unaware of what has in fact happened to them. Over the past few months, the RSI has responded to the increase of complaints from victims of the scam and has issued various warnings through leaflets and messages via their website and partners. I discussed the matter with Aurélie Cuminal Turpin, Communications manager for the RSI Aquitaine, a little while ago and she explained: “The invoices issued by such companies bear no link whatsoever with compulsory social contributions. They are in fact subscription forms designed to enrol companies into various directories such as the Répertoire des Sociétés et des Indépendants which has nothing to do with the Régime Social des Indépendants, and is absolutely not compulsory. It is an advertising service and the terms of the contract are at the back of the form; the contract can only become legally binding if it is duly signed and the relevant payment made. The national RSI head office’s legal department is currently investigating legal recourse options but it is a complex matter since all legal mentions seem to appear on the letters sent out and therefore it is not a fraudulous activity as such. As it stands, we strongly advise that people receiving what they think are RSI letters, check the logo and read the small print… If in any doubt, they should contact our services for further clarification.”

For those having already paid what they thought were compulsory social contributions but turned out to be one of these advertising subscriptions, there is little if anything they can do since they have wilfully entered into a legally binding contract. The two main companies identified by the RSI as using the homonym acronym for unfair commercial prospection purposes are the Répertoire des Sociétés et des Indépendants (RSI) and the Sociéte de Référencement sur Internet (SRI). The SRI contact details were nowhere to be found but I contacted the Répertoire des Sociétés et des Indépendants who insisted that their company name had been registered by INPI, the French trademark body, and that all their correspondence clearly stated that their company has no connection to the Régime Social des Indépendants. So next time you get a letter from what you think is “the” RSI, make sure you check the logo matches the official Régime Social des Indépendants, and read the small print to make sure what it is you are about to pay for. If in any doubt, contact your local RSI office. Business Column by Alexandra Thevenet www.thelinkservices.fr

SNCF to go into low Cost Trains SNCF have been looking at Ryanair and others and are following their example. Why? Because SNCF want to be prepared to face the competition from private operators. The policy of SNCF is volume, where other countries opt for passenger comfort. The trains themselves will be existing TGVS refurbished especially for the low cost service. They will offer the minimum: snack bars will be removed and they will fit lighter seats. Passengers will be limited to one piece of luggage and seats and ticket will only be bookable via the internet. Low cost train services are planned to start April 2013. Christopher Elliott

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Gill Pound

Colin Trickett

In The Garden

Nature Notes

Platanes....under Attack

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ugust is usually the driest month of the year and one in which the garden is often resting and can look a bit jaded. With so much interest in the use of native plants in our gardens it is worth mentioning Bupleurum fruticosum – we can see this plant flowering in the garrigue at the moment, but it can also make a valuable contribution to summer interest in gardens with yellow flowers from June until September. It is an evergreen shrub which grows to about 1m50 and is extremely drought resistant; it will grow in full sun or half shade. Use it in a hedge of native species or in a grouping of shrubs. Watering and weeding where and when necessary will continue to be on-going tasks. Remember that watering a flower bed the evening before weeding will usually make the job easier. Containers and hanging baskets may need watering daily during the very hot period, but if you are watering your garden remember that a deep soaking once a week or fortnight is much more effective than frequent sprinkling. During August think about the following: •Towards the end of the month start to divide perennials such as iris and day lilies (Hemerocallis) which will not flower again this year •Continue deadheading perennials which will repeat flower such as Coreopsis, Gaillardias and Rudbeckia to encourage a second flowering. Cut back hardy geraniums to

Bupleurum fruticosum

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he Platanes or Plane trees….. The ultimate symbol of the South of France. Nothing evokes our region more than road side borders of plane trees, providing beauty and shade at the entrances and approaches to our villages and towns and of course on the banks of the Canal du Midi. However, just as was the case with our vines in the 19th century and our palm trees today, our Plane trees are under severe threat from an imported interloper, in this instanceceratocystis platane or Canker Stain, a very deadly fungus that has no remedy. Around 50,000 of these magnificent, 100 feet monsters, some nearing 200 years of age, have been lost to the disease in southern France. The fungus is also ravaging trees in Italy, Switzerland and Greece and there are recordings as well in Dulwich in south London. This catastrophe has been highlighted recently by the spread of the fungus in the lovely trees which border the Canal du Midi. Some 2,000 have already been felled and burnt and this winter the rate of felling will double. Not all 42,000 trees on the canal are affected, the stretch from Castelnaudary to Toulouse is free of the fungus, but the stretch from Carcassonne to the Mediterranean is severely infected. When the canal was built

encourage new growth. •Collect seeds from annuals such as Cosmos and Californian poppies, you can sow these next spring •Clip back lavenders once they have finished flowering, but never into old wood •Prune wisteria – leave any long stems that you want to encourage to extend the framework of the plant, cut back completely any stems which are totally unwanted and cut back all other stems to two or three buds on each stem •Clear fallen leaves affected by blackspot from around roses Prune roses which aren’t repeat flowering once all flowers have finished At La Petite Pépinière we shall be offering gardening courses again during the autumn months, the exact programme will be decided soon and details will be on the website – www.lapetitepepiniere.com – The Nursery – Gardening Courses. For further information contact Gill Pound at La Petite Pépinière de Caunes (shrubs and perennials, ornamental grasses, unusual plants and plants for dry climates, garden advice and consultation), 21, Avenue de la Montagne Noire, 11160, Caunes-Minervois. Tel: 04 68 78 43 81, email Gill@lapetitepepiniere.com www.lapetitepepiniere.com

W O R M S

Open March to November 10h – 18h Fridays and Saturdays, 10h – 12h Sundays, or by appointment – just phone or email to fix another time. 12

in 1681 there were no trees planted on the banks. From 1730 Mulberry bushes, fruit trees and Poplars were planted. The Plane trees we know today on the canal and throughout southern France are an Asian/ American hybrid created in Oxford in the 16th century. The trees were imported in vast numbers into France from about 1810, partially for roadside planting providing shade for Napoleons marching armies, some for shade in the villages and towns and 40000 to line the banks of the Canal du Midi. So why the recent demise? Once again an accidental introduction, this time of the fungus on infected ammunition boxes from the eastern United States at the end of the Second World War is almost certainly the culprit! On the Canal du Midi, replanting will be with a greater diversity of trees but will include, I am delighted to say, a fungus resistant strain of the Plane tree- Vallis Clausa. A solution produced, as with Phylloxera, by researchers in Montpellier. The cost of the operation on the canal alone will be in excess of 200 million euros and will be part- funded by donations from businesses and individuals. If anyone wishes to make a donation please e- mail: valerie.mura@developpmentdurable.gouv.fr

I first heard about worm composting from our waste collector Sictom and was curious to know how it worked. With a lombri-composter it’s the worms that do all the A work, you just “harvest” the end products. d I bought my wormery from Vers la Terre in Pezenas, r who offer a short start-up demonstration. i The installation is small enough to keep in the kitchen, e n the pantry or the garage. Surprisingly, it doesn’t smell bad at all. In fact, when n e you open the lid to add scraps, it smells like leaf mould or woodlands. Over 2 years I’ve obtained around 30 kilos K of rich compost that I use for all my plantings. It’s great e for adding nutrients to the soil, as well as providing a s base for new plantings. In addition, the “wormery” t provides several litres of worm ‘juice’, a powerful e addition to the watering can. The start-up cost is low, it’s r eco-friendly and the worms provide an on-going fascination, especially for kids.


Good Be To Young

Listening to right now: CALL ME MAYBE - Carly Rae Jepson WE ARE YOUNG - fun. featuring Janelle Monae DAYS GO BY - The Offspring I DON’T REMEMBER - Peter Gabriel

L’Asinerie aux petits Sabots

HT young journalist Mai visits the farm dedicated to donkeys Aux Petits Sabots nestled in the heart of the vineyards of St Chinian, near the little village of Berlou and discovers some little known facts about donkeys…

program of L’Anes de Provence. Pure bred donkeys are becoming rarer due to careless breeding, so Aux Petits Sabots are dedicated to preserving this breed. They are one of seven recognized breeds in France, with a recognizable black cross marking at the base of their necks. It is very important to Dorothée that all her young donkeys go to irst off when you see a donkey (un âne) all you want to do is cuddle good homes. Prospective it, and this is exactly what Dorothée Bricks the owner is here for. owners are invited to take Aux Petits Sabot is open for free visits to see the donkeys, donkey part in a stage to learn about trekking in the beautiful surrounds, as well guided tours every their care and Dorothée visits Saturday where you can learn all about caring for donkeys and have a their new homes to make sure go at making donkey milk soap. For children between the ages of 4-10, that the facilities are you will also have the opportunity to ride one. suitable. One of her stipulations is The donkeys seemed very gentle and Dorothée explained the stages that, like most herbivores, donkeys are herd of training them to me. Female donkeys mature quicker than males, animals and are not natural loners, so the new owners must have but neither gender will be used for riding until they are about 6 years another herbivore, such as a horse or even a goat, so that the donkey old and have been has company. exposed to lots of On the property there is a beautiful roulette, which is a bit like a gypsy different situations. caravan, which is available as a gite. But if you don’t want to stay on There are some the farm you can hire a donkey to carry your luggage and go on treks, unfortunate with accommodation organized for you along the way. This is expressions that wonderful too for families with little children, who can ride along have been coined without having to be carried. which promote the You can also buy all sorts of soaps and creams made from the lait idea that donkeys d’annesse (donkey milk). I learnt that donkey milk, which is clear are not very bright, and odorless, is very good for treating different medical conditions, like the ‘donkey hat’ particularly bronchial, as it’s much better for the digestive system. that Victorian The nicest thing about Aux Petits Sabots is that all the donkeys are children were very happy as Dorothy thinks the world of them, she does anything to made to wear if make sure they’re content. they behaved in a certain way or didn’t do well at their studies. But au So, if you’re in need of a remedy, something creamy to wash your contraire, they are actually very smart. Just as a 2 week old donkey face with every morning, a hike without weight on your back, or demonstrated when I was there, by getting out of the paddock all by maybe a cute animal picture for your facebook page this is the place himself because he had worked out when the electric fencing to keep to come!! And for the perfect birthday party for all you animal lovers, them inside was on or not. Did you know that there are no specific you can celebrate with Dorothée and her gentle friends. medical treatments produced for donkeys? Vets have to use controlled For more information: www.auxpetitssabots.com Aux Petits Sabots, RD 177, doses of horse medications. 34360 BERLOU An important part of Dorothée and her partner’s work is a breeding

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ESKA, an association for English-speaking children, was founded by Victoria Orange-Sibra in September 2010. It was created to provide an environment for children growing up in the region to be able to speak English. The group has attracted around 40 children so far and a wide range of nationalities. They have all sorts of different families coming, from all over the world; South Africa, Canada, Australia, Scotland, Brazil and Poland, to name but a few. The families may have lived in the region for a while or may have just moved here; however the common denominator is to encourrage their children to practise their English outside of the family unit.

The group meets each month on a Saturday afternoon. During the colder months they have a room in the village of Lunel-Viel (34400) and organise a variety of different activities together, such as yoga, art workshops, a carnival and puppet shows. As soon as the warmer days arrive they organise outdoor activities, a picnic in the park with an Easter egg hunt, a beach party, nature walk..... ESKA is relaunching in September. If you’re an English-speaking family and would like to share in different activities, then don’t hesitate to come along to the next event on 22 September! Membership is €15 per child, but for families with several children the fee is usually capped at €30. To find out more visit the ESKA website at:www.englishspeakingkidsassociation.fr. To speak directly with the association’s president Victoria Orange-Sibra you can call 04 67 82 36 62 or email her at: vickyorange@hotmail.com.

12 August On this Day in 1981 - IBM unveiled its first PC 13


Referendum What happens if the UK say ‘non’ to the EU?

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t’s what many in Britain have been yearning for – after all, the French have already had two, the Irish nine! The Dutch, Finns, Danes, the Spanish have all been given the chance to express their opinion about Europe in a referendum. Now, at last, perhaps Britain’s turn is approaching. In July last year the EU Act 2011 received the Royal nod. It states that if either of the fundamental European treaties need to be changed, there must be a referendum in the UK. It looks as if the measures currently being prepared to control the euro crisis – a banking union and fiscal supervision, with teeth – will need such changes. But even if they don’t, David Cameron has to decide whether Britain is going to be subject to this new monetary authority. If the answer is yes, our highly successful financial services sector may be emasculated. Many believe that is what France and Germany want. If not, the City remains independent but Britain loses its place at the table, so losing voice and vote. Once again Britain has skilfully manoeuvred itself into an unassailable lose/lose situation. All this has increased pressure for a referendum, both in the press and at Westminster. If a straight in-out referendum were held today, a recent YouGov poll found 50% of British would vote to leave, 25% to stay – so although this is, for the moment, hypothetical, I want to look at what would happen to us, the 150,000 or so Brits who have jumped ship and opted to live in France, if Britain left Europe. Would France support us? Probably not. At present we are tolerated by the French because we are EU citizens – if that were no longer the case we would become true foreigners, like the Americans and everyone else. As in Britain, some foreigners are more welcome than others. First we would lose an automatic right to live here – that is, we would be able to keep the house, we would still have the privilege of paying the Taxes Foncières on it, but we would not be able to live in it all year round unless we conformed to the increasingly rigorous French legislation on foreigners. To stay in France for more than 3 months we would need a longterm visa, issued only by the embassy in our home country. In normal circumstances that takes a couple of months, but with 150,000 applications, circumstances would not be normal. Neither does “long-term” on a visa mean forever. There is another, vital rung on the administrative ladder which we as foreigners would then have to attempt: getting a Carte de résident or, if fully retired, a Carte de séjour retraité. Neither is particularly easy. When I moved here in 1989 every British resident needed a Carte

YES NO

YES NO

YES NO

YES

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de séjour, even though the UK had been in Europe for 13 years. First I had to prove my financial situation (only bank statements would do – mine was passed round to anyone who happened to be in the Mairie at the time). I had to prove full UK health insurance and that I was medically fit. This involved going to Marseille to the infamous Immigration Centre, standing in a reception hall shoulder-to-shoulder with perhaps 30 Europeans and 120 North and West Africans, and being told to pee into a plastic coffee cup. After a fifteenminute shouting match with officials, women were granted special dispensation to use the staff toilets. Once the pee in our coffee cups had passed a litmus test, there was a full medical examination. This time individually. I asked the doctor what would happen if I had, say, Aids, cancer and diabetes. Did only the healthy have the right to live in France? That would depend on the tribunal, he hedged, then added: and your bank account. When my carte finally arrived, Interdit de travailler was firmly stamped on the back. That was 23 years ago, a lot has changed but even today non-EU foreigners still have to prove financial independence. And pass a medical examination. With a carte de resident, valid 10 years, you have the right to work and enjoy most benefits of life in France. Non-EU foreigners’ right to vote is currently a hot topic, as things stand we would lose even our rights to vote in local elections. But more importantly we would lose what remains of our status. If the British people decided in a referendum to separate from Europe I believe the French in particular would feel deep anger at what they already see as our habitual selfishness and perfidy. Our lives here would change at many levels – thanks to a decision made at Westminster, where our opinions no longer count. The best way round the administrative hassle and the loss of status – and win back the right to vote – would be to get French nationality.

Tim King 2012

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The Tree DwellersFor nearly 8 weeks a group of young people have been living in

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few days ago as I was riding my bicycle along the Esplanade, the well know public garden in downtown Montpellier, when a young guy hailed me. Christophe introduces himself: “I’m one of the tree dwellers”. I look up at the tree beside us and I see 3 bamboo platforms in the branches on one tree and another platform constructed in the one next to it. I discover that a group of young people have been living there since May 12th! Because of my traditional upbringing my first thoughts are of toilets and hygiene facilities. How do they manage? Well, they’re not stuck on to the tree; they climb down and visit their many friends who live in the city and access their bathrooms and toilets. Generally they are not locals. They come from other parts of France where they have housing. Most of them are students on holiday or workers on leave, eager to join the “tree movement”. There are no more than a dozen in the tree, with a considerable turn-over among them. There are a group of homeless people who have joined them at the bottom of the tree. Why settle up in a tree, a strange idea isn’t it? “It’s for the sake of freedom and ecology, for the future. Life without money, just with bamboo, is lighter, less restricting”. Christophe tells me about “them”, the system, and the local authorities which sees them as a nuisance: “They want to forbid us to live this way despite it bringing us happiness. Why is happiness repressed? If they think we are causing a disturbance, it means they fear what we’re doing here. Money is not the point and it really scares them.” They call their movement Réelle démocratie* - an offshoot of the Indignant movement or Les Indignés which was inspired by the book Indignons Nous by Stéphane Hessel and to some extent by the revolution in Tunisia. It started in Spain and has spread throughout many countries, including France and the USA (under the name Occupy Wall Street). Nevertheless a number of the tree dwellers say that they only represent themselves; they are like “free electrons”. Everything appears quite informal. Christophe explains: “We like organization, and we like so much disorganization too”. You could call them utopists, they are romantic and futurist, they hope to spread a non-violent social movement. They say they

trees in downtown Montpellier. Romantic and futurist, hope to spread a non-violent social movement.

*they

are starting ‘creative resistance’ against the ‘system’, and for sure this rings a bell for many people. In the middle of the worst economic crisis since WWII they are trying to build a different perspective when they say, “Time is not money” and “Smile, you are loved”. Troublemakers? The ‘tree dwellers’ frequently climb down and stand at the bottom of the trunk to talk to passers-by, and passers-by talk to each other – for them a positive result of their actions. “They open the door to dream,” says a lady in an interview by montpellier-journal.fr. Officials think another way: that their presence will create insecurity, especially during the Estivales (the wine and food festival on the Esplanade every Friday night). It would seem that an artificial gulf has been created between them and the wine growers who sell their products there. At the opening ceremony for the Estivales the officials called them “troublemakers”. The “troublemakers” asked for a right of reply, which has been denied. The mayor Madame Mandroux told me “They disturb the wine growers, ask them”. So I did. “Those young bastards prevent us from working”, one of their spokesman tells me. But it’s not the opinion of a young employee working at a wine-stall just by the tree. “They don’t bother us; we are bothered because the city police have asked us to move to another place”. Right, they could throw bottles and debris from their platform down to the ground and hurt somebody! Nevertheless, since they have set up above the ground no incident has been recorded. A young female student I met at the conversation exchange organized by the English bookshop has a different point of view: “Coming back from my work late at night every day I walk along the Esplanade. Since they have been there I feel much safer. I know nice people are around”. Insecurity may have been but a pretext to chase them away; sadly the days of the tree-dwellers were numbered. On a few occasions the municipal police harassed them using excessive violence. For instance in the early morning of June 29th, police dropped the food and the bags of the homeless people who mix with them in a garbage truck. Then came the last day. On July 6th a special police unit (GIPN, Groupe d’intervention de la police nationale) came from Marseille to expel them. More than 50 policemen equipped with fireman’s ladders; a huge deployment of force against 8 non-violent tree-dwellers. The final outcome is that the tree dwellers have been fined 11 euros each for infringing a municipal by-law. They say they will go back to the trees, here or elsewhere…. Words and Images: Patrice Victor Journalistes sans Frontières 15


Days Out

Some of the wonderful places that are available in the Hérault and occasionally beyond.........

Saint-Guilhem-le-Désert

The Water Wheels of Cazilhac

Saint-Guilhem-le-Désert

The Water Wheels of Cazilhac

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oted the most beautiful town in Hérault, Saint-Guilhem-leDésert (Désert in this context means isolated) is an ancient, small town enclosed in the deep valley of the Gellone river – which has impeded any development which might have spoiled the town. It is a virtual time capsule which dates from when the Abbey was founded in 806. Every vista holds something unique for the eye in this mediaeval village which was an important stopping point on the Chemin de St Jacques, a pilgrim route to Santiago de Compostella in Spain. Both the Abbey of Gellone, in the very heart of the town, and the nearby Pont du Diable were designated UNESCO World Heritages sites in 1999. And it is just as well it is now protected, as a part of the cloister of the monastery was moved to The Cloisters Museum of Manhattan in the 1930’s

ituated in the haute vallée de l’Hérault between the massif de la Séranne, Cazilhac is known for its giant waterwheels built to irrigate the plain. Driving from the south along the D122 is lovely; at times it feels as if you have the road and the sweeping limestone countryside all to yourself. There are six large, wooden water wheels covered in moss along a canal which is supplied with water from the Vis. The Water Wheels date from the end of the 18th century. The fast moving stream below turns the wheel slowly and the buckets suspended around the wheel scoop water up and this is then discharged into the tank alongside. The stored water is then used for irrigation.

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LEGGETT

Le Lait d’Anesse

he hydrating and regenerative virtues of Le Lait d’Anesse or donkey milk have been known throughout history. Cleopatra and Nefertiti were both known to bathe in donkey milk. Later, the King of France, François the First, ravaged by war and excess followed the advice of a doctor from Constantinople and adopted a regime of donkey milk, the results of which were said to be miraculous and gave him back his health. Donkey milk was used until the end of the 19th century in France as a source of nourishment; lactating Jennies were kept in hospitals for maternity wards. Donkey milk has exceptional properties (acids, essential fats, vitamins A,E,C…) and is perfect for problem and dry skin. At Aux Petits Sabots all of the

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donkey milk products are bio and made using pure ingredients. They produce a range of fifteen soaps, which are made with bio vegetable oils to which a minimum of 7% donkey milk is then added. The Aux Petits Sabots range also includes face and body creams, shaving products and bath salts. Prices start from 4 euros. The soap is the creamiest and frothiest we have ever tried! Products are available through their on-line shop: www.cosmetiques-savons-laitanesse.auxpetitssabots.com or you can visit the Ainerie directly: RD 177, 34360 Berlou

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Thai Massage

www.frenchestateagents.com 0800 900 324 • Helps arthritis and back pain • Helps tone the body, strengthens joints and fights diseases, including chronic joint problems • Prevents illnesses and alleviates degenerative diseases • Slows the aging process Mental Benefits of Thai Massage • Improves outlook towards life; builds an emotional balance • Helps with concentration and creativity/ Mind and body concentration The massage takes place on a futon, with the client fully dressed in comfortable, loose clothing.

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hai massage was discovered by Buddhist monks who brought it to Southeast Asia from India. The massage comprises a combination of Yoga stretches and rocking movements, acupressure and palm pressure to provide an all over body massage for health and wellbeing. Hot herbal compresses are often used to alleviate muscle soreness. The practitioner follows the ‘sen’ lines (similar to meridians) and applies pressure in varying degrees, in this way releasing energy into the organs and muscles of the body, unblocking tension and helping the individual to become more flexible. Some of the Physical Benefits of Thai Massage: • Helps detoxification and boosts immune system • Increases blood circulation, lowers blood pressure • Aids muscle relaxation; increases flexibility, increases mobility • Improves breathing • Improves posture, balance and dissolves energy blockages • Improves athletic performance

Neal’s Yard arrives in the Hérault

One day ‘Introduction to Thai Massage’ course, October 2012 For more information go to www.languedocretreats.com or contact Susannah on: 06 52 75 24 45

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érault resident Pam Kay is one of the first people to be selling Neal’s Yard Remedies (NYR) in France. The award-winning organic products for the face and body are famous for their natural ingredients, eco-friendly philosophy and little blue bottles. The company was founded in 1981 by Romy Fraser, with the well-known shop in London’s Covent Garden. Thirty years later they are still one of the primary producers of sustainable beauty and well-being. NYR is launching in France in September and Pam 17

is excited to be one of the first people selling it here. She’s already had a great response from people who are familiar with Neal’s Yard products, and she is always on the lookout for new people to join her network marketing team. For Pam, selling NYR combines the things that she loves – socialising and meeting new people, making some extra money selling gorgeous products, and having plenty of time off to enjoy the Languedoc sun. You can contact Pam for more information on 06 42 15 96 31 or at pamkay.personal@gmail.com


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What’s On Where 14 August FONTES FETE LOCALE FONTES 15.00 : Concours de pétanque local doublette au boulodrome 20h00 : Boeuf à la broche sur la place (service 20h00 précises) Permanences inscriptions : le 26 juillet et le 02 août, de 18h00 à 20h00 à la Mairie, ensuite si place disponible, par téléphone au 06.81.57.63.52 .06.81.57.63.52. Taris : 16 Euros adultes et 8 Euros enfants Aucune inscription ne sera prise en mairie 22h00 : Bal avec l’orchestre Carnet de bal 14 August SAINT PARGOIRE « Saint Pargoire Plage » sur la Place R.Salengro Contact Mairie : 04 67 98 70 01 04 67 98 70 01 15 August OLARGUES - 16ème Estivale de la Bio Marché biologique, balade historique et gourmande, animations musicales, atelier jardinage bio, spectacles, conférences... 15 August FONTES Matinée : Fête de l’assomption : récital d’orgue et de chants sacres à l’église en l’honneur de la Sainte Vierge 15h00 : Concours de pétanque régional doublette au boulodrome 15h00 : Course cycliste, cadets et minimes, Challenge Pascal organisé par le Vélo Club des Cheminots Biterrois. Départs et arrivées Boulevard Jules Ferry 18h00 : Loto sur la place organise par le Volcan Fontesol 22h00 : Bal avec la disco mobile ‘Evasion’ 15 August Palavas les Flots • 10h/22h Tournée d’été TF1 : Animation et concerts - Plage de l’Hôtel de Ville • 21h Tournoi de Joutes – Canal 16 August Arboras Church “My Name is Margaret Morris” English Theatre By Stuart Hopps “In this enchanting show, Stuart Hopps, one of Britain’s finest Choreographers for stage and screen, presents a personal homage to celebrate the life and pioneering work of Margaret Morris, founder of the MARGARET MORRIS MOVEMENT System. In an instant, adopting a soft rich voice, eloquent diction and graceful poise, Stuart Hopps transforms into his character “My name is Margaret Morris” www.edinburghguide.com/festival/2010/ edinburghfringe/mynameismargaretmorrisreview-622 Free Entry The show will be followed by a tasting of the wines of the Domaine d’Auphilhac

For further information : www.concertarboras.com 04 67 88 66 09 16 August FONTES 15h00 : Concours de pétanque régional doublette au boulodrome 19h00 : Apéritif dansant 22h00 : Bal avec l ’orchestre Paul SELMER Pendant trois jours manèges, stands, jeux.... 16 August Palavas les Flots Jeudi • 16h30 / 19h entraînements de l’école municipale de joutes sur le canal – Renseignements 04 67 07 73 33 17 August PONT DU DIABLE / ANIANE Soirée repasconcert à la Brasserie du Terroir. Tarif : 20€ Menu tout compris. Sur réservation : 06 89 61 76 82 / 04 99 61 76 82 www.brasserieduterroir.sitew.com 17 August ANIANE Marché nocturne « Arts et Terroir » de 18h30 à 22h30 sur la Place Etienne Sanier. Contact : 04 67 57 01 40 17 August SAINT ANDRE DE SANGONIS Concert avec « Antoine Garrido, chante Barbara, Brel,» 21h30 sur la place du village, gratuit. 04 67 57 00 60 04 67 57 00 60 18 August FONTES 21h00 : concert É l’église Saint-Hippolyte avec ANA CRUZ, un groupe féminin composé de 5 jeunes femmes qui chantent des chants polyphoniques de l ‘Europe de l’Est. Entre : 10 Euros. Billetterie sur place 18 August FESTIVAL IN THE VALLEY OF THE ORB 8:45 pm - Priory of St. Julien HOBOKEN TRIO (Saskia Lethiec, violin - Eric Picard, cello - Jerome Granjon, piano) Haydn Campbell-Howes, Mendelssohn Sunday, August 19 - 20h45-Priory of Saint-Julien Mathieu Névéol & NOMAD lib ‘ (Mathieu Névéol, violin - Augustine Humeau, bassoon - Benjamin Valette, guitar - Mathias Lopez, bass) 18/19 August LE POUGET Festival « Circul’Arts » : musique et scènes de rues avec déambulation en fanfare, cirque, théâtre, concerts, marché paysan, artisanat et produits du terroir, vide-grenier, visite guidée de la circulade, Contact : 04 67 96 61 06 www.le-pouget.com 19 August Languedoc Select Annual Summer Lunch Our third Mediterranean Summer Lunch will 18

take place as usual at Domaine de la Clapière in Montagnac on Sunday August 19th. There will be a selection of excellent vignerons on hand, a great summer buffet provided by Ken and Alison Miller, and music provided by the fantastic Teena Lyle, who has spent twenty years as part of Van Morrison’s band, and who is now living in the region. The day starts from 11am and we will welcome you with an apéritif. The cost is €25 per person, including an apéritif and the buffet. Please email us at info@languedoc-select.com to reserve your places or to request more info. 19 August SAINT SATURNIN DE LUCIAN « Accords Mets et Vins » au Domaine Virgile Joly. Dégustation de 8 bouchées/verrines 19 August Le Pouget Visite guidée du village dans le cadre du Festival Circul’Art – RDV à 10h30 devant la Fontaine Sur réservation auprès de l’Office de Tourisme : 04 67 57 58 83 et 04 99 61 73 01 www.saintguilhem-valleeherault.fr Inscriptions obligatoires : départ assuré pour 5 pers minimum. 21 August 8:45 pm - Priory of St. Julien Mandolin Quartet 21 August 8:45 pm - Church of St. Martin of the tree CELLO RECITAL - PIANO Bruno Philippe, cello - Jean-Baptiste Doulcet, piano 22 August Prieuré de Grandmont 21h - Philippe Cornier Guitariste Classique 12€ Gratuit moins de12 ans www.philippecornier.com 22 August SAINT GUILHEM LE DESERT Concert d’orgue dans le cadre du Festival « Les Heures d’orgue » avec Lionel Bernard (Anduze) : Musique pour le Magnificat. Abbaye de Gellone à 19h30. Tarif : 5€ Contact : www.fredericmunoz.org 23 August MURVIEL LES BÉZIERS Église Saint-Jean-Baptiste 18 h Chantadors de trobar postmaster@festival-troubadoursartroman.fr 23 to 28 August SETE - Fête de la Saint-Louis 270ème édition de la fête patronale de Sète avec tournois de joutes, spectacles de rues et bodégas.


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What’s On Where 23, 25 to 30 August MONTPELLIER Les Nuits d’O 6 nuits, 6 thèmes, 6 ambiances à savourer sous les étoiles au Domaine d’O (musique & cinéma).

le service municipal des sports, ouvert aux marcheurs et aux coureurs. Toute la matinée, marché du terroir et animation pour les enfants. Repas sur réservation à partir de 12h. Contact et réservation : 04 67 57 04 69

24August SAINT ANDRE DE SANGONIS « Foire des Vendanges » dès 8h sur la place, foire et marché du terroir / 15h : concours de pétanque / 21h30 : sur la place, « Samedi Soir en musique » avec sosies et chanteurs, puis DJ. Contact : 04 67 57 00 60

28 August Palavas les Flots • 16h30 / 19h entraînements de l’école municipale de joutes sur le canal – Renseignements 04 67 07 73 33 • 21h “Duo de Harpes à 2 voix” par Isabelle ISSIER et Yvon LEQUELLEC – Musiques Baroques et Celtiques – Entrée libre et libre participation – Eglise Saint Pierre – Plus d’infos : 06 30 25 18 57 ou 04 67 42 01 39 – ass.apamc@sfr.fr

24 August 8:45 pm - Priory of St. Julien RAPHAEL QUARTET 24 August CAUSSES-VEYRAN - Église Notre-Dame de la Purification Chantadors de trobar Renseignements Office Intercommunal de Tourisme des Pechs 04 67 35 90 07 Réservations Trob’Art Productions 09 72 95 90 46 06 19 10 92 89 postmaster@festival-troubadoursartroman.fr 25 August Priory of St. Julien - 8:45 pm RAPHAEL QUARTET Schubert (Quintet in C major D. 956) ... 26 August GIGNAC Rassemblement de Harley Davidson (Brescoudos) dans la matinée sur l’Esplanade. 26 August SAINT ANDRE DE SANGONIS « 4ème Foulées Vigneronnes » organisées par

Jane&Jenny Jane Hansare

30, 31 August, 01 September Palavas les Flots • Championnat de France “Ocean Racing” organisé par le club Palavas Kayak de Mer – Compétition de kayak de mer et de pirogues polynésiennes, animations environnement et nautiques – Mise à l’eau plage rive droite – Plus d’infos : 06 20 83 28 61 – contact@oceanracingpalavas2012.com –www.palavaskayakdemer.com 02 September St Pons de Mauchien Midi Cricket Club’s President’s Day Midi Cricket Club, a well-established cricket club in the Hérault, will hold their annual President’s Day on Sunday the 2nd of September. President’s Day is a mid-season day of fun that has taken place at St Pons de Mauchien for the last 5 years. Held at the cricket ground behind the Marie, the idyllic setting

has proven a successful attraction for cricket fans, families and curious locals. The day kicks off with an open pétanque tournament and finishes with a free to all cricket game. Other highlights include a Ken Miller barbeque from midday, wine tasting from local winemakers, a children’s cricket session and stalls from local artists. Whether you are an old friend of MCC or a first timer, President’s Day is a great opportunity to eat, drink, socialise and see some cricket. For further details please visit the club’s website. www.midicricket.com 07 September Eglise de Balaruc Les Bains 21h -Philippe Cornier Guitariste Classique 12€ Gratuit mons de 12 ans www.philippecornier.com 11 September dans l’église Saint-Paul de Clermontl’Hérault 18h Le 4e « Festival Musiques et Passions »

If you have an event that you would like to have published in The Herault times or on the website please send details of your event and a hi-es 200dpi image to: info@theheraulttimles.com www.vinsportif.com Tel 06 48 19 93 24

For a full listing of What’s On please visit

Un Trail pour les Gourmets de la Course et du Vin

19-21 octobre 2012

Jenny Curra

www.heaultwhatson.com Deux aquarellistes au Mas Belles-Eaux Du 5 au 29 septembre 2012 9h-12h, 14h-18h sauf le dimanche Vernissage le 7 septembre à 18.00 heures Route de Roujan, Chemin de Mountade

Pic Saint Loup, Hérault (20 mins au nord de Montpellier)

Soyez les bienvenus www.mas-belleseaux.com

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Appassionata International Choir Adrienne Kester, a member of the Appassionata International Choir, tells the HT about Appassionata and what being a member means to its diverse membership. challenged. And I like rehearsals in the evening, as I work during the day”. A significant feature of the choir is the diversity of music, which makes for entertaining concerts that audiences all over the region appreciate. Roger Munns chooses the choral pieces to suit the range of voices and often does his special jazzy arrangements of some modern songs. This diverse content has given Appassionata its reputation for being a serious and professional sounding choral group. The annual program includes four or five concerts during the year, in local venues, some for charity. Last year Appassionata joined together with several other choirs for two special concerts given in the churches of St Guillem and Anian. “Church concerts give the wonderful resonance to the voices,” says Bernie, another member. For more information about Appassionata visit their website: www.choraleappassionata.com

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ppassionata is a truly international choir, with members from France, Belgium, USA, Canada, Norway, Holland, and the UK. Membership is growing, but varies depending on the availability of everyone, as many members travel back and forth from their home country during the year. “We need a good size membership to allow for the occasional absences, and mostly we need more basses and tenors,” says Roger Munns, the musical director and professional musician, who is also well known in the region for his jazz piano performances. “Our common rehearsal language is English, but the choir’s repertoire includes music in several different languages,” says Rhona Goujon, the founder and Secretary of Appassionata. The choir is based in Bassan, l’Hérault. Members, who come from places as far away as Lodève and Cessenon- sur-Orb, have joined Appassionata for a variety of reasons, but all share a love of singing. Judith, who lives near Lodève, has a 45minute drive to rehearsals every week. Why does she do it when there are several ‘chorales’ closer to her? For Judith, “The main reason is the professionalism of the singing. Appassionata is made up of people who want to sing well, even though not all members read music.” In addition, she loves the friendly atmosphere, the international mix and the humour that filters through the rehearsals. Stig, from Sweden, enjoys “The social and networking side too”. Marie is one of our several French members, who joined the choir “just for fun, and the challenge”. She enjoys the variety of languages of the song choices and “the discipline of the choir keeps me

If you are interested in joining the choir please contact Rhona Goujon on 04 67 36 05 83. The new session starts on 4th September 2012. Roger invites would-be singers to visit, listen and join in; or come and hear the choir perform at the Bassan Matin des Associations, 9th September, 9h-12h.

‘Composting’ your tickets

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he French transport system relies on passengers verifying their tickets on or before joining a train or a tram. Insert the ticket the right way around and a gratifying clunk validates your ticket to prevent you from using it again! The French term used is ‘composter’. ‘Composting’ seems an odd word which has nothing to do with a ‘compost heap’ in this context. It is an ancient forbearer connected to pilgrimage. It had been known for pilgrims – who could work off some of their sins by doing a pilgrimage – to cheat. To convince your parish priest you had actually 20

followed the route, it was necessary to have the local clergy in the Abbeys you visited en route to sign your “pass” in order to verify that you had indeed followed the correct pilgrimage route. Many pilgrim churches have a large porch with seats down each side, which were constructed so that the pilgrims could keep out of the sun or the rain whilst they waited for the priest to compost their “passes”. Thus, an aspect of the practice remains with us today, only rather it is to show the ticket inspector that your ticket is valid – or as we now say – composted.


What’s in a a name.... Sue Hicks talks about

taking its name from the oasis battle of the Free French troops, a maquis group ‘Bir Hakeim’ was formed and became known for its audacious attacks (which led to reprisals on locals), its mobility, structure and training and sadly too for tragedies. One of these took place in Douch outside Lamalou les Bains in the Hérault. Whether betrayed or insufficiently discreet, the Germans came to know of the location of the group in the tiny hamlet high in

Bir Hakeim S

eventy years ago French people were searching in their atlases to find Bir Hakeim, an oasis in the Libyan Desert. They were crowding round their radios listening secretly for news, heard through crackly jammed lines, of their fellow countrymen fighting the Germans. In the blistering heat, short of water, outnumbered 10:1 and continually bombarded, the Free French forces lead by General Koenig held out against German and Italian soldiers led by General Rommel. Between 27 May and 11 June 1942 the French were surrounded, yet refused to surrender. Running out of food and ammunition, under the cover of darkness, the French broke out. General Koenig’s mistress, an Englishwoman, drove his car and reported 11 bullet holes in the vehicle. During the siege and the escape, over a thousand men lost their lives and many were taken prisoner, but by delaying the enemy the French had enabled the allies to retreat and regroup. This battle marked the beginning of France’s military renaissance following the catastrophic defeat of 1940. General de Gaulle telegraphed General Koenig, “Tell your troops that France is watching you and that you are our pride.” The following year, numbers drawn to active resistance against German occupation grew when STO (service travail obligatoire), a call up of young men to go to work in Germany, was introduced. Many fled to the hills and hid among the maquis, the Corsican name for high ground covered in thick vegetation. Proudly

Associations Day

In a town near you in September

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ould you like to join a group, learn a new skill or perhaps volunteer, but don’t know where to look or what to do? Associations Day is a really good way for you to discover what is available in your area – whether a sporting activity, a voluntary help group, a campaign against bull fighting, games, hobbies, languages, arts, to name but a few... Every September, usually over a weekend – either on the Saturday or the Sunday - many towns hold their annual Associations Fair, which provides an opportunity for local associations to entice you to join their group. The largest event is in Montpellier where over a thousand associations take stands to present their group activities – last year there were reported to have been 100,000 visitors.

The joy of these fairs, which require no commitment from visitors, is the opportunity to browse and see what is on offer - from groups which are dedicated to looking after lost cats, through to Tarot card reading, with everything in between. The musical associations give the events a buzz as they take it in turns to play a wide range of music – some of which is of a very high standard. A yogi at the Beziers event a year or so ago was equally entrancing; he sat so incredibly still on his table that for a while you could have been fooled into thinking he was in fact a statue, until he flicked away a fly. Whilst that may have been a serene moment, not far away the anti-Frackers, the bio followers and the political stands rang with dispute and argument. The energy of the 21

the hills. On the night of 10 September 1943, without alerting the lookouts, the Germans surrounded the group, killed two and took four prisoners who were later executed. The 41 survivors escaped into the dark and regrouped in the Aveyron. The memorial stele just outside the church proudly commemorates this event and names those who lost their lives. A second major incident took place in May 1944 when the Maquis was apparently betrayed to the occupying Germans at La Parade in the Lozère and 33 men were killed and 27 taken prisoner before being executed. Regrouping and relocating, the Maquis Bir Hakeim assembled at Moureze outside Clermont l’Hérault and was actively involved in harassing the retreating German troops and in the liberation of Montpellier in August 1944. Just off the main road between Clermont and Bedarieux, on the way to the village of Moureze, there is a calm and moving garden of remembrance which celebrates with identical crosses the 143 members of the Maquis Bir Hakeim who died in combat. Bir Hakeim is celebrated on street names, on memorials, as well as with a Paris metro stop. Controversy continues to this day as to the significance of the battle and of the value of the acts of sabotage and attacks carried out by the Maquis resistance groups. However, the real contribution they undoubtedly made was to the morale and pride of the French who began to believe that they were showing the world that they were not completely defeated. groups who showcase their work is engaging. More impressive however is the multifarious range of activities available across the Hérault and the dedication and drive of members inviting you to sample what they have to offer. Many of the departments’ smaller towns have events too. Dates should be checked at the local Mairie. Dates for Hérault Associations Fairs known at publication:

2 September – Beziers and Baillargues 9 September – Montpellier and Clermont L’Hérault


www.l-artiste.com

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elcome to the art pages of The Herault Times.

All articles are taken from the bi-lingual Visual Arts magazine L’Artiste or the L’Hérault Art website. Please visit us at www.l-artiste.com or www.lheraultart.com If you have an exhibition or art event and would like to see it on these pages please drop us a line at info@theheraulttimes.com. All exhibitions are online at www.lheraultart.com

Abstract - Does it really still have a place?

Abstract

- 1979

art is a p

roduct of

the untale

nted, sold

by the un

principle

I

had the pleasure this week of having a discussion about Abstract Art in all its guises. The conversation was based on a statement by my host that Abstract Expressionism was founded in America and I put forward the case for Germany in the 1920s. The discussion moved from Robert Coates using it in the mid-40s’ to my preferred stab at it being used in Germany in a magazine (Der Sturm) in the 1920s. What we both agreed on was that it was A Barr talking about Kandinsky in the mid-20s that really started the wagon rolling. So then the discussion went into the point of Abstract at all. So I threw the big guns into the fray, Kandinsky, Pollock, Kline, de Kooning, Sterne, Rauschenberg, Vasarely, Rothko, Braque, Mondrian, Picasso........(Impressive eh, I was feeling very proud). And then he said, “So which discipline (laughed at this point) of abstract are we talking about?” “Um, well, all of them. Obviously there are the big three,” I calmly said. “Cubism, Neoplasticism and Abstract Impressionism but really you are just nit picking.” “Oh right. Shall we add Bauhaus et al into the conversation? Don’t you see, abstract art is boring! It was fun, it was interesting but then it just branched off into whatever everybody wanted to do at the time. There has been nothing new in this genre since 1918.” “Ok,” said I, “but let’s just slow down a minute. Are you telling me that you have never looked at a painting by any of the above mentioned artists and liked it in any way?” “Quite the contrary, but look at the facts. Rauschenberg went to pop art and his obituary stated he was that. Mondrian had to coin his own movement, Neoplasticism and the main topic of his work is the thickness of the black lines. MoMA is accused to this day of promoting Abstract Impressionism and in fact single handedly created the market for the American Abstract Impressionists...before that no-one bought the damn things.” “Do I need to go on? Abstract was fun, it was an excuse and now it is boring and has been for 80 to 90 years.” “I can’t agree,” I said and then started to mention more and more wonderful painters and the influence they have brought to bear on today’s artist and then suddenly I stopped talking. I had mentioned the wonderful Wyndham Lewis and I knew I was doomed......... “Hold on a moment.....” And I knew what was coming next........ And here it is for you to decide, extracts written in 1940 by the man himself.

d to the u

tterly bew

ildered. A

l Capp 19

09

though it made a great stir at the and kicking. This article is a sort of obituary notice. It is written to announce the death of “abstract art.” At last the Cube, the Cone, the Cylinder are still forever. They will never again stalk the streets of Paris. The Equilateral Triangle has breathed its last. Braque’s abstract bric-a-brac is fast becoming junk. The most amusing collage will fetch nothing in Europe. Brancusi’s Egg has gone to join the Dodos. But in all its forms—not only in its purest absolute—abstract art is no more. It is in vain to cite Picasso—his latest spawn is merely reflex action, from a lower center, that does not count any more than the stampede of the chicken after its head has been severed. A little kicking goes on, of a morning, in Monsieur Leger’s studio, no doubt (for he is still alive, of course). But all such activity today—however corrupt and involved with natural form—belongs to a movement that is dead. It just runs on for a while, here and there, the work of practitioners no longer young. But it always was, I am afraid, a bit of an automaton.” “It is with genuine regret that I announce the passing of that jolly little movement—just as in a sort of way I should hate to see the last swollen-footed Picasso nymph clump off the stage for the last time. I like to see her lumber on, in the Modern Museum, and squat there, staring blankly at Hoi Polloi. The abstract is dead of a very customary complaint of civilized man: boredom. It was never very hardy, I am afraid. The last war hastened its end—in Europe, I mean. For here in the United States it arrived much later. Its effective life was of a very few years’ duration. Already in 1924 I had dropped it, and although about five years ago several people in England (notably a certain Mr. Ben Nicholson) attempted to apply artificial respiration, 1913 to 1923 was its utmost span in its lands of origin.” In stating that Abstract Art died of acute boredom, I meant boredom on the part of both public and artist. The public got bored because these things meant nothing to them, and they only went to see them in the first instance because they made them laugh. After a bit they became a stale joke. The artists’ boredom was of a more complicated order.” “Abstract art had to be attempted; it had its bootleggers, too, namely the dealers. But as was suggested by the present writer in “The Caliph’s Design,” it is a (fantastic) branch of architecture, rather than anything else. Architecture having recovered and become reinvigorated, there is no further excuse for it.” I devour abstract art, some call me foolish, some wear the same silly befuddled look as I do when they see it. But do not take us for fools. Don’t think a splash of colour and a few lines will pass muster to us. Abstract art is a living, breathing piece of work but do it properly or do NOT do it at all. What do you think?

The End of Abstract Art by Wyndham Lewis When an art dies, there is no announcement in the newspapers, as in the case of the demise of an eminent citizen. So no one knows that it is dead. It is still spoken of as if it were alive a modest little affair, 22


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24


Undress Yourself in Cap d’Agde I have always lived in Hérault, but I have never ever been to the biggest European naturist resort at Cap d’Agde, a naked gem according to some. Finally, I have decided to give it a go.

A

t first I’m shocked: not everybody is naked, nudity is not mandatory! I’m fascinated to see stark naked guys hand-inhand with girls wearing their bikinis, or just the bottoms. Then I encounter a problem: if I don’t wear any clothes where do I put my wallet and my keys? So I decide to disregard the spirit of the place and keep my shorts and shirt on. My first stop: the lobby of a charming brand new hotel, Oz’Inn. Relaxing in a comfortable armchair and enjoying the air conditioning, I inspect the highly erotic painting of ladies in suggestive positions. After a rest in this sumptuous inn I go for a walk in the town – which welcomes 40 000 visitors in July and August - where there is a marina, shopping areas, a campground, villas,

hotels and multi-storey apartment complexes, which are in general slightly more expensive than outside - definitely not a place for the underprivileged. The nudist town has its own daily, La Une, and a glossy weekly magazine, The Village, with articles of interest such as The 10 fantasies of women. Inside, the shops in the shopping arcade have enticing names, such as Sexy Land which sells clothes as provocative as you can imagine. If you are in need of any kind of sex toy or fetish, it’s the place to do your shopping. And if you are looking for a libertine club, they are plentiful. Remarkably, there was a bakery selling pastries shaped as male private parts! According to one young seller in a sexy clothes shop, “It’s nice here, the atmosphere is great, it’s special, no tension with

customers, unlike in normal places outside.” The atmosphere is best described as laid back with a total lack of inhibition. Naturists and libertines in Le Cap d’Agde come from all over Europe and sometimes further. Not many teenagers around, but a number of families with young children and some really gorgeous-looking people, male and female, in their twenties. Nevertheless, most people are middle-aged, some not the most graceful; as well as a lot of surprisingly elderly ladies and gentlemen. I spot someone with a walker and a disabled man in a wheel chair. I feel a sense of admiration for those who stick to the naturist way of life and the spirituality, which I imagine goes with it... The Bay of the Pigs I venture on to the nudist beach, probably the biggest in Europe, if not in the world – it is more than 2 kilometers long. It looks just like a regular beach if were not for the stark naked sunbathers. I go to the eastern side of the beach, the area which gives Cap d’Agde its sulfurous reputation known as the “Bay of the Pigs”. It’s not a chaste place. Here and there snogging couples lie on the sand, and in all likelihood sex fiends lurk on the dunes, but everything looks quiet. Not for long… All of a sudden, around 6 pm, some sunbathers get up hurriedly and gather in a circle. Has somebody drowned or fallen ill? However, the lifeguards don’t rush over, so I guess not. I try to see what is going on. I hardly dare tell the respectable readers of the Herault Times what I saw: a couple are engaged in an intimate relationship surrounded by a crowd of peeping Toms. Later on a friend of mine tells me, “I expected everything but this, it’s incredible, it’s like cattle mating”. It seems that along the shores of the Bay of Pigs public sex is a ritual! At sunset the flock returns to the town and I go with the flow. “At night, the entire place is turned into a sexual extravaganza”, writes an American lover of Cap d’Agde who identifies himself or herself as Play4fun on a forum. Not much of an exaggeration. In restaurants,

Le Cubanos

some customers dress outrageously or wear incredibly provocative attire. Inside the shopping center near Port Ambone the atmosphere becomes electric. There are people wearing eye masks or strange disguises; some flaunt a more sinister look. A whip in his hand, an elderly man appears to be waiting for somebody to flog. I carefully pass him. I feel lucky, he doesn’t flog me. I’m told later that his “victims” are volunteers. The naturist capital of the world is a temple for hedonism. It’s also a hotspot for peeping and showing (its unofficial motto: see and be seen). You may hate it and call it a place for perverts. But the crime rate (any incident is much advertised when it happens) is not higher than outside. It’s altogether a place where orthodox naturists mix harmoniously with libertines and swingers; truly a place of genuine tolerance. Play4fun, the nudist blogger concludes, “The part I will remember more than anything else is that we got to go grocery shopping in the nude! That was a truly unique experience that you just can’t do anywhere in the US, or probably anywhere else in the world! Patrice Victor

* http://www.truenudists.com/forum/ viewthread.php?id=2020 How to get there: At the main entrance you have to pay 6 euros as a pedestrian or 15 euros for two people with a car. If you are on a shoestring budget or if you don’t mind walking, you can go for free, starting from Marseillan beach and strolling along the seashore for about 30 minutes.

We invite you to come and try our traditional French cuisine. All of our ingredients are purchased fresh daily. Open Monday to Sunday, 10 30h to 23h00 . Lunch time and evening formulas 12 euros. St Thibery Reservations: 06 48 59 00 49 25

The bank that likes to say yes!


“Seasonal and Fresh”

Recipe Times with Bassie Scott

Salad Days

When catering in London with my friend Ginny we used to laugh about writing a book to be entitled ‘Twenty witty ways with a lettuce leaf’. We can all get stuck in a rut with salads; green this, tomato that. I’ve come up with some fairly simple ideas, using some of the fabulous vegetables in season right now and, hopefully, to complement whatever you might be conjuring up for family and friends on these hot, lazy August days and nights.

Pea salad with zesty lemon dressing

Serves 4 - 6

I can hear cries of ‘but peas aren’t in season!’. Frozen peas are always in season! They are frozen at the point of picking, thereby keeping all their lovely flavour and vitamins intact. Keep some in your freezer and you can have this salad whipped up in no time. 250 g frozen petit pois

Whizz up all the dressing ingredients together and set aside. Boil or steam peas for 3 minutes. Drain and whilst still hot pour the dressing over them. Leave to go cold and marinate for a good 4 hours in the fridge.

1 pack smoked lardons, pan fried in olive oil until crispy A crisp lettuce, shredded A good bunch of rocket

When ready to serve, put lettuce and rocket in the bottom of a salad bowl. Mix the dressed peas with the crispy lardons and place over the salad leaves.

For the dressing: Zest and juice of a lemon 1 garlic clove, crushed 2 tbsp walnut oil 4 tbsp olive oil 1 tbsp raspberry vinegar 1 tsp Dijon mustard A handful of mint, finely chopped Salt & freshly ground pepper

Cook’s note: The lemon in the dressing will discolour the peas but don’t worry, it doesn’t spoil their flavour. This dish can also be turned into a lovely main course lunch, simply by strewing some goat’s cheese over the top, drizzling with more olive oil and serving with the usual crusty baguette!

A little pea history

When peas reached France around 800, Charlemagne had them planted in his domaines. During the Middle Ages, dried peas became a staple food for European peasants. In their dried form, peas could be stored throughout the winter months. They were inexpensive and plentiful, and made a wholesome meal that the poor could afford. 26


Courgette ‘Tagliatelle’ You can see from the picture why I named this dish ‘tagliatelle’. I remember being in Provence about 10 years ago, at my brother’s house and someone bringing this dish. I have never forgotten it or how simple it was, so all these years later here it is, or at least my version of it. I’ve used tarragon as I feel it’s such an underrated herb and marries so well with the courgettes. If you can’t find it, parsley can be substituted but do hunt it out in the markets, it’s worth it.

Serves 4 - 6

4 largish courgettes Pan of boiling salted water Bowl of iced water For the dressing: A good handful of fresh tarragon, finely chopped 1 lemon, zest and juice A good glug of olive oil 1 clove of garlic, crushed Salt & pepper With a potato peeler, ‘peel’ the courgettes into long strips until you reach the seeds in the middle. Place strips of courgettes into the boiling, salted water and boil for 1 minute only. Drain and then plunge them into the iced water (this will keep them bright and green and halt the cooking process). Drain again, place onto kitchen paper to dry a bit, then tip into a bowl. Put all the dressing ingredients into a jar and shake vigorously. Pour dressing over courgettes and then, with your hands, mix thoroughly but carefully so as not to break the courgette strips but to cover each strip with the tarragon dressing. Chill until ready to eat. To serve: place on a flat dish or into a pretty bowl and grate some more lemon zest over if you wish.

Haricot Bean Salad I tend to keep tins or jars of these gorgeous white beans in the store cupboard as they can be used in a variety of dishes, some of which will appear later in the year. This is such a fresh tasting salad, using aubergines, tomatoes and black olives but with the addition of cumin and coriander to add a bit of a twist to the whole taste sensation.

Serves 4 – 6 2 x 425g tins of haricot beans (haricots blancs, prepared) 5 vine tomatoes, de-seeded and finely chopped ½ a large red pepper, finely chopped 1 medium aubergine, finely chopped 1 tsp coriander seeds, crushed 1 tsp cumin seeds, crushed ½ a fresh red chilli, finely chopped 1 garlic clove, crushed 1 can of black olives, stoned (dénoyautées) 1 fistful of parsley, chopped A really good glug of olive oil 1 lemon, zest and juice Salt & pepper to taste

Decant the beans into a sieve or colander and wash them under cold water. Drain thoroughly and place into a mixing bowl. In a frying pan, put 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and heat up. Add the crushed cumin and coriander and fry to release the lovely flavours, approx 2 mins. Add the chopped aubergine and continue to sauté for about 5-6 minutes until it is slightly charred and crispy. When cool put in with the beans. Add the tomatoes, olives, red pepper, chilli, parsley and garlic to the beans and mix well with your hands. Lastly add the rest of the olive oil and lemon zest and juice. At this point you may want to mix it altogether with spoons but I still use my hands, ensuring every little bit is covered with oil and lemon. Chill until ready to serve. You might like to sprinkle a bit more chopped parsley over the top just before serving, for presentation. 27


PORT - EMERGENCY - DIY - TECH SUPPORT - EMERGENCY - DIY -TECH SUPPORT - DIY - TE PRESTIGE RENOVATION

E- male

(S.A.R.L.)

English owned house renovation and general building company based in Cessenon serving the Hérault region.

Computer Speak

Please contact us for a FREE quotation

Tel: 0467 893254 Mob: 0629 674591 Email: prestigerenovation48@yahoo.com

E- male

Siret No: 75101626.2-0001.4

The Art of the Bricoleur Why not go native and change your plugs?

H

umanity’s natural tendency to diversify is exemplified by the global assortment of different electrical plugs and sockets. Europe has progressed towards a standard system, the CEE 7/7 plug will fit both French and German sockets and is now fitted to new electrical appliances across the continent. But this, of course, doesn’t help if your appliances have UK style plugs. Adaptors are the simplest solution, we bought a couple of dozen with us when we moved to France. But how many of the things will you eventually need? And I have discovered that they can overheat and melt if too much power goes through them. My bench saw draws over 2000 watts and the adaptor (most of them are rated at 750w) couldn’t cope. Replacing the French sockets in your house with English ones is not an option. It will almost certainly invalidate your insurance, could lead to EDF cutting off the electricity supply and, if you ever wanted to sell the property, you would have to put the French ones back again. But, if you are living here full time, why not ‘go native’ and put French plugs on your appliances; but do be aware that changing the plug may break the conditions of the guarantee of electrical goods are still under

warranty. Older UK appliances will have plugs that can be unscrewed and removed; more recent ones will have moulded plugs that need be to cut off. Whilst wiring a French plug is straightforward, opening one up can prove to be more troublesome. Unlike UK plugs which come apart into a top and a bottom when the retaining screw is undone, French ingenuity has created a variety of designs, including some neat folding ones, that require a bit of puzzling over before they come apart. You will almost certainly be aware that you will not find a fuse in a French plug. In the UK the fuse protects the ‘live’ side of the circuit, and in particular the cable between the appliance and the plug. Also missing from the inside of a French plug is any indication of which wire goes where. Your electrical sockets should have been installed with the earth pin at the top, neutral on the left, and live on the right. So with the hole for the earth pin at the top, French plugs should be wired, just like UK plugs, with the earth, green and yellow wire in the middle, neutral, blue wire on the left, and the brown, live wire on the right. When you trim the wires to fit into the terminals, do not remove too much insulation, bare wire should not be visible once the wire has been tightened down into place. Don’t forget to tighten down the cable clamp making sure that it grips the outer insulation of the cable not the three individual wires.

Computer Speak

I

just wanted to share something with you that I find quite exciting..... By the time you read this, The Herault Times will allow you to download this issue to your pc, your mac, your iPhone or iPad and your Android tablet or phone. As if this isn’t enough, they will give you direct links to music, weather, articles and very soon you can download articles as audio files. Go to www.theheraulttimes.com for more information. So in order to make this accessible to everyone and not just those tech savvy coolios I thought I would explain QR codes. Oh the rise of Smartphones and tablets. You know, those phones that occasionally let you make phone calls but are mainly seen in the hands of those ‘beautiful people’ as they roller blade down the sidewalk with long legs (women) or fantastically honed bodies (err, the women and the men). They don’t make calls, they check the web on their phone, they make dinner reservations or play the latest games or watch the latest movies. (I like this idea but you do need 20/20 vision as the screen is 3cms tall.) As we become more ‘Bladerunner’ with our lives, well the good old marketing companies get involved and they want immediate access through our iPhones and our tablets and they take a barcode, mess around with it a little and hallelujah, we can now listen to music clips, read reviews and / or buy items from x, y and z just by scanning it. And that my HT readers is it. Don’t be afraid of QR codes. They are amazingly simple but open up a wealth of information while you are out and about. My favourite one is a QR and barcode reader. I go into a shop, love a computer on display, scan it and my iPad/ Android/ iPhone immediately tells me where to get it for the best price. Maketing in reverse ha!! Here’s a list (only some) of the ones you should look for. Android Store QR Droid Mobiletag QR Code Scanner Apple Store QR Reader for iPhone QR Scanner By Grip’d LLC

The GOSSIP 1. Is Apple taking a financial Interest in Twitter? 2. Facebook founder Mark Zuckerburg loses 3 billion dollars in 48 hours....on paper. I don’t think he’ll notice. 28


Classified Adverts Associations / Clubs

Technology

Curtains, blinds, Loose covers, Cushions.

Experienced curtain maker happy to quote for large and small jobs and give advice on styles and fabrics. Ring for discussion & free estimate. Telephone 06 82 34 60 50

Emotional, linguistic and practical support to cancer patients and their families through our team of trained volunteers. For information and support: Helpline: 04 67 44 87 06, email:csf.languedoc@gmail.com, www.csf-languedoc.com All welcome.

Dick Fowler Construction

Liner Pools, Solid Pools All house renovation and construction work Email; fowlerbatiment@gmail.com Port: 0670 91 12 17

The Tuesday Club

A lively group of English speaking people from all nationalities meet to hear talks, exchange ideas and socialise. www.tuesdayclub.eu tuesdayclub.fr@gmail.com

Babies & Toddlers Baby and Toddler Equipment Rental Service.

Services

Women’s International Club, Languedoc- Roussilon Meets in Saint Chinian, 1st Thursday of month , 2.30pm., at Salle de L’Abbatiale. Our meetings are conducted in French and English. info@wic-lr.com www.wic-lr.com

The Church of England at St. Pargoire, Holy Communion 2nd Sunday each month at 10 am. Everyone welcome. Details achstp@gmail.com

Commercial Cleaning Machine for hire. Cleans soft furnishings, rugs, mattresses, sunbed cushions, car interiors, etc.Contact Trudi: 0499570589 trudi@ppm34.fr We’re here for you All those mundane jobs - Cleaning, laundry, Gardening, security checks, Airport runs. Contact Rick 04 67 00 12 82 Email dogsbody_fr@hotmail.co.uk MAN WITH A VAN Deliveries, collections, removals, house clearance, garden clearance/maintenance. No job too small. No room in your car? Furniture/Building Materials to collect? Rubbish to dispose of? Please call or email Tim. 0033 (0)7 87 22 05 55. enquiries@manwithavan.fr 29

Excellent quality equipment and toys for your little ones. Car seats newborn to age 12, travel cots/wooden cots (+ mattress and bedlinen), high chairs, pushchairs, walkers, scooters, toy kits... 04 67 26 90 42 or 06 32 07 84 13, nicole@kiddiekitrentals.com, www.kiddiekitrentals.com

Wanted Distributors Wanted

Distributors wanted for The Herault Times Please contact us on: info@theheraulttimes.com

Announcements Le Bookshop Librairie Anglophone / café 8 rue du Bras de Fer - 340000 Montpellier Tel./Fax : 04 67 66 22 90 contact@lebookshop.com www.lebookshop.com


Classified Adverts Business / Financial

Wellbeing

Bike Rental Mountain Bike Rental in Cessenon Discover the superb Languedoc countryside on a mountain bike. Prices from €10. Tel 06 02 36 48 09 www.rambic.fr

Looking for a HOBBY or PART-TIME job? Neal’s Yard, currently the fastest growing organic body care direct sales company in the UK, is looking for new independent consultants in France. FREE training, excellent income plan! If working with this AWESOME Company interests you please contact Pam Kay pamkay.personal@gmail.com 0642159631

Drop in Day Last Thursday of the month (exc July/Aug/Dec) for support, fun activities and pampering hosted in Montagnac by CSF- Languedoc. For information and support:: Helpline: 04 67 44 87 06, email: csf.languedoc@gmail.com, www.csf-languedoc.com All welcome.

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Books ENGLISH BOOKS AND CARDS

available at the English Bookstall at the following markets: Monday- Bedarieux, Tuesday - Marseillan Ville, Wednesday - Clermont l’Herault, Saturday - Lodeve. Contact Kerith Biggs 04 67 96 68 87

Roquebrun Property Management Personalised services for holiday homes and seasonal rentals. Full or ‘pay as you go’ service. Homes available to rent for 1- 15 people. Call Sue on 0652752445. www.househunterslanguedoc.com

Bed & Breakfast New Bed & Breakfast in Cessenon sur Orb, 10 kms from St Chinian. 2 luxury King Sized rooms, 1 min walk to river & town centre. Wifi/Internet access. Chris & Susan. Ph 0033 (0) 9 80 39 94 33. lovesy.huston@gmail.com

Group bookings taken. Thai massages, Reflexology, Neck and face massage, Reiki, Oil massage. Susannah 0652752445 / 0467243142

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Property

Séjour de Remise en forme avec Cure de Raisin, cours de Relaxation, Massage, balades, exercices doux... et conseils individualisés ! Organisé par une Naturopathe dans un lieu privilégié et très calme, au cœur des terres rouges dominant le Salagou. 2 propositions : du 4 au 7 septembre ou du 9 au 13 septembre 2012 - inscriptions jusqu’au 31 juillet ! voir : curederaisin.blogspot.fr ou tel : 06 23 01 68 96

MISC Garage Sale. Many bargains. Opposite 10 Rue de Paris, Hérépian. (Look for balloons.) Sunday 19th August 10am - 6pm. All welcome.

Jewellery JEWELLERY Summer is here, so its time to buy some colourful jewellery. Over 150 different designs in all colours at wonderful prices. See us at Clermont and Lodeve markets. Ian Mills 04.67.29.77.14. ian.mills41@gmail.com.

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The Herault Times offers a full classified ads section online and within these pages. From as little as 15€ per issue you can buy, sell, rent, swap or announce in the magazine and online. To advertise please email: advertising@theheraulttimes.com or call on 06 24 63 63 77 or go online to: classifieds.theheraulttimes.com Advertise, Sell, buy, meet people, hobbies - classifieds.theheraulttimes.com

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General, Cars & Bikes for Sale, Bike Rentals, Entertainment, Courses, Family, Financial and Legal, Food & Drink, Health & Beauty, Wellbeing, Home, Garden, Pets, Sport & Leisure, Anglo Organisations, Societies & Clubs, Employment Wanted, Jobs, For Sale, Property to Rent, Property for Sale, Property Wanted, Books, Services, Babies & Toddlers, Announcemets, Miscellaneous and more..... 30


Numbers

BRADLEY WIGGINS!

Service

Number

Police

17

Fire - Pompiers

18

Medical - SAMU

15

Sea Rescue (From Land)

112

Sea Rescue (From Sea) Channel 16

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t is still, weeks later, taking time to sink in! A British cyclist has won the Tour de France and another was second on the podium. An incredible 3 weeks for British sport in France. Bradley Wiggins not only won the epic race but was dominant throughout. Over 3 minutes ahead of second placed Chris Froome and 6 minutes in front of Vincenzo Nibali. Wiggo crushed the opposition in the penultimate stage at Chatres in his favoured type of race, a gruelling 50km time trial. To put the icing on the cake, Team Sky attacked Les Champs-Elysées in Paris and Mark Cavendish won the final sprint for Britain’s seventh stage win of the race. Only one stage passed through Hérault this year, finishing with a sprint win for German André Greipel in Cap d’Agde. Team Sky arrived in force ensuring that Wiggins kept his overall lead intact. A lot of British fans were there on a hot day to witness history in the making. Mark Cavendish was not on form that day, struggling to keep contact on the climb of Mont. St. Clare in Sète. He made up for it a week later in the week with a tremendous finish in Brive and the win in Paris. He now has 23 stage wins and many cycling pundits think that he is the best sprinter of all time. The reaction to the British success from the French public and media changed during the race. Some initially grumbled that it was not possible for a track rider and gold medallist to convert himself into a road racer. Others criticised Team Sky for being too well organised and ruthless. Not enough panache in their approach. Quite a change for a British team to

SOS Europe

112

Child Abuse

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get the preparation right! The sportsmanship shown by Wiggins when carpet tacks caused many punctures and held up opponents on the Limoux stage impressed the French. He stopped other racers taking advantage of this and Cadel Evans was allowed to catch up. This is how a champion is supposed to behave. The media also warmed to the reserved style of Wiggins and his dry sense of humour. The race itself suited Bradley Wiggins. Two n every village and every town the Hérault has long time trials and less mountain finishes a chance for you to visit and explore the was an advantage. The absence of Contador magnificent produce and wares that it offers. (suspended) and Schleck (injured) helped as Below is a selection, please visit well. Despite this, it was Sky who dominated www.theheraulttimes.com for a complete listing the hills and the support riding of the team, particularly Chris Froome was tremendous. Indeed, a Tour de France to be remembered. AGDE – Thursday morning. During the 1930s the Vélodrome d’Hiver in Covered market every morning, except Monday Paris, an indoor arena and track, was a famous BEZIERS - Friday morning: place for cycling and social life. Flower market in the Allèes Paul Riquet During the war the Vél d’Hiv, as it was Saturday morning: vegetables in the Allèes Paul known, had an infamous reputation as it was Riquet; organic produce by Les Halles/ Sunday morning:large general market used to detain Jews and others arrested before CESSENON-SUR-ORB – Tuesday morning deportation to concentration camps. The 70th Produce/Saturday morning: various anniversary of these events was remembered LODEVE – Saturday morning on the same weekend as the finish of the Tour MEZE – Thursday and Sunday morning de France. Recognition that it was the French MONS-LA-TRIVALLE – Thursday morning police and Vichy regime that carried out the MONTPELLIER – Historic centre, Monday to roundup of thousands of innocent people was Thursday 7h to 13h30, Friday and Saturday from a symbolic moment. However, it must be 7h to 1800h (full list of Montpellier markets on HT PEZENAS – Saturday morning noted that many Jewish people, often SAINT-CHINIAN – Thursday and Sunday children, were hidden by French families SETE – Monday morning: regional produce/ during the war at great risk to their own Wednesday morning: various/Thursday morning: safety. organic and regional produce/Friday morning: Events which must not be forgotten.

Markets

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regional produce.

Stuart Turpie

Good Times....Fun Times.....The Herault Times 31


32

The Herault Times August / September 2012  

Issue 4 of the English Language Magazine for Anglophones living in the Hérault region of France

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