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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Welcome! to ‘The Deux-Sèvres M o n t h l y ’ m a g a z i n e . . . I s s u e 21 : November 2012. Well, the weather has changed and dare I say it, the “C” word is just around the corner! Time for the browsing, buying, ordering and planning to commence... On top of the wonderful gift buying this Christmas, we have decided Christmas will be the deadline for the completion of our barn renovation. (Yes, I know - we don’t do things by halves!) Family are “booked in” for Christmas dinner by the newly installed log burner and alongside the freshly cut Christmas tree positioned perfectly in the corner of the room. I have it all there in my mind’s eye......but the question is - will we make it? Let’s hope so!

à plus, Sarah.

Email: info@thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr or Tel: 05 49 70 26 21.

Annual Subscription. If   you   would  like  to  receive  a  copy  of   ‘The  Deux-­‐Sèvres  Monthly’   magazine  by  post  each  month,  please  complete  this  form  and  send   to  La  Bartière,  79130  Secondigny.  Please  enclose  a  cheque  to  cover   postage  for  the  year. 28€  within  France,  18€  to  addresses  in  UK. (Unfortunately  the  cheaper  ‘printed  papers’  rate  cannot  be  applied   to  addresses  within  France,  only  when  sending  abroad)   Full  Name: Postal  Address: Postcode:

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Emergency Numbers: 15 SAMU, Medical 17 Gendarmes, Police 18 Pompiers, Fire

112 European emergency 113 Drugs and alcohol

© Sarah  Berry  2012.    All  rights  reserved. Material   may   not   be   reproduced   without   permission.    While   care   is   taken   to   ensure   that   articles  and   features   are   accurate,   Sarah   Berry   accepts  no   liability   for   reader   dissatisfaction.    The   opinions   expressed   and  experiences   shared   are   given   by   individual   authors   and   do   not   necessarily   represent   the   views   or   opinions  of  the  publisher. Please   ensure   you   verify   that   the   company  you  are   dealing   with   is  a   registered   trading  company  in  France  and/or  elsewhere. <<The   Deux-­‐Sèvres   Monthly>>   est   édité   par   Sarah   Berry,   La   Bartière,   79130,   Secondigny.  Tél:   05  49  70   26   21.     Directeur   de   la   publication   et   rédacteur   en   chef:   Sarah   Berry.   Crédits   photos:   Sarah   Berry,   Clkr   et   morgeufile.com.   Impression:   Raynaud   Imprimeurs,   zone   industrielle,   BP13,   79160,   Coulonges-­‐ sur-­‐l’Autize.     Dépôt   légal:  novembre   2012  -­‐  Tirage:   5  000  exemplaires.    Siret:  515   249  738  00011  ISSN:  2115-­‐4848

CONTENTS

What’s On.......................................................................................................4 Getting  Out  &  About......................................................................................6 Hobbies,  Clubs  &  Associations.....................................................................13 Take  a  Break..................................................................................................14 Our  Furry  Friends..........................................................................................15 Health,  Beauty  &  Fitness..............................................................................16 The  Great  Outdoors......................................................................................17 French  Life,  Food  &  Drink.............................................................................19 French  Adventures.......................................................................................23 Motoring.......................................................................................................24 Communications...........................................................................................25 Building  &  Renovation..................................................................................27 Business,  Finance  &  Property.......................................................................33

THIS MONTH’S  ADVERTISERS   79  Renovations.......................................................................................... 29 A  La  Bonne  Vie  (Restaurant)...................................................................... 21 Ace  Pneus  (Tyre  Supplier  &  Fitter)............................................................ 24 Affordable  UK  Designs  (Kitchens  &  UPVC  D/Glazing)............................... 2 AKE  Petits  Travaux  (Builder)...................................................................... 29 Alan  Pearce  (Plumbing  &  Heating)............................................................ 28 Andrew  Longman  (Plumber)..................................................................... 28 Andrew  Quick  Building  Services................................................................ 32 An  English  Nursery  in  France  (Garden  Centre)......................................... 18 Antiquites  Decoration  &  Galerie  du  309................................................... 6 Architect  anglais  en  France  (Vaughan  Abbott).......................................... 31 Blevins  Franks  Financial  Management  Ltd................................................ 34 Bois  Nature  Energie  (Firewood  Supplier).................................................. 18 British  Mobile  Mechanic  (John  Purchase)................................................. 24 Cafe  Cour  du  Miracle................................................................................. 20 Café  des  Belles  Fleurs................................................................................ 19 Caniclôture  (Hidden  fencing)..................................................................... 15 Chris  Bassett  Construction........................................................................ 30 Christies  (English  Book  Shop  and  Tea  Room)............................................ 6 Cottage  Services  (Garden  Maintenance).................................................. 18 CSB  Construction....................................................................................... 32 Consultus  Care  &  Nursing  Ltd.................................................................... 39 Cut  46  (Hair  Salon)..................................................................................... 17 Dave  Bowring  (Electrician)........................................................................ 30 D  J  Maintenance  (Handyman)................................................................... 29 David  Watkins  (Chimney  Sweep).............................................................. 30 deVere  Group  (Financial  Advisors)............................................................ 36 Energie-­‐79.................................................................................................. 28 Evelyne  Mallett  (French  Teacher  and  Translator)..................................... 9 Fresco  Interiors  (Interior  Design).............................................................. 31 Gardening  &  Cleaning  Services  (Dean  Smalley)........................................ 35 George  Rayner  Computers........................................................................ 25 Glass  2  France  (uPVC  Windows  &  Doors)................................................. 2 Hallmark  Electronique  (Electricians  &  Sat.  Engineers).............................. 30 Homes  in  France  (Estate  Agent)................................................................ 39 Insink  Plumbing......................................................................................... 28 John  Etherington  (Home  and  Garden)...................................................... 18 John  Snee  (Groundworks  &  Septic  Tanks)................................................. 32 John  Spray  Maçonnerie  (Stonemason)..................................................... 30 Julie’s  Cleaning  Services............................................................................ 35 Keith  Bassett  General  Building  Services.................................................... 29 La  Deuxieme  Chance  (Annie  Sloan  chalk  paint  supplier).......................... 27 La  Grande  Galerie...................................................................................... 6 La  Joie  de  Vivre.......................................................................................... 6 Le  Logis  (Rare  Breed  Pigs  in  France).......................................................... 20 Leggett  Immobilier.................................................................................... 38 Le  Relais  Délice  (Restaurant)..................................................................... 22 Mad  Hatter’s  Kitchen  (Restaurant)........................................................... 22 Man  &  Van................................................................................................. 25 Michael  Glover  (Plasterer,  Renderer  &  Tiler)............................................ 30 Michael  Hobson  (Painter  &  Decorator)..................................................... 31 MKR  Mobile  Beauty................................................................................... 16 MS  Electrique  (Electrician)........................................................................ 31 Mutuelle  de  Poitiers  Assurances............................................................... 25 Nathan  Foster  Building  Services................................................................ 29 Pamela  Irving  (Massage  &  Reflexology).................................................... 16 Pause!  Cafe  l’Absie..................................................................................... 19 Phil  Savage  (General  House  Repairs)......................................................... 31 Philip  Irving  (Mini  Digger  hire).................................................................. 32 Plombiere  Anglais  en  France  (Plumber).................................................... 28 Poitou  Property  Services........................................................................... 34 Premier  Autos  -­‐  Mike  Lane  (Mechanic)..................................................... 24 RDK  Roofing  &  Building  Services............................................................... 30 Red,  White  &  Blue..................................................................................... 20 Restaurant  des  Canards............................................................................. 21 Rob  Berry  (Plasterer)................................................................................. 28 Robert  Walker  Plomberie  (Plumbing,  Heating,  Air  con)........................... 29 Ross  Hendry  (Interface  Consulting  &  Engineering)................................... 26 Satellite  TV  (Nigel  Gubb)........................................................................... 25 sarl  Down  to  Earth  (Groundwork  &  Construction)................................... 31 Séjour  Deuxième  Langue  (FR)................................................................... 36 Shaun  Grice  (Home  Renovation)............................................................... 32 Siddalls  (Financial  Advisors)...................................................................... 35 Simon  The  Tiler.......................................................................................... 29 Spectrum  IFA  Group  (Amanda  Johnson)................................................... 33 Steve  Enderby............................................................................................ 31 Sue  Burgess  (French  Courses  &  Translation)............................................ 9 Taylor  Electricté......................................................................................... 31 The  English  Mechanic  &  Son  -­‐  Tony  Eyre................................................... 24 The  Market  (Luché-­‐sur-­‐Brioux)................................................................. 6 Thompson  Interiors  (Dry-­‐lining  and  plastering)........................................ 30 Total  Renovation  Services  (Michael  Dominey)......................................... 28 Tracey  Bowring  (Hairdressing  &  Nails)...................................................... 16 Traducteurs  Assermentés  sarl  (Sworn  Translators)................................... 10 Trisha  Mobile  Hairdresser.......................................................................... 16 Val  Assist  (Translation  Services)................................................................ 9 Vendée  Pools............................................................................................. 37 VMP  (Windows  &  Doors).......................................................................... 2 Page 3


THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

What’s On... November 2012 2nd November  -­‐  Phoenix  Cards  &  Gifts At  the  Tipsy  bar,  Coulonges-­‐sur-­‐l'Autize,  New  Autumn/Winter  range   from  Phoenix  available,  incl  Christmas  cards,  wrapping  paper  &  gifts.   Contact   Della   James  05   49   05   78   61/   dellajamesie2@aol.com   for   info  or  to  request  a  catalogue. 2nd  November  -­‐  Quiz  Night At  Restaurant  des  Canards.    Food  included.    Please  see  advert  on  P.21. 9th  November  -­‐  Trader’s  Afternoon At  Pause!  Café,  L’Absie.  2pm  -­‐  5pm.     Please  see   advert  on  P.19  for   more  details. 10th  November  -­‐  Live  Music  with  Daddy  Mass At  Café  des  Belles  Fleurs,  Fenioux   at   8pm.    See  advert   on  P.19  for   more  details. 22nd  November  -­‐  An  evening  of  delicious  desserts. At  A  La  Bonne   Vie,  Le  Beugnon  at   7,30pm.    Reservations  advised.     Please  see  advert  on  P.21 22nd  to  24th  November  -­‐  Reaction  Theatre  performs  ‘The  39  Steps’ At  Le  Petit  Theatre,  Secondigny.    Please  find  more  details  on  P.10. 23rd  November  -­‐  Live  Music  with  ‘Three  plus  One’ At  Café  des  Belles  Fleurs,  Fenioux   at   8pm.    See  advert   on  P.19  for   more  details. 24th  November  -­‐  Charity  Concert  in  aid  of  Hemochromatosis At   Salle   de   Fetes,   La   Chapelle   Gaudin   at   8pm.     For   more   information,  please  see  advert  on  P.7. 29th  November  -­‐  Fashion  Show At   Le   Lion   d’Or,   St  Hilaire  de   Voust  at   8pm.    Tickets   12€,  money   raised  to  be  split   between  two  local  schools.    Please  see  advert  on   P.7  for  more  information.

What’s Coming Up... 1st December  -­‐  English  Speaking  Church  Christmas  Bazaar At   Salle   Polyvalente,   Savigne   (86)   10.30am-­‐3.30pm.   Including   Christmas   gifts,  toys,  jewellery,  collectibles,  cakes,  sweets,  cards,   books,   raffle,   produce   and   a   visit   from   Santa!   Please   email:   office.goodshepherd@orange.fr  for  more  details. 1st  &  2nd  December  -­‐  St  Loup  Christmas  Market Please  read  more  about  this  2  day  event  on  P.8 1st  &  2nd  December  -­‐  Old  King  Cole  -­‐  The  Panto Encore   Theatre  perform  a  festive  show  at  Foyer   Rural,  Loulay.     Please  see  more  information  on  P.8 2nd  December  -­‐  Christmas  Fair. At   Melleran,   11am   -­‐   4pm   in   aid   of   Cancer   Support   Deux-­‐ Sèvres.   To  reserve  a  table   please  book  early  as  they  are  much   in   demand.   Contact   Ann:   05   49   27   22   83   or   email   theashwells@googlemail.com 4th  December  -­‐  Christmas  Fayre At  La  Grande  Galerie,  Civray.  Please  see  advert  on  P.6  for  more   information. 7th  December  -­‐  Marché  de  Noël At  the  Tipsy  Bar,  Coulonges-­‐sur-­‐l’Autize,  3.30pm-­‐6pm.    Please   see  advert  on  P.6  for  more  information. 9th  December  -­‐  Christmas  Dinner  with  Jazz At  Restaurant   des  Canards,  Chef  Boutonne.  Booking  is   advised.     Please  see  advert  on  P.21  for  more  information. 14th  December  -­‐  Music/Bistro  Night At   the   Mad   Hatter’s   Kitchen,  Caunay.     Music   by  A  Vee   and   Andy  Em.    See  page  22  for  more  details. 15th  December  -­‐  Christmas  Fayre At  The  Market,  Luché  sur  Brioux.    Stallholder  space  available. Please  see  advert  on  P.6  for  more  details. 15th  December  -­‐  Terves  Christmas  Market Organised  by  Association  Aidez.    Please  find  more  details  on  P.7.

Monthly services   in   the   English   speaking  Anglican   Church   in   Deux-­‐Sèvres Jassay The   Chaplaincy   of   Christ   the   Good   Shepherd,   Poitou-­‐ Charentes,    has  a  Home  Group  Service  at  Jassay    commencing  at   11.00am  on  every  2nd   Sunday  in   the  month.  It   is   held   at   the   home   of   Ann   White,   a   warm  welcome  awaits  everyone  for   a   time  of  worship  and  fellowship. St Leger The  Chaplaincy  of  Christ  the  Good  Shepherd,  Poitou-­‐Charentes,   also  holds  services  on  the  1st  Sunday  of   each  month  at  10.30am   at  St  Leger  near   Melle.  After  each  service,  tea  or  coffee  is  served   and  an  opportunity  to  meet  other  people  in  the  area. Parthenay The  Chaplaincy  of  Christ  the  Good  Shepherd,  Poitou-­‐Charentes,   also  holds  services  on  the  4th  Sunday  of  each  month  at  10.30am   in   the   Presbytery   Rooms,   rue   de   la   Citadelle,   Parthenay,   opposite   St   Croix   Church.   After   each   service,  tea   or   coffee   is   served  and  everyone  is  invited  to  a  'bring  and  share'  lunch.   For   more   information   about   location   of   Churches   and   about   what   else   is   happening   near   you   please   take   a   look   at   our   website:   www.church-­‐in-­‐france.com   or   contact   us   at   office.goodshepherd@orange.fr

Monthly services  in   the   English   speaking   Anglican  Church  in  the   Vendée: Puy de Serre All   Saints,  Vendée  holds  two  services  each  month,   on   the  2nd  and   4th   Sundays  at   the  church   of   St.  Marthe,   Puy   de   Serre,  at   11am.     After   each  service,  tea  and   coffee  is  served  in  the   parish  room  and   everyone  is  invited  to  a  ‘bring  and  share’  lunch. Other  services  are  held  in   the  west  of  the  Vendée,  in  La  Chapelle   Achard  and  La  Chapelle  Palluau.     For  details  of  these,  please  check   the  website:    www.allsaintsvendee.fr

A VERY  WARM  WELCOME  awaits  you  at  ESCOVAL   (The  English  Speaking  Church  of  the  Valley  of  the  Loire).     Communion  Services  are  held  on  the  3rd  Sunday  of  each  month   at   La  Chapelle  de  la  Bonne  Dame  de  Ranton  at  11.30am  followed  by  a   Bring  and  Share  lunch.   Full   details   of   how   to   find   us   may   be   found   on   our   website   at:   www.escoval.org   or   please   telephone   us   at:  05   49   66   79   14.     Our  GPS  address  is  46˚59'25.30  N    0˚02'06.22  W.

Contact ‘The  Deux-­‐Sèvres  Monthly’ La  Bartière,  79130,  Secondigny. Telephone:  05  49  70  26  21   or  email:  info@thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr or see our website: www.thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

                                                                         

Paperback Jan Books  in  English

1st Nov:  Bar  le  Palais,  St  Aubin  le  Cloud.  10am-­‐12pm 1st  Nov:  Bar  La  Cabane  de  Vouhé,  Vouhé.  6.30-­‐8pm*   2nd  Nov:  Bar  de  la  Paix,  Thouars.  12pm-­‐2pm 2nd  Nov:  Le  Tipsy  Bar,  Coulonges  sur  l’Autize.  4pm-­‐6pm 4th  Nov:  Café  des  Belles  Fleurs,  Fenioux  2pm-­‐4pm 7th  Nov:  Cafe  Cour  de  Miracle,  Vouvant.  2.30pm-­‐4.30pm 8th  Nov:  Pause!  Cafe,  L’Absie.  2pm-­‐5pm 9th  Nov:  Jan’s  home,  La  Ferrière-­‐en-­‐Parthenay.  11am-­‐4pm   10th  Nov:  Cafe  Le  Chauray,  St  Maixent  l’Ecole.  10am-­‐1pm 13th  Nov:  Pizzeria  Resto  Bar,  Bressuire.  2.30pm-­‐4.30pm 29th  Nov:    Joie  de  Vivre,  Moncoutant.  2pm-­‐5pm 30th  Nov:  Le  P’tit  Boucard,  Menigoute.  4pm-­‐6pm *+  Quiz  &  Fish  and  Chips

For more  info  contact  Jan  on: 06  08  30  73  29  or  email:  paperbackjan@gmail.com

+ a

little something extra...

Anyone who fancies seeing their writing prowess in print, could think about writing a book review for the spot on Page 12: ‘YOUR Book Reviews’. Sarah is always looking for budding authors to write a piece about 150 words long, describing their take on a particular book. I am offering a prize of one free book to anyone who is successful in having their review printed.

‘The DSM’ Monthly Photograph Competition

WINNER! Congratulations to this month’s competition winner, Jon Crocker, 79340 for this spectacular Barn Owl.

LAST CHANCE!   to   see   YOUR   photograph   on   the   front   cover  of  our   magazine.  Our   monthly  photo  compeeeon  will   be  closing    aner  selecong  the  December  cover.    Deadline  for   entries:  midnight  ,  15th  November.     Don’t  delay  -­‐  Send  in  your  festive  photos  today!

The National Holidays, Religious and Feast Days 2012 (remaining): Thursday 1  November........... All  Saints’  Day  (La  Toussaint) Sunday  11  November............ Armistice  Day  (Jour  d’Armistice  1918) Tuesday  25  December........... Christmas  Day  (Noël)

Contact ‘The  Deux-­‐Sèvres  Monthly’ La  Bartière,  79130,  Secondigny. Telephone:  05  49  70  26  21   or  email:  info@thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr or see our website: www.thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr

Open 6-8p                                    La            Vendee  Chippy m                                                          Traditional  Fish  &  Chips  in  France! Wednesdays (Nov 7th, 14th, 21st & 28th) Bar ‘Auberge le St Vincent’, St Vincent Sterlanges Fridays (Nov 2nd, 9th, 16th, 23rd & 30th) Bar ‘Au Bon Coin’, Thoursais Bouildroux (Sorry  no  Vendee  Chippy  in  Mervent  until  Spring.) For  more  info  please  email:  lavendeechippy@hotmail.fr

Open 6-8p m

Fish 4 Chip Fish, Chips & mushy peas!

Mondays: Bar Tilleuls, Champniers (near Civray) Tuesdays: Sauzé-Vaussais (Main square & can be eaten in local bar) Wednesdays: Chef Boutonne (near Chateau) Thursdays: Sauzé-Vaussais (Main square & can be eaten in local bar) Fridays: Mansle (Car park of Simply Supermarket) Tel: 06 37 53 56 20, or visit: www.mobilefishandchipsfrance.com

Reel Fish & Chips Traditional English style Fish & Chips

Weds 7th Nov -  The Canteen, Etusson 18H30 - 21H00 Friday 9th Nov -  Bar Tabac, Bouille-Loretz 18H30 - 21H00 Weds 21st Nov - The Canteen, Etusson 18H30 - 21H00 Thurs 22nd Nov - St Martin de Sanzay 18H30 - 21H00 Friday 23rd Nov -  Bar Tabac, Genneton 18H30 - 21H00 Tel: 06 04 14 23 94, or visit: www.reelfishandchips.net

Mr T’s Friterie Plat à Emporter Traditionnel Britannique

With regular venues at:

• • • •

Open 6.30 -8

.30

Aulnay  (Open  from  6pm)        •          Matha                                                                                 pm* Beauvoir  Sur  Niort • St  Hilaire  de  Villefranche Gourville                     • St  Jean  d’Angély Loulay

See www.frying2nite.com for details or call 06 02  22  44  74

* Please  note  Autumn/Winter  opening  hours

Local Markets Mondays:

Tuesdays: Wednesdays: Thursdays: Fridays: Saturdays:

Sundays:

• Lencloitre (1st Monday in month) (dept.86) • Lezay • Coulonges-sur-l’Autize • Thouars • Parthenay • Sauzé Vaussais • Niort • Thouars • Melle • Chef Boutonne • Airvault • Niort • St. Maixent l’École • Fontenay le Comte • Neuville (dept.86)

Photo: Lisa Roberts

                                                                                             

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Getting Out & About...

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Association Aidez Supporting French Local Charities Terves Christmas Market 2012 Saturday 15th December We hope  you  have  all  had  a  really  good  summer  and   are  now  able   to  think  ahead  to  the  Christmas  period.   With  only  two  months  to   go   before  the  Terves  Christmas  Market,   The   Aidez   committee   are   busy   working   towards   making   this   another   spectacular   event   for   all.    With  Keynotes  booked  to  sing   some   of   our   favourite   Christmas   Carols   and   Father   Christmas   calling  in   at  some  point  during   the   afternoon,   we  hope  this   year   will  again  be  a  special  date  for  every  ones  Diary. This   will   be   our   seventh   year   at   Terves   for   which   we   are   very   grateful   to   the   Mayor,   Mr   Dufes   who   enjoys   and   supports   our   event  each  year. The   hall   is   booked   &   confirmed  for  Saturday   December   15th   and   we  will  open  the   doors   at   11h00   and   close  at   18h00.   We   only   have   a   few   spare  tables  left,  thanks   to   all   who   pre   booked   t h e i r   t a b l e s   l a s t   December.  Therefore  if   you   have   not   already   booked   and   would   like   a   table   please  telephone  or  email  as  soon  as  possible. Once  again,  thank  you  all  for  your  continued  support,  and  we  look   forward  to  seeing  you  all  again  on  December  15th. Lin  Adams,  President  Association  Aidez Tel:  05  49  64  84  95  or  email:  lin.adams@wanadoo.fr.

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

St Loup Christmas Market 1st & 2nd December

by Gilly  Hunt

The beautiful   village  of  St   Loup,  which   is  situated   in  a  valley  at   the   confluence   of   the   river  Thouet   and   river   Cebron   will   once   again   be   hosting   a   Christmas   Market   on   the   first   weekend   of   December.   It  is  an  annual  event   and  I  have  been  attending  for  the  last  8  years   and   it  has   never  failed   to   provide   the   perfect   start  to   Christmas.   The  Market   opens  on  Saturday  the  1st  December  at  15h00  and  will   continue   until   midnight.   The   market  will   then  re-­‐open   at  10h00   on   Sunday   2nd   December,   finally   closing  at  19h00.     There  is  no  entry   fee   and   there  is   ample   parking  on   the  outskirts  of  the  village. The   normally  quiet   “high  street”  is   packed   with   stalls   selling  a  variety  

Pld Ling Dole - Uhe Qanto

Fun and Frolic from your Favourite Nursery Rhyme Characters. Laugh and cry, boo and hiss and sing along with Old King Cole and Mother Hubbard, Jack and Jill, Simple Simon, Scrooge, Mary Mary and many more as they battle with Malfey the Bad Fairy to lift the curse that stops the beautiful Princess Gillian marrying her childhood sweetheart. Performances: • 20h00 Saturday 1st December • 15h00 Sunday 2 December at the Foyer Rural, LOULAY. (just north of St. Jean D’Angeley).

PANTO Tickets; 10€ from the Encore Theatre website www.encore-theatre.org, from the Tourist Office in St Jean d'Angeley and via email: encoreticketsales@gmail.com.

of products;   the   small   houses  open  their  doors   to   traders   or   sell   their   own   goods   direct   from   their  sitting  rooms.     There   are   also   the   wooden  huts  that   spring  up  just  for  the  weekend,  which  last   year   were  painted   in  pastel  colours  and  so  reminded  me  of  beach  huts.     Each  one  was   festooned  with  coloured   lights  and   offered  a  wide   range  of  goods  to  be  bought.

For a  full  list  of  our  advertising  rates,   please  phone  for  an  advertising  pack   or  download  from  our  website.

The market  offers  something  for  all  the  family  with  a  wide  range  of   goodies  for   sale  including  toys,  Christmas  gifts,   soaps,   jewellery,   wine,   beer,   cakes,   cheeses   and   so   much   more.     Music   rings   out   and   the   village   opens   its   arms   to   local   people  selling  their   wares.     It   is   the   perfect  place  to  start  your   Christmas  shopping   with   a   wide   variety   of   products   and   there   really   is   something  for  everyone.

Record amount raised at Hope Association’s October Book Sale

I can   also  confirm  that   Father   Christmas  will  be  in   attendance  on   both  days,  as  I  have  it  from  a  very  reliable  source  that  he  is  flying  in   especially  from   Lapland   and  has  already  booked   accommodation   in  St  Loup. In   addition   this   year   it   is   hoped   that   there   will   be   a   children’s   merry-­‐go-­‐round   and   also   the   opportunity   to   have   a   pony  ride   –   only   for   the   little   ones   though!   There   will   be   food   and   drink   available   to  buy  and  taste  throughout  both  days;  usually  there  is   a   particularly  good   mulled  wine  on  offer!     Amongst   the   100   stalls   already  booked  you  are  sure  to  find  something  that  interests  you   and  your  family. One  thing  is  guaranteed   the   atmosphere  will   be   one  of  warmth,   friendliness  and   best   of   all   Christmassy  –   The  St   Loup   Christmas   Market   really   is  a  must   visit  to  start  December  and  the   run  up  to   Christmas.

Tel: 05  49  70  26  21 www.thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr

UPD

ATE

A massive   thank  you  to  all   the  volunteers  who  helped   at   the  Hope   Association  Book  Sale  on  the  5th,  6th  and  7th  of  October.    Also   a   big  thank  you  to  everyone  who  came  to  the  event  and  supported   Hope. The  result   of  the  sale  has  exceeded  all  our  expectations,  we  raised   the   staggering   amount   of   over   11,000   euros!!   Thank  you   all   so   much   for   your   continued   support,   without   you   all   we   could   not   have   done  it.    Already,  as  a  result   of   this   success,  we  have  been   able   to   send   donations   out   to  some   of   the   other   Animal   Rescue   Associations   that   we   support;   it   will   help   them   so   much   to   continue  their  relentless  work  helping  animals  in  need.   A  date  for   your   Diaries...the  next   Hope   Book   Sale  is  being  held  on   the  24th,  25th  and  26th  May  2013,  at  the  Salles  des  Fetes,  Clussais   la   Pommeraie,   79190.     If   you   have   books,   CDs,  DVDs   or   audio   books  or  bric-­‐a-­‐brac  to  donate  or  would  like  to  volunteer  or  adopt   or   foster   a  cat   or   dog,   please  go   to   www.hopeassoc.org  and  use   the  contact  form  and  email  addresses  on  the  site. We,  at   Hope,  look  forward  to   seeing  you   at  next   May's  Book   Sale   where  1000s  of  English  and  French  Books  will  be  on  sale  at  just   1   euro  each.

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Regional Words in Modern French

by Sue  Burgess

Well, first  of  all,  how  was  your  Frenglish  ?   Here  are  the  answers  to  last  month's  Frenglish  quiz: >après-­‐ski/après  ski/apres  ski  (n) >after-­‐ski  pastimes   >clientèle/clientele  (n)

>customers

>communiqué/communique (n) >official  statement  

The Basque   language   was   spoken   before   the   Gauls   arrived.   However,  the  Basque  language  seems  to  have  given  few  words  to   modern  French  -­‐   «ennui»   problem  (enojuo   en   basque,   enojo   en   espagnol),  «aisé»   well-­‐off  (aisa  en  basque),  «vague»    wave  (baga). The   words   «biniou»   (Breton   bagpipe),   «dolmen»   and   «goéland»  (seagull)  are  Breton.     «Cingler»  (to  sting   /  to  lash)  and   «Houlette»   (crook  /  trowel)  come  from  the   North,  from  the  region   of  Picardy.  «Barrique»   (barrel)  and  «cadet»   (the  younger  child)  are   Gascon  and   the   region  of  Alsace   gives   «choucroute»   (sauerkraut)     and  «quiche».  «Avalanche»,  «crétin»  (moron)  and  «mélèze»  (larch)   are  from  Savoy.

>déja-­‐vu

>feeling of   having   experienced   something  before

>en route

>on the  way  

Vocabulary /  Vocabulaire

>etiquette

>good behaviour/manners

>fiancé/fiancée

>boy/girl to  whom  one  is  engaged  

les Guignols............................... Les  Guignols  was   the   name   of   a   T V   p ro g ra m m e   s i m i l a r   to   « Spitting Image »

>fête/fete

>party/garden party    

>impromptu

>Without any  planning

>impasse

>a dead  end  situation  

>joie de  vivre

>state of  happiness

>pied-­‐à-­‐terre

>small town  house   used  for  short   periods  

>trompe l'oeil

>painted to   give   the   illusion   of   reality  

>tour de  force

>impressive achievement    

une barrique............................. barrel  /  cask

>venue

>meeting-­‐place

une barrique  (familiar)............. tubby  man  /  woman

Spectacle de  guignol  ................ Punch  and  Judy  show C'est  du  guignol........................ It's  farcical Faire  le  guignol..........................  To  clown  around Sous  la  houlette  de    ................. Under  the  leadership  of   Cadet......................................... The  younger   Un  cadet  (jeune  sportif)  .......... junior    (in  sport) un  cadet  (élève  officier)............ cadet

Modern French   contains  many  words  which  have  regional   origins.   Latin   was   the   main   language   for   teaching   until   the   Revolution.   Theses   had  to  be  written  in  Latin  until  the   end   of  the  19th  century   and  Latin  was  the  language  used  in  the  church  until  1960. The  revolution  pushed  for  the  eradication  of  regional   dialects  which   kept   citizens  out   of  public  life  and  functions.  Obligatory  education   (1852)   helped   the   process   of   the   unification   of   the   French   language. La   langue   d'oil   (the   language   of   the   West),   gives   us   the   words   «cagibi»   (store   cupboard),   «califourchon»   (astride)   and   «crachin»  (drizzle). The   Limousin  brings  the  word  «chabichou»  (  the  name  of  a  type  of   goat's   cheese)   and   the   area   around   Lyon   gives   us   «moutarde»  (mustard)  and  «guignol»  (puppet).

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Letters for the Toilet

On arrival in France, Blair McKewen got a knock on the door and the 'facteur' asked "Où est votre boîte à lettres?" Blair thought that the postman was asking "Où est votre toilette" and led him down the entrance hall and through the kitchen. Maybe you have several such short funny stories of misunderstandings in French? If you send them to Peter (contact@traducteurs-assermentes.fr) and he receives enough good ones, he will print them in a new column starting in the new year. Please add your name and whether you'd like it printed or not.

E UPDAT

CANCER SUPPORT 10th ANNIVERSARY

Reaction Theatre

Every year  in  September,  Cancer  Support  throughout  France  holds   an   Awareness  Week.     The  intention   is  to   help  people  be  aware   that  if  you  or  someone  close  to  you   is  affected  by  cancer,  there  is   help  at  hand,  whether   it  be  just  to  listen  or  perhaps  to  help  with   translation  or  maybe  to  accompany  you  to  hospital.  There   are   a   number  of  ways  in  which  Cancer  Support  can  help. This   year   Cancer   Support   in   France   celebrates   its   10th   Anniversary.  It  was  started  by  one  woman,  Linda  Shepherd,  who   having   been   diagnosed   with   cancer   soon   after   her   arrival   in   France,  realised  that  there  was   a  need  for   some  kind   of  support.     It   has  now  grown   into   a  network  of  16   associations   covering   32   Departments.   This  year   in  Deux-­‐Sèvres   CSDS   held  events  throughout   the  week   starting  with  a  BBQ  in  St.  Marsault   which  raised    €1031.00.  The   highlight   of   the  day  was   the   one   metre   croquembouche  (pièce   montée),  complete  with  sparklers  to  celebrate  the  anniversary. The  weekend  of  the  22/23rd,  Cancer  Support   joined  with  La  Ligue   Contre   le   Cancer   in   Melleran   for   the   Relais   pour   la   Vie.   CSDS   fielded  a  team  to   take  part  in  the  24  hour   walk  as  well  as  taking   part   in   other   events   there.   On   the   Monday   there   was   an   Afternoon   Tea  at   St.  Hilaire  de   Voust  which  raised  €254  plus  €50   for   the  Raffle.  On  the  same  day  an   Afternoon  Coffee  was  held  in   Glenay  which  raised   €125.    On  the  Tuesday  it   was  Afternoon   Tea   at   Amailloux   and   Wednesday   Morning   Coffee   at   Cherveux.     Thursday  CSDS  held  an   Open   Day  at   Poitiers   Hospital   shared   with  the  Charente  CS  Association.  This  was  an  opportunity  to   talk  to  doctors,  nurses,  other  hospital  staff   and   the  general   public   about   the   work   of   Cancer   Support.  On   the  Friday   there   was   another   Coffee   Morning   event   at   Fenery.   Although  final  figures  are  not  yet  in,  it   is  believed  that  the   total   raised   throughout   the  week  is  about  €2000.00   which   together   with   the   very  generous   donation   from   le   bar   de   la   Poste   in   L’Absie   of   €2666.00   will   enable   Cancer   Support   to   once   again   donate   specialized   equipment   to   one   of   the   Palliative   Care   Units   in   Deux-­‐Sèvres. Cancer   Support   Deux-­‐Sèvres  would   like   to   thank  all   those  who  gave  their  time,  their  energies  and  for   their   generosity,  in   particular   Rob   &  Loraine,  Ron   &   Kay,   Helen,  Bev,  Leo,  Andy  &  Lyn,  Annick,  Julie,  Lin,  Clive   &  Julie,  Jacqui,  Bernie,  Nick,  Linda,  Dean,  Cave  du   Reve,  Cerizay,  and  Café  Coeur  de  Miracle,  Vouvant.

are proud to present

The 39 Steps

John   Buchan   wrote   The   39   steps   in   1915;   Alfred   Hitchcock   filmed  it  in  1935;  originally  with  two  characters,  it  was  adapted   as  a  play  with  4  actors  in  2005.     It   is  the  latter  which   Reaction   Theatre   brings   to   Le   Petit   Theatre   in   Secondigny   for   their   November   production,   produced   by   Paul   Chandler.   It's   currently  playing  at  The  Criterion  Theatre  in  London.   At   the  theatre   one   evening,  Richard   Hannay,  on  the  run   from   the   police,  is  picked   up   by  Annabel   Smith,  who   tells  him  two   men   are   threatening   to   kill   her   in   an   effort   to   obtain   information   which   would   breach   national   security.   Their   organisation  is  called  ‘the  39  steps’.     Richard,  finding  Annabel   murdered,   takes  her  place  and  travels   to   Scotland   to  try   and   expose  the   39   steps,   accompanied   by  a  feisty   young  woman   called  Pamela.     In   the  stage  version,  the  film’s  serious  spy  story   is  played  mainly  for  laughs  with   the  script  full   of  allusions  and   puns.  

Dates:  22,  23,  24  November  2012 Place:    Le  Petit  Theatre,  Secondigny Time:  8pm,    Saturday  Matinee  2.30pm.

Refreshments will  be  served  after  each  performance.   Tickets  10  euros  from:  reaction.theatre@yahoo.fr Tel:  05  49  70  29  86

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

COCKLESHELL HEROES 70th ANNIVERSARY This December   will   be   the   70th   anniversary   of   Operation   Frankton,  the  raid   on   German   shipping  in   Bordeaux  Harbour   popularly  known  as,  ‘The  Cockleshell  Heroes’. Many   of   you   will   have   seen   the   1955   film   of   the   same   name   directed   and   starring  José   Ferrer   and,   probably,   your   knowledge   of   this   historical   event   will   be   based  upon  the  screenplay.     The   leader   of   the   actual   raid,   Major   “Blondie”   HASLER   RM   was   invited   to   the   premiere   of   the   film   but   refused   to   lend   his   name   to   the   publicity   because   of   the   inaccuracies  it   contains.     To  the  best  of   knowledge,  HASLER   never   watched  the  film.

Notes from the North As   we   are   in   the   month   of   Remembrance,   perhaps  we  should  go  back  to  the  beginning   of  Remembrance  Tide   and  let   the  following   words   of   Colonel   John   McCrae   (1915)   remind  us  how  it   all  began,  and   continues  to   this   day.     We,  in   The   Royal   British   Legion,  still   support  those  who  serve  and  have  served  in   Her   Majesty's   Armed   Forces:   Shoulder   to  

Shoulder.

Already this   year   several   groups   have   completed   parts   of   the   escape  route  in  order  to  raise  money  for  Service  charities  and,  true   to   form,   your   local   Royal   British   Legion   Branch   in   the   Poitou-­‐ Charentes   at   Linazay   will   be   celebrating   the   feats   of   courage   carried   out   in   this   daring   raid   and   commemorating   the   only   successful  escape   of  Major  HASLER   and   Marine  SPARKS  from  the   group   of   ten   raiders.     Eric   Edwards   and   Craig   Moore   will   be   undertaking  the  overland   escape  route  from  Blaye  in  Aquitaine  to   Ruffec   in   the  Charente.     The   route   will   be  walked   on  the  actual   anniversary  dates  starting  on  12  December   at  Blaye  and   finishing   at  Ruffec  at  12:00  on   18   December.     Details  of  the  route  are  given   on   the  Itinerary  Page  of  the  web  site  mentioned  below.    The  aim,   of   course,  is   to   raise  money  for   The  Royal   British   Legion   Poppy   Appeal. If  you  would   like  to   know   more   about   t h i s   h i s t o r i c a l   event,   Eric   has   created   a  web  site,   the   contents   of   which   have   been   verified   by   Mark   Bentinc   the   Royal   Marines   Historian   at   the   Royal   Navy   Museum   in   Portsmouth.     There  is  a  link  on  every  page  of  the  web  site  to,  “JustGiving”  where   any  donations  you  make  by  credit  card  will  go  directly  to  The  Royal   British   Legion   accredited  to  this  fundraiser.    There  are  also   other   methods   of   donating   given   on   the  Home   Page   of   the   web   site,     www.frankton-­‐trail.com.

Many members   of   the   Northern   Section   attend   the   French   Ceremony   of   Remembrance   at   the   memorial   in   the   Jardin   du   public   in   Parthenay  on   11th  November.    Please  do  join   us  there,   or  those  in  your  own  commune,  and  wear  your  poppy  with  pride. Terri  Laverick,  PRO  Northern  Section.

Photo above:   Fundraisers   Eric   Edwards   &   Craig   Moore   at   the   memorial  at  Baunac

Photos: Poppy field: © Sally Coppack 2012, Cockleshell Heroes film cover: www.wikipedia.org

WEAR YOUR  POPPY  WITH  PRID E! Here’s   a  list   of   locations  througho ut   the  region  where  you  may  acquire   your  Poppy: •Ranton  Church,  Airvault •Belle  Fleurs  Restaurant,  Fenioux • Pause  Cafe  L’Absie • Ross  Hendry,  La  Chapelle  aux  Lys • Gan  Assurance,  Parthenay • Will  Rowe,  Fenery • Paperback  Jan,  La  Ferriere • Le  Bonne  Vie,  Le  Beugnon • Tabac,  L’Eclerc,  Parthenay • Bar  La  Poste,  L’Absie • Tipsy  Bar,  Coulonges • La  Drapeau  Bar,  Parthenay • Cafe  Theatre,  Parthenay

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY ‘The Traditional   Publishing  Route’  is   the  next   article   in   the  series   from   Alison  Morton.     Please  see  back  issues   of   ‘The  DSM’  if  you   would  like  to  see  previous  articles.

The Traditional Publishing Route

Although there  are  many  pathways  open  to  you   (mainstream,  self-­‐ publishing,   assisted   publishing)   the   usual   way   up   until   now   has   been  the  author-­‐to-­‐agent-­‐to-­‐publisher-­‐to-­‐bookseller  route.   Finding   a   literary  agent   to   suit   you   is   not   easy;  even   if   they  are   willing   to   take   you   on,  you   have   to   be   sure   they   are   the   right   person   to   negotiate   for   you,  sell   your   rights   to   best   advantage,   promote  your  career   and  look  after   your  interests  and  sometimes   your   sanity.  If   you   write  romance,   you  need   an  agent   who  knows   the  romance  publishing  houses;  ditto  for   crime   and  thrillers,  sci-­‐fi   or   historical  fiction.  You  can  find  all   this  information   in  the  Writers’   &  Artists’  Yearbook  (WAYB),  a  weighty  tome,  but  worth  that  weight   in  gold  and  saved  postage. So,  having  drawn  up  a  list  of  appropriate  agents  from  your  research   and  checked  out   the  submission  guidelines  on  their  websites,  you   can  start  putting  your   submission  package  together.  This  is  usually   a  covering  letter,  a  one-­‐page  synopsis  of  your  novel  and   the   first   three   chapters   or   fifty   pages.   However,   many   agents   are   now   following   US   practice   and   ask   you   to   send   a   query   letter   first,   outlining   your   book  idea.   This   enables   agents   to   see   what   your   writing   looks   like   as   well   as   assess   whether   your   story   has   commercial   legs.     Each   agent   is   different   and   I   cannot   stress   strongly   enough   that   you   should   adapt   your   materials   (letter,   synopsis,  chapters)   to   comply  with   what   they  ask   you   to   send.   Don’t   send   anything   less   or,   worse,   more.   Nor   any   presents   or   fancy  poems  –  they  hate  it. The  covering  letter  should  be  a   simple  introduction   to   your  novel,   including   word   count,   genre   (crime,   romance,   historical,   etc.),   a   couple  of  sentences  about  the  book  and  two  more  about  you.  You   should   end   it   with  how  you   see  it  fitting  into  the  market  and  sign   off  with  a  polite  “ Thank  you  for  your  time.” Writing   a   synopsis  tends   to  strike  bolts  of  fear   into   writers’  hearts,   but  it   needn’t.    It’s  a  page  outlining  the  action  in  the  book,  tells  the   agent  briefly  about   the  characters,  their  motivation  and  goals.  You   then   describe  the  main  crunch   points  and  the  final  outcome.  The   agent  wants  to  see  if  you  know  how  to  tell   a  convincing  story  and   can   imagine   characters   gripping   enough   to   interest   the   reading   public. The   WAYB   gives   good,   solid   advice,  but   I’d   also   recommend   the   following   two   ebooks   for   their   invaluable   practical   help:  Write   a   Great   Synopsis  and   Dear  Agent   -­‐  Write  the  Letter   That   Sells   Your   Book,  both   by  Nicola   Morgan,  Crabbit   Publishing,  2012.  She  also   writes  the  excellent  Write  to  be  Published,  published  in  paperback   by  Snowbooks,  2011  (No,  I’m  not  on  commission!). Sadly,   very  few   publishers  and   certainly   not   the   big   houses   accept   unagented   manuscripts.   Some   local,   specialised   and   independent   presses   will,   though.     Yo u   c a n   f i n d   t h e m   at   htt p : / / w w w. i p g b o o k . c o m / p u b l i s h e r s -­‐ pages-­‐32.php.   Approach   them   in   the   same  way  as  agents.    These  days,  many   a g e n t s   a n d   p u b l i s h e r s   a c c e p t   submission   by   email,   but   check   their   websites  first.  

Finally, here   are   a  few  suggestions  for  book   presents  your  nearest   and  dearest  could  buy  for  you,  or  perhaps  you  could  treat  yourself. • Self   Editing   for   Fiction   Writers,   Renni   Browne   &   Dave   King,   Collins,  2nd  ed.,  2004 • Bestseller,  Celia  Brayfield,  Fourth  Estate,  1996 • Wannabe   a   Writer   We’ve   Heard   Of?   Jane   Wenham-­‐Jones,   Accent  Press,  2012 • On  Writing,  Stephen  King,  NEL,  2001

Alison Morton  writes  alternative  history  thrillers,  blogs  about   writing  and  Romans  at  http://alison-­‐morton.com/blog/  and  is   a   member   of   the   Romantic   Novelists’   Association   and   the   Society  of  Authors.

YOUR Book Reviews... Thank  you  to  Terry  Hawker  for  this  review... I was fortunate to come across this book at a fayre which I had not known about except for the publicity from this magazine, so perhaps a review is a small way to say thanks!   “The Kite Runner” by Khaled Hosseini is a delightful first novel, beautifully written which tells of two boys, inseparable friends from different backgrounds growing up in Kabul before the Russian occupation of 1979. One, Amir, is born into a wealthy family, whereas the other, Hassan, is his devoted servant.   Their strong bond is broken when Amir witnesses a serious assault on Hassan by a gang of boys in Kabul and is afraid to intervene.  To assuage his feelings of cowardice and denial, he accuses Amir of theft from his household as a means of burying  the truth.    Such is his devotion Hassan accepts the falsehood and leaves. As the Russians tighten their grip on Afghanistan, Amir and his father flee to America, and it is here, married and grown up, that the deep mystery of the relationship between Amir and Hassan unfolds. Amir is urged by an old family friend in Afghanistan to find courage to re-visit the country of his birth under Taliban rule and make amends to Hassan. Full of atmosphere and containing all the emotions of the human heart, “The Kite Runner” stands out as a book among many to be remembered and kept for rereading.

We would  love  to  show  more  of  YOUR  Book  Reviews.  If  you  would  like  to  share  one  with  us,   please  send  it  on  an  email  to:  info@thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr

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Hobbies, Clubs & Associations... LA CHAPELLE  GAUDIN  CRAFT  GROUP

We are   a  small  group   of   ladies   who   are  keen  to   meet   other   like   minded  people  to  form  a  craft  circle. All  crafts  are  welcome  -­‐  needlecraft,  paper  craft  -­‐  anything  goes! If  you  are  interested,   please  contact  HELEN   AURELIUS  HADDOCK:   helen.aurelius@gmail.com  or  join  us  on  FACEBOOK (search:  LaChappelleGaudinCraftGroup)

Association Meridien Green We are  an   Anglo-­‐French   group   which  was  founded   in   2001   for   mutual  understanding  of  each  other's  language   and  culture.  We   meet  twice  weekly  in   the  Salle  des   Associations  in  St   Coutant,   79120.     The   best   way  to   find  out   more   is  to  visit  our  website  -­‐   www.meridiengreen.asso.fr  or  contact  Maureen  Dalby:   05  49  29  94  50. The  name   of   our  group   comes  from  the  fact   that  St   Coutant   is   on  the  Greenwich  Meridian!

The Filling  Station  Poitou-­‐Charentes Meetings  at   The  Little   Stone  Church,  14b  Avenue  de  d’Hôtel  de   Ville.  79110  Chef   Boutonne.  ALL  WELCOME.  Interested  to   find   out  more?  Please  view  the  website:  www.thefillingstation.org.uk     or  contact    Mike  Willis  05  49  87  89  16.  michael.willis@sfr.fr The  Filling  Station,  Vendee Meetings  at   La  Brionniere,  St   Pierre  du  Chemin,  85120,  near   La   Chataigneraie.  Telephone  Chris  &  Julie  on   Tel:   0960   497850  or   email  christopher.taylor85@orange.fr

Beginnersʼ lessons: Rock ʻnʼ Roll: Fridays at 8pm. Cha cha cha and Waltz: Mondays at 7pm Salle Leo Lagrange in Parthenay. For details of other classes and social events contact: parthenay.rocknrolldance@gmail.com or call Chris on: 05 49 94 20 23

Book Group....meeting 2nd Thursday of the

month from 3pm at Christies Tea Room & Bookshop, Gençay, 86160. Take a look at the Book Group page on the website: www.chezchristies.com for more information.

CRAFT CAFE  CREATIF

If you enjoy sewing, knitting, crochet or any crafts, you are invited to bring along your current project to our venue in L’Absie and join a like-minded group of women, for friendship and to exchange ideas over a cup of tea. For further information contact: knight.margaret@orange.fr. Through the Lens Group Local photography group who meets on the last Monday in each month to chat about all things photography! New members welcome. For further information contact: Ian Gawn: 02 51 00 84 52 or Brian Preece: 05 49 72 09 94

Alone in  France? Les Amis Solitaires We  are  a  group  of  people  living  alone  in  France.    We  meet  up  for   coffee  mornings  from  11am. 1st  Tuesday:  The  Gallery,  Civray  (coinciding  with  market  day). Every  2nd  &  4th  Thursday,  The  Lemon  Tree,  Sauzé  Vaussais. Every  3rd  Thursday,  Sports  Bar,  Confolens.   More  details  from  Gwen  Shepherd  05  49  87  91  79 Franglais  Thouars The   Thouars   ‘Franglais’   group   meets   every   Wednesday   from   19.30h   to   21.00h,   in   the   Association’s   centre   at   7   rue   Anne   Desrays,  Thouars,  for  conversation  in  English  and  French. We   welcome   those   of   all   nationalities   who   would   like   to   participate.  Either  come  along  to  see  us  one  evening,  or  contact  us   at:  Mobile:    06  52  21  92  34  ~  Email:    jcbed@orange.fr

Secondigny Running Club...

Put the bounce back in your step. Join our friendly and supportive running group. All abilities welcome. Email Kelly for more details: kellyencezelle@hotmail.co.uk

The Harmonics based  in  the   Salle   d'Annexe   behind  

the mairie   in   Civray   are   looking   for   singers.   We   meet   each   Wednesday  from  2.00pm  to  4.00pm.  No  experience   necessary  just  a   willingness   and   commitment   to   learn.   We   sing   all   sorts   of  music,   from   stage   and   screen,   gospel,   classical,   country   songs,   madrigals   and  in  several  languages,  whatever  the  music  dictates. We  are  a  small  and  friendly  group  who  would  love  to  meet  you.

Contact: Dolly  Ait  Boualou:05  45  22  89  32 email  sylvia.murray@wanadoo.fr or Margaret  Gomersall  on   05  49  48  09  02,  email:  margaretgomersall@sfr.fr

We are  a  group   of  people  living  alone  in  the  L'Absie  area  who   meet  regularly  for   coffee  and  lunches.    We  meet  on  the  1st  and   3rd   Tuesdays   at   11am   for   coffee   at   the   Pause  cafe  in   L'Absie.     Our   lunches   are   at   different   venues   each   month.   There's   a   warm  welcome  if  you'd  like  to  join  us.   More  details  from  Frank  05  49  69  80  47.

2nd Sunday Motorcycle Club www.2ndsundayclub.fr If you would like to attend our coffee mornings please contact us via the website........ New members always welcome!

Born in   france   during   the   war,  I  am   French   &   American.  (My   blood  family  live  in  New  York,  and  so  for  me  France  opposed  my   departure  in  1946.) I  am  an  orphan,  holocaust  survivor  and   speaker  in  6  languages.     I   have   a   website   in   English,   videos   on   Youtube   and   a   book   in   English  &  Spanish.  This  book  will  be  first  issued  in  November  on   Google.  It  has  600  pages  and   400  photos  of  my  US  family  (since   1870)  and  my  marvelous  7  volunteers  who  saved  my  life.   I  speak  English  and   4  other  European  languages  (all  self  taught)   and  I  am   looking  for   somebody  to   speak  face  to   face  and   by   telephone  to  practice  my  English.    I  live  in  Chauray,  79180 Please   contact   me   by   email:  wladimir.zandt@orange.fr.  or   by   telephone:  06  47  33  74  34. International  journalist,  Consultant  for  unemployed  seniors  and  professional   speaker.

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Take a Break... DSM Easy  Crossword! Down: 1.   Scottish  musician  (8) 2.   One  of  various  primates  (6) 3.   A  register  of  daily  events  (5) 4.   Something  that  is  a  source  of  danger  (6) 5.   Continue   to   exist;   use   persuasion     successfully  (7) 6.   Sprint  like  a  horse  (6) 7.   Pace  (4) 14.   Examined  carefully  (8) 15.   A  pagan;  an  idoliser  (7) 17.   Ideally  perfect  state  (6) 18.   Extreme  care  in  spending  money  (6) 20.   Earnest  request  (6) 21.    Division  (5) 22.   Halt  (4)

Across: 1. Strange   take   on   game   herd     unusually   leads   you   to   succeed.     (4,3,5) 7.   Bitterness  controlled  before  time   off     from  king’s  company  (7) 9.   New  veto  on  large  number  elected  (5) 10.   Sound   effect   produced   by   hollow     beech  object  (4) 11.   More   of  us  mixed  up  in  activity  for     two  couples  (8) 12.   See   you!   With   sound   formula   for     element?  (6) 14.   Instruction  in  religious  cult  is  not  for     everyone  (6) 17.   Building  for  international     organisation  could  be  more  secure  (8) 19.   Model   found   after   triumph;   or     before  party  for  men  (4) 22.   Hurt   when   forms   of   transport     reversed  (5) 23.   Being  strangely  sad,  tell  of  action  put     off  (7) 24.   Seek   favour   after   dangerous   game     and  make  a  meal  of  it  (7,5)

Down: Toughie Crossword! 1.   Code  word  for  an  inspector?  (5) 2.   Having  one’s  family  on  a  boat  brings     togetherness  (7)   3. Politician  straying  in  ancient  city  (4) 4.   Dream   of   having   twice   the   energy   in     turbulent  river  (7) 5.   Edit   tomorrow’s   paper   to   include   a     repeat  of  the  same  (5) 6.   The   coming   of   an   opening   after     publicity  (6) 8.   Finding  nothing   in  the   bar   makes   you     cross  (4) 12.   Company   needs   new   ruse   for     programme  of  lessons  (6) 13.   Will   bounce   back   after   unnatural   lie     cast  (7) 15.   Reptile   that   may   well   have   you     worried?  (7) 16.   Having   a   chap   lusting   after   you   can     incorporate  a  bonus  (4) 18.   Trade   mark   exchange   yielding   loot     from  commercial  potato  product  (5) 20.   Getting   dizzy   from   turgid   Dylan   song     (5) 21.   Every   attention   given   to   article     renders  it  to  powder  (4)

Sudoku Corner... Challenging

www.printfreesudokupuzzles.com

Easy

With thanks  to  M.Morris

Please see  website:  www.thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr  for  answers

Across: 8. Do  away  with  (7) 9.   Show  a  response  to  something  (5) 10.   Card  game  (5) 11.   Surround  entirely  (7) 12.   Country  (French  word)  (4) 13.   Country  formerly  called  Abyssinia  (8) 16.  Casino  game  of  chance  (8) 19.   A  show,  festival  (4) 22.   Small  motorised  bike  (7) 23.   Briosh  Legion  remembrance     emblem  (5) 24.   Evergreen  mediterranean  tree  (5) 25.   Warship  (7)

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Our Furry Friends... Phoenix Association Phoenix  Association  is  a  registered   charity   that   has   existed   since   2001   to   deal   with   the   sad   plight   of   the   ever-­‐increasing   number   of   abused   and   abandoned   animals  in  France.   Phoenix  does  not  have  a  ‘rescue  centre’  as  such.    Sadly,  many  of  the   animals  it  saves  have  only  ever   known  confinement  and  isolation,  so   instead,  the  animals  are  placed  in  foster   homes  all  over  South  West   France   while   they   wait   for   their   loving   and   permanent   forever   homes.  This  gives  Phoenix  a  better  chance  of  assessing  the  animal  in   the  normality   and  comfort   of   a  home  which   leads  to  the  virtually   100%  successful  adoption  rate. Phoenix   is   not   state   funded   and   so   relies   on   fundraising   and   donations   to   cover   the   very  high   re-­‐homing  and  veterinary   costs.   Phoenix   is   formed   of   a   committed   but   fun   and   positive   team   of   volunteers,  and   is  always   on   the  lookout   for   more,  so   if   you   are   interested   in   adopting   an   animal,   foster   caring   or   becoming   a   Member,   please   visit   the   Contact   page   of   the   website   at   www.phoenixasso.com  and   www.facebook.com/PhoenixAssociationFrance    

Available for Adoption

This is Minstrel, born in August 2012. Another case of abandonment. She's a total sweetheart, really pretty and playful. Micro-chipped, vaccinated and de-parasited. All our animals are 'rescues', and if you'd like to adopt Minstrel, please contact Sharon, her Foster Carer, on 05 53 60 73 11 or email: sharonleechappell@hotmail.co.uk.

L’Association Galia   is   a   recognized   public   utility  aiding   the   adoption   of   dogs   in   the   shelter  of  Fontenay  Le  Comte. We  help   dogs  out   of  impound,   found   stray   or  abandoned  to  find  new  families. Refuge  de  l'association  Galia Chemin  des  perchées  (ancienne  déchetterie),   85200  Fontenay  Le  Comte Tel  :  02  51  52  06  19  or  06  28  18  13  72,  association.galia@orange.fr http://association-­‐galia.forumactif.com

APPEAL

Stunning kiens dumped or lost? Unfortunately we don’t know much about these two kittens, except that they just turned up one evening together. They’re clean, litter-trained and hardly any trouble, not feral and very tame. Currently they’re in Dept. 79 and can’t be kept as the lady they chose to adopt already has several cats and cannot take on any more. If you can offer them both a permanent home please contact Julia Hunt: Email: juliahunt4hope@gmail.com or Telephone: 06 24 07 69 33.

Nos Amis Les Animaux 85480 (NALA 85480). Tel: 07 70  31  54  59  ~  

Email: nala85480@hotmail.com www.nosamislesanimaux.com

HOOF (Horse Orientated Open Forum)

HOOF is  open  to  anyone  with  an  equine  interest.     You  do  not  need  to  own  a  horse!    We  meet  about  once  a  month   for  talks,  visits  etc.    Interested? Contact Jo Rowe on: 05 49 64 22 67 or

email: willjo@live.co.uk.

Equine Rescue France

We are always looking for new members and we are in need of donations so we may continue to help equines in France. Please support the ERF. Please contact the Equine Rescue on Tel: 05 49 48 27 91 or visit our website www.equinerescue.org

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Health, Beauty & Fitness... Essential Oils

by Suzanne  Thorne

Aromatherapy has   been   around   for   thousands   of   years   and   the   essential  oils  are  extracted  from  plants,  trees,  grasses  and  flowers.   Oil  is  extracted  from  different  parts  of  the  plant. BAY  OIL  is  extracted  from  the  leaves. VETIVER  OIL  from  the  chopped  roots. GERANIUM  from  leaves  and  stalks. LIME,   GRAPEFRUIT,   LEMON,  MANDARIN,  citrus   oils   are   extracted   from  the  peel. There   are   about   three   hundred   aromatherapy  oils   in   general   use   today   by  professional   practitioners   and   unlike  chemical   drugs   they   pass   through   the   body   excreted   by   urine,   faeces,  perspiration   and   even  exhalation.    The  method  of  excretion  differs  from  oil  to  oil. Oils  have  a  positive  effect  on  blood  circulation  bringing  oxygen  to  the   tissues  and  helping  to  eliminate  carbon  dioxide.  Even  garlic  known  for   its   antibacterial,   antiseptic   properties   will   pass   through   the   body   through   exhalation   (ie  we  have  all  smelt  garlic  on  someones  breath).     Rub  some  on  the  sole  of  your   foot  and  as  with  oils  you  will  taste  them   in  your  mouth  within  minutes.    Aromatherapy  unlike  creams  do  enter   the  blood  stream. Rose   and   Jasmine   are   the   most   expensive   of   oils  as   they  require   hundreds  and  thousands  of  the  blossoms  to  make  the  oil.    Because   oils  are  so  sweet  smelling  it  would  be  easy  to   suppose   their   value  is   one  of  charm,  a  nice  smell,  surely  couldn’t  be  that  powerful.  WRONG!     Essential  oils  are  hugely  powerful.   • Oregano  is  26  times  more  powerful  than  ‘phenol’  which  is  used  in   most  commercial  cleaning  materials. • Lavender  was  used  in  the  first  World  War  on  the  front  line  to  treat   wounds. • Lemon  oil  is  a  great  anti-­‐bacterial  agent  so  use  it  wipe  around  sinks,   taps,  in  the  bathroom,  kitchen  surfaces. Aromatherapy  is  not  just  for  use  on  the  skin  but  is  great  to  use  around   the  home.  Use  an  empty  spray  bottle  with  mineral   water   in  and  a  few   drops   of  your   chosen   oil   to  fragrance  your   rooms.  You  can  also   use   them  in  an  aromatherapy  burner  and  there  is  always  one  that  will  suit   your   mood,  whether   it’s  for   relaxation,   energizing,  uplifting  or   as   a   treatment. If   you   are   using   any   medications   always   consult   your   doctor   before   using   aromatherapy   oils.  All   oils  should  be  used  according   to  the  instructions   and  always   diluted.

Suzanne ~  Independent  Neal’s  Yard  Consultant. Tel:  05  49  26  27  74  email:  suetho@hotmail.com

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Why not find some time to sit still, watch your body breathing. As it does, begin to move the breath consciously and arrive at a comfortable level of a ratio of 1:1  ie breathe in for the count of 6 and breathe out for the count of 6, try to do 6 rounds. Do this for one month every day and experience the effects of yoga. Om Shanti Shanti Shantihi. may the love in our head, heart and hands flourish. Classes at ‘Maison pour tous’, L’Absie.7pm - 8.30pm. **New class in Largeasse (79240)** At salle de millenaire, rue saint roch. 7pm - 8,30pm Contact Rysz for more info: 06 42 35 97 11

The Great Outdoors... We have  been   making  sloe  and  damson  gin  and  vodka,  picking  and   preserving  and  stashing  for  the  winter.    We  recently  made  a  raised  bed   for  our  strawberries  and  filled  them  full  of  manure  before  topping  with   compost.   We   are   expecting   good   results   next   year   without   the   backache.    We  try  to  be  self  sufficient  -­‐  waste  not  want  not  as  they  say. Our  next  project   is  to  attempt  tanning.    No,  not  the  lying  in  the  sun  (in   my  dreams!)  or   the  ‘Fake  Bake’  type   of   tanning  but   preserving   our   animal   skins.     We  are  starting  small  and  will  try  a  rabbit  skin  before  we   move  onto  a  larger  sheepskin  -­‐  we  will  keep  you  posted.

Life on the Farm...

by Peter  &  Jenny  Sebborn.

Hello again.   Just   as   we  thought   we  would   start   to   slow   down  and   reduce   our   livestock   numbers   for   the   winter,   Bianca   the   broody   Bantam   hen   hatched   a   guinea  fowl   keet.   Poor   Bianca  must   be   so   confused  hatching  first  some  ducklings  and  then  Guinea  fowl.     She  is  a   very   good   mum   and   it   is   quite   amusing   watching   her   look   after   youngsters  that  in  some  cases  tower  above  her  in  a  very  short  time. 8  Aylesbury  Pekin  cross  ducks  hatched   too  and  it’s  amazing  how  fast   they   grow   and   they   will   taste   delicious.     Oh,   and   of   course,   not   forgetting    Peggy  our  new    Gloucestershire  Old  Spot  pig.     The  “is  she  /   isn’t   she”   saga   continued   as  Stinkerbelle   aka   Stinky  has  had   a   new   boyfriend  called  Womble  –  but  sadly  no  babies  for   Stinky.    We  may   have  left  it  too  late  as  pigs  become  increasingly  difficult  to  get  pregnant   after  their  second  birthday. All  our  ewes  have  been  tupped  (or  mated)  by  Beavis  and  they  are  now   all   enjoying  the   fantastic  green   grass  which  came   with   the   October   rain. So  what   else  have  we   done  this   month?     Well,  we   have   been  busy   making  a  new   house  for   Peggy.     Peggy  previously  had  litters  of  6-­‐8   piglets.    It  could  be  a  very  busy  Christmas  as  she  is  due  to  farrow  (have   her   piglets)  around  the  18th  December,  but   the  previous  owner   did   warn  us  sometimes  she  is  a  few  days  late.    So  as  well  as  having  a  house   full   of  family  at  Christmas  we  might  be  having  a   barn  full  of   piglets.   Wouldn’t   that   be   a  wonderful   Christmas  present?    We  have  already   been  thinking  of  names  Noel,  Eve,  Holly  and    Santa  to  name  a  few!

We struggled  through   the  dry  September.    Water  butts  ran  dry  and  all   the  animals   needed  constant   water   top-­‐ups  so  we  reverted  to  mains   water.  Next   year   we   will   be   better   prepared   as  we   are  installing   a   20,000  litre  water  pillow  –  another   way  we  can   be  self  sufficient-­‐(ish)     to  collect  all  the  winter  rain. On  the  subject  of  rain,  I  have  discovered  that  Jenny  may  have  a  biblical   connection!    Only  a  couple  of  weeks  ago  she  said  we  must  build  an  ark.   Of   course  I  was  in  extra  pig  mode  but  after  this  weekend’s  rain  -­‐   we   had  150mm  in   24   hours  -­‐   I  think  she   may  have  been  referring  to  an   entirely  different  type  of  ark. Since   arriving   in   France   two   and   a   half   years   ago   we   have   tried   numerous  varieties  of  chickens  for  the  table.    Of  course  you  can  eat  all   varieties   of   chickens   but   we   wanted   a   meaty   bird,   with   the   right   conformity   to   make  an   excellent   roast   chicken   and   we   have   finally   found  one   that   suits   us   very   well.   The   Cobb,  a  fast   growing   white   chicken.    We  have  decided  to  put  another  batch  in  the  incubator  soon   which  will  fill  the  freezer  nicely  after  Christmas. Brrrrrr!     November  brings  us  the  chilly  mornings  and  evenings,  so  tuck   up  warm,  light  that  wood  burner   and  we’ll   see  you  next  month   for   another  update  from  us  here  on  the  farm.  

Peter &  Jenny  Sebborn.  Breeders  of  pigs,  lambs  and  poultry.   La  Gauteliere,  79220,  Pamplie.    Tel:  05  49  28  38  57.

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

THE AMATEUR GARDENER

by Vanda Lawrence

You cannot  fail   to  notice  that  Chrysanthemum  pot  plants  are  to   be   found  in  most   flower  shops  and   garden  centres  at   the  moment.  In   France  the  Chrysanthemum  symbolises  bereavement  and  1st  &  2nd   November,  La  Toussaint   (All   Souls'  Day)  and   Jour  des  Morts  (Day  of   the   Dead)   is   when   families   take   fresh   flowers,   most   notably   the   Chrysanthemum,  to  the  graves  of  their  loved  ones. November  also  is  the  time  to  start  planting  new  trees,  both  fruit  and   ornamental.  I  have  been   advised  that  it  is  not  necessary  to  dig  a  big   planting  hole  -­‐  just   slightly   bigger   &   deeper   than   the   pot  that   the   tree  is   bought  in.    Some   peat  in  the  base  and  around   the  edges,   a   stake  to  avoid  wind-­‐rock  and  if  possible  a  piece  of  drainpipe  inserted   into   the   planting   hole   to   facilitate   watering   directly   to   the   roots   during   dry   periods.   The   tree   will   settle   over   winter   during   the   dormant  period,  then  in  the  spring  will  start  sending  out  new  roots   into  firm  soil  which  will  help  maintain  a  good,  upright  growth  even  in   windy  weather. Now  is  also  a  good  time  to  put  sticky  grease/glue  bands  around   the   trunks  of  your  fruit  trees.  This  will  help  to  prevent  damage  to  leaves   and  blossom  next  spring  caused  by  winter  moth  caterpillars.  If  your   trees  have  supporting  stakes  don't  forget  to  put  bands  around  these   too  -­‐  caterpillars  aren't  fussy  how  they  get  up  into  the  tree! If   you   are   troubled   by   rabbits   gnawing   at   the   bark  of   your   trees,   particularly   young   trees,   make   a   collar   of   chicken   wire   to   wrap   around  the  bottom  of   the  trunk.  Check  this  tree   guard  each   year  to   make  sure  the  wire  is  not  restricting  trunk  expansion. Fruit  trees  can  be  pruned  now,  if  necessary.  Of  course,  it  depends  on   the  form  of  your  tree:  espalier,  cordon,  full   tree  etc,  but  cut  out  dead   wood  and  crossing  branches,  aiming  to  keep  a  nice  open  form  with   plenty  of  air  circulation. Fruited  raspberry  canes  can  be  cut  down  now  and  new  canes  tied  to   the   supports.   They   spread   by   sending   out   suckers   so   keep   the   footprint  of  your  row  of  raspberries  to  about  12-­‐18"  by  pruning  out   any  suckers  which   appear   outside  this  area.  If   you  are  buying  new   canes   to   plant   be  aware  that  there  are  two   types:  those  that   fruit   once  a  year  and   those  that  will  give  a  second,  smaller  harvest  in  late   summer  -­‐  the  choice  is  yours. Blackberry  bushes  also   need  dealing  with   after  fruiting.  Gloves  are   recommended   to   protect   against   thorns,  although   some   modern   blackberry  varieties   are  virtually  thornless  which   is   a  bonus.  Prune   out  all  fruited  canes,  thin   new  canes  to  about  6  per  plant  and  prune   the  side  branches  on  these  new  canes  to  10-­‐12  buds. Black  spot  fungus  can  overwinter  on  rose  stems  and  fallen  leaves  so   make  sure  you  remove  them  all  when  you  prune  in  Autumn. Toadstools   on   the   lawn   are   short-­‐lived   but   get   rid   of   them   by   brushing  with   a  stiff  broom   to   break  the  fungi  before  the   caps  can   open  to  release  their  spores.  Collect  and  dispose  of  the  fungi. Clear  fallen  leaves  from  guttering.  Wedge  a  ball  of  plastic  netting  into   the  top  opening  of  a  drainpipe.  It  will  act   as  a  filter  and  stop  leaves   etc   from   clogging   up   the   pipe  or   falling  into  the  water   butt.  Save   fallen  leaves  into  black  plastic  sacks.  Make  air  holes  then  store  in   a   corner   of  the  garden  -­‐  lovely  leaf  mould  will  develop  ready  to  top-­‐ dress  your  shrubs  &  plants  next  year. Lift  crowns  of  Lily  of  the  Valley  to   pot   up   for  an  early  indoor  scented   display  -­‐  you  will   enjoy  these  when  you  (finally)  get  to  sit  down  and   relax!

Have a good November - see you next month ... Page 18


THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

French Life, Food & Drink... Vive la Difference

by Gilly  Hunt  

With Autumn  in  full  swing   and   winter  approaching  most   of  us  will   soon   be  going  into  “winter  mode”.    We  will  be  exchanging  lazy  days   sitting  in  the  sun,  visitors  and  outings  to  the  beach,  with  a  roaring   wood   burner,  a  glass   of   mulled  wine   (for   those  that   drink)  and   a   good  book. Preparing  yourself  for  winter   can  be  quite  a  long  task  -­‐  the  ordering   of   wood,   oil   or   gas   to   keep   you   warm,   stocking   up   on   a   few   essentials  just  in   case   of  being  marooned  by  snow  or  rain  for  a  few   days   and  of  course  English  books   and   DVDs.     Many  of   the   larger   libraries  in   the  Deux-­‐Sèvres  have  English  books  you  can  borrow  and   also  DVDs.    If  you   live  near  a  smaller  one,  then  they  will  often  order   in  upon  request.   After  the  clocks  go  back  we  all  tend  to  shut  ourselves  away  as  soon   as   it  becomes  dark.  We  might  have  a  meal  with  friends,  but  for  the   most   part  we  stay  in  snuggled  up  to  the  wood  burner  with  the  cat,   dog  and   oh   yes   husband   or   other   half!     But   spare   a   moment   to   think  about  all   the   people  who   live  here  alone.    Winter   is  an  even   harder  time  for   them,  whether  they  be  French  or  English  –  make  it   your   aim  this   year   to   visit   or  ask   out   anyone  you  know  that   lives   alone  and  in  the  harsher  days  of  winter,  just  give  them  a  reassuring   call  to  see  if  they  are  OK  –  I  am  sure  they  will  appreciate  it. Winter  is   also  a  great  time  for  improving   our   French.    I  know   that   the  best   way  of  improving   French  is   to   speak  it,  so  make  an  effort   to   find   a   local   class,   join   a   Franglais   group   (French   and   English),   there  are  many  in  the  Deux-­‐Sèvres  and   most  are  free.    If  you  do  not   have  one  near  you  then  why  not   set   one  up?      I  am  sure  the   local   Mairie  would   help  you  and  you  could  advertise  it  in  ‘ The  DSM’!     Or   of  course  invite  your   French   neighbours  over  for  a  coffee  or  aperitif     -­‐  go  for  it;  it’s  not  nearly  as  scary  as  you  might  think! Have   you   noticed   that   often   when   the   roads  are   being  repaired,   they  put  up  signs  that  say  they  will  be  finishing  on  say,  Wednesday   afternoon   here   in   France,   however   in   England   they   usually   say   Autumn  2012...  what  a  difference! Have  a  great  November  and  enjoy  the  luxury  of  being  able  to  drive   along   our   lovely  country  lanes   in   the   autumn/winter   sunshine   –   you  may  become  stuck  behind   a  tractor   or   horse,  but  in  my  view  it   certainly  beats  being  stuck  on  the  M25! Vive  la  Difference.  

Contact ‘The  Deux-­‐Sèvres  Monthly’ La  Bartière,  79130,  Secondigny. Telephone:  05  49  70  26  21   or  email:  info@thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr or see our website: www.thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

“A shameless Chablis with hints of oyster shell, star fruit and jabuticaba – frabjous!” by John  Sherwin It   wouldn’t   surprise   me,  unfortunately,   to   see   a   wine   described   thus   in   any   of   the   zillion   wine   magazines   that   are   littering   the   planet.   You   see   this   guff  not  only  in  print,   but   hear   it   at  any  wine   gathering.     If   the   speaker   is   male,   a   cravat   is   usually  involved;   if   female,  loop  earrings  and   an   oversized   cigar.   Below   I   give   you   a   step-­‐by-­‐step   guide  to  how  you  can  play  these  bumptious  show-­‐ offs   at   their   own   sad   game   –   and   just   possibly   win. There  are  three  kinds  of  people  who  use  weird  and  wonderful  wine   descriptions:   the   aesthetes   for   whom   the   goal   is   to   create   a   satisfying  poem  which  encapsulates  what  the  wine  means  to  them;   the   communicators  who   wish   to  share  their  view  of  the   objective   structure   of   a   wine;   and   the   aforementioned   show-­‐offs.   The   aesthete,  as  long  as  he  doesn’t  start   scaring  the  horses,  can   be  left   alone,  with   a  gentle  nod  and  smile.  The  communicator,  if   a  good   one,   can   educate   effectively.  The   show-­‐off   is   the   real   danger   to   shipping   as   he   makes   otherwise   intelligent   people   feel   straw-­‐ brained  and  dim-­‐witted. The  show-­‐off  has  neither  the  taste  of  the  aesthete  nor  the  rigour  of   the  communicator:  it’s  all  barnyard  banter.  This  is  his  weakness  and   your   strength   –   but   it   is   imperative   you   get   in   first.   Banish   all   thoughts  of  “oh   that’s  nice”.  Vocabulary  is  vital:  as  imposing  as   a   church,  as  elusive  as  the  Scarlet  Pimpernel,  and  as  far   as  possible   multi-­‐tasking. WHITES Colour:  use  pale-­‐,  straw-­‐,  or  golden-­‐yellow.  If  they  exist,  or  you  think   you  can  get  away  with  it,  add  with  greenish  tints,  while  squinting  your   eyes.  Get  this  in  first  and  don’t  push  it  –  move  right  on  to… Smell:  you  can’t  go  far  wrong  with   fragrant  or,  on  the  other   hand,   disappointing  nose.   If  the  former,  sniff  again   and   nod;  if  the  latter,   grimace  sympathetically  and  move  on  to… Taste:  mineral,  citrus,  white  flowers.  The  latter  is  particularly  useful   –  no-­‐one  really  knows  what  white  flowers   smell   like.  Add  vanilla  if   it  tastes  a  bit  oaky,  and  then  ‘…a  bit  too  much  wood…?’. REDS Colour:  rich,  deep,  fine.  Steer  clear  of  anything  more  concrete. Smell:  red  and/or   black   berries,  sous-­‐bois  (this   is  great,   means   ‘undergrowth’,  but  say  it  ‘soo-­‐bwa’  –  red  wine  equivalent  of  ‘white   flowers’),  spicey  (don’t  specify),  pleasant  though  unexceptional. Taste:  essential  to  talk  of  tannins  and  their  balance  with  acids.  Fine   balance,   good   tannins   but   if   a   wine   is   obviously   naff   it   will   undoubtedly  be   due  to  acid  and  tannins  just  not  right.  And  no-­‐one   can  argue  with  fullish  as  a  little  grace-­‐note.   Overall:   (For   both   reds   and   whites.)   This  is   your   moment.  Keep   calm,  don’t  blow  it.  For  an  obviously  decent  bottle  we’re  looking  at   finesse,   complexity,   great   length   (if   the   taste   lingers).   Lesser   bottles,  think  honest,  robust.  You  might  also  add  your  thoughts  on   food   matching.  Go  precise  yet  obscure.  For  dry  whites,  Bass  Soufflé   with  Prawn  Sauce,  for  reds,  Daube  à  la  Provençale. If  this  doesn’t  lead  to  collapse  of  stout,  show-­‐off  party,  I’ll   eat   my   hat  –  with  a  nice  Beaujolais!

John Sherwin, French Wine Tours Email: johnsherwin@orange.fr ~ www.french-wine-tours.com

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

French Village Diaries

by Jacqueline  Brown.

As we   are   nearing   the   11th     November,   I   have   been   thinking   back   to   what   will   always   be   my   most   memorable   French   village   dining  experience. When   we   first   arrived   here   the   public   holiday  of   11th   November   was   always   celebrated   with   a   community  meal   that  was  mainly   frequented   by   the   villagers   old   enough  to  remember   life  during  the  war.    Sadly  due  to  a  lack  of   attendance,   unfortunately   caused   by   the   demise   of   the   older   villagers  it   hasn’t   happened  for   a   number   of  years.     As  a  young   family   newly   arrived   in   France   it   was   the   first   village   meal   we   attended  and  so  remains  an  important  event  in  our  French  life.   Following   on   from   the   s m a l l   s e r v i c e   o f   remembrance   that   (thankfully)   still   takes   place   by   the   village   war   memorial,   that   is   d e c o r a t e d   w i t h   flowers  and  flanked  by   flag   holding   veterans   for   the   occasion,   the   meal   started   with   an   aperitif.     A  killer  kir;  a   combination   of   white   wine  with   a  rather  large  dose  of  some  very  sweet,  very  alcoholic   peachy  stuff.    I   have   since  learned,  from   painful   experience,   that   this   is   to   be   avoided   at   all   costs   if   dignity  is   to   be   maintained.     Seated  on  long  tables  laid  out  in  the  Salle  des  fêtes,  the  first  course   of   a   lovely   homemade   seasonal   vegetable   soup   arrived.     The   serving  bowl  was  left  at  the  end  of  the  communal  table  and  passed   down   as   we   all   helped   ourselves.   As   newcomers   we   were   encouraged  to   have  seconds,   which   we  did   with   pleasure.     This   was   also   where   we   discovered   that   although   the   French   eat   far   more  bread  than  we  do  and  like  it  to  accompany  every  meal,  they   do  not  eat  bread  with  soup! The   soup   was   followed   by  the   fish   course  of   scallops   in   a  white   sauce,  again  delicious  and  a  first  for  me,  as  until  moving  to  France  I   didn’t  have  a  particularly  adventurous  diet.    As  the  meal  moved  on   the  inclusive  wine  started  to  flow,  which  helped  as  we   were  trying   to   make   conversation,   persuade  a   fussy  four   year   old  to   at   least   ‘try’  the  food  and   keep  him  entertained  between   the  courses.    The   ‘main’  meat  course  then  arrived;  a  simple  yet  tasty  roast  pork  dish,   and   again   we   were   encouraged   to   take   more,  which   we   did.   A   couple  of  hours  had  passed,  our  neighbours  were  by  now  slipping   into  incomprehensible   patois  and  our  4  year   old   was  very  bored,   having  never  spent   this  long  at  a  table  in  his  life,  although  to  be  fair   neither   had  we  and  it  was  still  a  long  way  from  being  over.    The   sorbet,   a   refreshing   and   delicate   pear   flavour   was   squeezed   in   before   the   arrival   of   the   cheese  course.     A   goats  cheese  from   a   local   farm.     We  were   nearly   there,  just   the   pastries  for   dessert,   fresh   from  the  village   boulangerie,  to   find   room   for   and   funnily   enough  we  had  no  trouble  persuading  our  son  to  eat  these!     It  was  without  a  doubt,  a  truly  memorable  five  hours  spent   eating   what  felt  like  five  days  worth  of  food;  vive  la  France. Follow  Jacqui’s  blog  at  hZp://www.frenchvillagediaries.com

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Reader’s Restaurant Reviews

Thank you   to   Gilly   Hughes-­‐Jones   for   this   month’s   Restaurant   Review:  Au  Bon  Accueil,  St  Generoux.    Tel:  05  49  67  55  35 The   Au  Bon  Accueil,  is  aptly  named,  and  is  one  of  two  restaurants   in  the  small   village  of  St   Generoux   which  is   in   North  Deux-­‐Sèvres   between  Parthenay  and  Thouars,  just  off  the  D938. The   restaurant  is  famous  for   its  menu  du   jour  and   at  only  11  euros   it  is   truly  value  for   money.     There  are  five  courses   in  all,  you  start   with   a  mixed  plate  of  salads,  then  on   to  homemade  pate,  quiche,   vegetable  of  the  season  or  fish,  followed  by  the  main  course  which   can   be  any  form  of  meat  or  fish  on  a  Friday;    then  there  is  a  tray  of   local   cheeses   to   choose   from,   before  finishing  up   with   usually   a   choice  of  between  four  and  six  desserts.    There  is  a  bottle  of  house   wine  included   in  the  price.    Coffee  is  offered  but  is  not  included  in   the  price. The  restaurant  is  always  full  with  it  being  a  favourite  lunch  stop  for   workmen.     It  is  clean,  the  food  is  freshly  cooked  and  the  service  is   speedy  and   friendly.     The   restaurant   being   situated   in   a   lovely   village   with   the   river   Thouet   flowing   through   it,  also   provides   a   welcome  setting  for   a   post   lunch   stroll   to   work  off   some  of   the   calories! They  are   open   in   the   evening   as  well,   for   which   I  would   advise   booking,   as   it   is  so  popular.    For  lunch  time   just  turn  up  between   12  and  1  and  you  should  find  a  table.    Bon  Appetit!

RESTAURANT REVIEWS... If you have positive restaurant experiences to share, we would love to print them here. Please email to: info@thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr for inclusion into future issues.

Contact ‘The  Deux-­‐Sèvres  Monthly’ La  Bartière,  79130,  Secondigny. Telephone:  05  49  70  26  21   or  email:  info@thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr or see our website: www.thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr

November’s Recipe:  Lemon  Cheese  Cake Ingredients: • 250g  butter  biscuits  crushed • 125g  butter • 410g  condensed  milk  non  sugar • Juice  and  grated  rind  of  a  lemon • 250g  mascarpone • 125g  caster  sugar • 1/2  pint  lemon  or  lime  jelly Method:-­‐ 1. Melt  the  butter  and  pour  over  the  crushed  biscuits. 2. Put  in  a   dish  and  place  in  the  fridge  until   set.    Do  not  press   too  firmly  as  biscuit  base  will  be  difficult  to  cut. 3. Make  up  the  jelly  and  leave  to  cool.  When  cool,  put  juice  and   grated  rind  into  the  jelly. 4. Whisk   the   milk   and   sugar   until   frothy,   then   add   the   mascarpone  and  mix  until  smooth. 5. Pour  the  jelly  into  the  cream  mixture  and  stir  until  smooth.   6. Pour  over  the  biscuit  and  place  in  the  fridge  to  set. This  is  best  to  be  made  the  day  before  required. Thank  you  to   Eileen  Pearce  who  agreed  to  share  this  recipe  with   us.     Other  great  recipes  can  also  be  found  on  the  ‘Fave  Recipes’   Facebook  page.

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

French Adventures... by Sarah  Bugield

In 2005  we  first   contemplated  a  permanent  move  to  France.  We  were   living  in  Liskeard,  Cornwall.    A  large  family  with  four   children  at   home   and   three   that   visited   on   weekends   and   school   holidays.     Of   the   children   at   home   three   were   teenagers   at   various   stages   of   high   schooling.     After   a  trip  to  France   and   some  thorough  research  and   several  family  conferences  we  decided  the  time  was  not  right.   By  2008,  now  with  only  one  child  at  home  of  primary  school  age,  we   decided  on  a  move  to  Australia  after  being  offered  a  work  sponsorship.   Moving  initially  to  the  northern  Territory  and  then  later  to  Queensland   and  Tasmania.     Fast   forward  now  to  2012  and  we  are  finally  making   our  permanent  move  to  France... Despite  having  made   an  international  move  before,  this  one  feels   so   much  more  exciting  and  we   have  been  counting  down  the  days  since   our   house   purchasing   trip   to   France   this   April.     After   months   of   internet  property  searching,  we  had  lined  up  viewings,  made  the  travel   arrangements  and  we  spent  a  week  in  Poitou-­‐Charentes.     We   found   our  new  home  on  the  first  day. It  is  a  renovation  project   consisting   of   a   house   approximately   100   years   old   with   barn   attached   in   Chirac,   a   beautiful   commune   about   5   km   from   Chabanais.    We  have  a   lot   of   work   to   do   at   the   house,   especially   in  the  barn  which  has   c ira w home in Ch a   piece   of   the   roof   Above: Our ne missing  apparently  due  to   heavy  snow  fall  last  winter.  Undaunted  we  continue  with  our  plans. We  were  amazed  at  the  ease  and  efficiency  of  the  property  purchase   despite  being  overseas.  The  notaire  in  Chabanais  was  very  patient  and   assisted  us  greatly,  as  did  Darren  Pitts  our  immobilier,  who   answered   all   our   questions  and  linked  us  up   with  the   contacts  we   needed   to   proceed   with  money  transfers,  devi’s,  utility  connections,  translations   etc. With  our  house  purchase  made  our  next  challenge  was  to  get  artisans   to  provide  devi’s  for  the  most   urgent  part   of   the  renovation,  the  roof   repair   or   replacement.  Obviously  being  overseas  we  were  reliant   on   emails  and  well-­‐timed   telephone  calls.   As  I  write  we   have  still   only   managed  to  obtain  one  devi   which  we  need  to  revisit  after  our  arrival,   when  we  can  meet  the  artisan  on  site  to  discuss  the  options. Our   learning   curve   is   huge   and   will   continue   to   be   so   for   several   months,  if  not  years  to  come.  Aiming  to  integrate  as  much  as  possible  I   signed  up  to  a  ten  week  French  language  course  at  the  local  university   here   in   Tasmania,  and   having  just   completed   20   hours   of   tuition   I   realise   I   still   have   a   very  long   way  to   go,  but   I   am  determined   to   immerse  myself  into  the  culture   and  the  community  from  day  one.     I   can’t  wait  to  arrive  and   try  out  my  new  language  skills  however  small   they  may  be  at  this  stage. A  great  source  of  information,  inspiration  and  networking  has  been  the  

various French  forums  we  have  come  across  and  become  members  of.     I   am   constantly   in   awe   of   the   amazing   people   who   make   transformations  to   their  lifestyles  and  French  properties  in  challenging   circumstances.    I  have  had  many  offers  of  meet  ups  for  coffee  and  local   information   on  exercise  classes,  markets,  etc.  from  my  new   network   friends  for  which  I  am  extremely  grateful. Our   move   is   not   without   its   challenges.   Anyone   who   has   ever   researched  or  experienced   an   international   move  will  know  that  the   development  of  lists,  sub-­‐lists  and  scanned  folders  of  documents  is  just   the  beginning.  It  is  a  well-­‐planned,  logistical  exercise  which  tests  your   endurance,  patience  and  stamina. So   the   easy  part   is  over   -­‐   choosing  and  buying  the  house,  now   to   decide   what  is  worth  shipping   half   way  around  the   world.     Sounds   pretty   straight   forward   but   in   time   you  end  up  questioning  every  item  in   detail,  even  your  clothes! Then   there   are   our   two   Australian   cattle   dogs.   ‘Our   boys’   as   we   call   them.   They   are   brothers   and   only   three   years   old,   so   still   our   babies   really.   We   have   only   ever   moved   them   by   driving   interstate   within   Australia   so   this   will   be   their   first   flight   experience.     We   are   like   apprehensive   parents   watching   our   children   go  off  on  their  first  overseas   adventure.  The  preparation   for   their   move   began   before   we   could   even   Above: ‘Our Boys’ think   of  booking  our  flights.  It  starts   with   health   checks   and   vaccination   schedules   and   then   progressed   to   finding  a   reputable  pet  courier   company.     As  we  are  entrusting  our   very  special   cargo  to  them,  scrutiny  and  research  of  their  reputation,   work  practices  and  the   conditions   for   our   boys  to  travel   in   was  the   biggest   priority.   Finally   they   are   medically  checked,  vaccinated   and   they  have  their  special  boxes  for  the  flights. Both  we,  and  our  older  children  who  live  in  the  UK,  are  excited  that  we   will   be   living  nearer   to   them  again.     Although  they  have  had  some   great  travel  opportunities  whilst  visiting  us  in   Australia,  such  as  whale   watching  and  snorkelling  in  the  Great  Barrier   Reef,  the   distance  has   been  difficult  at  times.  The  internet,  Skype  and  social  media  fills  a  big   gap   but   the   physical   separation   can   be   hard   to   endure   on   special   occasions  when  a  family  should  be  together:  birthdays,  Christmas  etc.     With  the  last   of   our  boxes  packed  and  final   goodbyes  made,  we  left   Australia  on  23rd  September  and  took  up  residence  in  our   new  French   home  on  25th  September  ready  for  our  new  adventure  and  our   new   life  in  France.   I  will  be  pursuing  a  new  career  pathway  in  France  as  a  writer  after  27   years  as  a  nurse  and   mother.     I  am   looking  forward  to  making  many   new   French  friends  and  British  expat  friends  and  would   especially   love  to  hear  from  anyone  in  the  Chirac/Chabanais  area. Sarah  can  be  contacted  by  email:  sarahbutfield@y7mail.com

Thank you to Sarah Butfield for sharing her ‘French Adventure’ with us and we wish her well with her new life here in France ! If you would like to share your story, please email it to info@thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr for consideration.

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Motoring... The Practical Estateby Helen  Tait-­‐Wright

Even confirmed  petrol  heads   like  us  need   a   “sensible”  car,  and  with   that   in  mind   we  have  just  upgraded  our  Audi  A6  Avant   from   a  2002   model  to  a  2007  model. For  those  of   you  that  don’t  know,  the  “Avant”  is  Audi’s  term  for  what   we   Brits   call   an   “Estate   car”,   what   the   Americans   call   a   “Station   Wagon”,     and   the  French   a  “Break”.     So   where  do   all   these  names   actually  originate  from? In   England,   the   early   incarnations   of   the   estate   car   were   the   aristocractic   “Shooting   Brakes”   built   first   in   the   early   1900’s   to   transport  country  gentlemen  to  their  hunts,  along  with  their  firearms,   provisions  and  dogs.    The  shooting  brake  was  a  speciality  of  the  Albion   Motor   Company  in   Glasgow,   and   in   1908   The   Commercial   Motor   described  their  vehicle  as  having  "seats  for  eight  persons  as  well  as  the   driver,  whilst   four   guns  and   a  large   supply  of   cartridges,  provisions   baskets  and  a  good  'bag'  can  be  carried.” Many  other  manufacturers  such  as  Rolls  Royce,  Aston  Martin,  Bentley   and   Jaguar  also  produced  Shooting  Brakes,  although   these  were  not   mass  produced,  but   custom-­‐built   luxury  coupes  altered   for   hunting   use.    Generally  all  these  vehicles  had  exposed  wooden  bodies. By  1930’s   the   term   “Estate   car”   was   in   use   in   England   as   it   was   recognised   that   these   vehicles   were   useful   for   general   purposes   around  the  “estate”,  carrying  both  master,  guests  and  servants,  as  well   as   for   hunting.     In   France,   the  history   is   much   the   same,  but   the   vehicle  was   called  a  “Break  de  Chasse”   (Hunting   Break)  which   has   been   shorterned  to   “Break”.  This  name  is  still  used   by  Peugeot  and   Citroen  today. In  America,  the  origins  of   the  “Station   Wagon”  are  tied   up  with  the   history  of  the  railways,  and  early  vehicles  of  this  type  worked  as  taxi’s   or   “Depot   Hacks”   around   the  stations  and   railway  sidings,  moving   passengers  between  trains. Prior   to   the   mid-­‐1930s,   manufacturers   assembled   the   framing   of   passenger   compartments   of   such   vehicles  in   hardwood,  and   these   vehicles  evolved   from  trucks  rather  than  modified  cars.  They  became   known   as  “Woodies”,  and   by  the  mid-­‐1930s,  wood   bodied   station   wagons  achieved  a  level   of   prestige.  The  vehicles   were   priced  higher   than   regular   cars,   and   were   popular   in   affluent   communities.     Traditionally,  full-­‐sized  American  station  wagons  were  configured   for   six  or  nine  passengers. As  the  Twentieth   century  progressed,  steel  bodies  were  introduced,   but  often  wood  accents  were  retained  as  a  nod  to  the  origins  of  the   cars,  and  in  the  UK,  many  examples  still  had  structural  wooden  frames   right   up   until   the   early   1960’s.  These   cars   are   some   of   the   most   exclusive  and  luxurious  "woodies"  ever  built.    For  those  with  a  smaller   budget,  it   was  possible  to  buy  into   this  heritage  with  the  smaller  and   very  popular   Morris  Minor   Traveller  Estate  which  copied   the  wooden   side  panel  frames  of  larger  designs. Nowadays   most  manufacturers  offer   estate  versions  of   their   cars  as   standard,  and   despite  the  recent   introductions  of  People  carriers  and   Minivans,  the  estate  car  still  offers  the  most  stylish  and  elegant  way  for   a  family  to  travel  with  their  luggage.   PS,  I  have  tried  to  find   out  why  Audi  use  the  word  “Avant”  but  have   been  unable  to  find  an  explanation.    Anyone  know?

Contact Helen  at:  helen@stodel.org.

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

However, I  should  like  to   first   let  you   know  some  developments  on   the   PC   Scam  telephone   calls.  One   of   my  customers   who   suffered   from  the  scam,  received  a  telephone  call  from  a  similar  organisation   stating   that   they   were   investigating   the   Windows   Technical   Department   telephone  call   fraud,  they   had   found   that   he  had  paid   for   the  service  and  that  they  were  in  a  position  to  refund  the  amount   paid  -­‐  all  he   had  to  do  was  give  his  bank  details  and  they  would  do   the   necessary!     Needless   to   say  he   declined   and   requested   that   instead  they  send  him  a  cheque,  at  this  point  the  caller  hung  up.     So   beware  they  are  still  out  there  and  are  very  sneaky.

floppy disk   cleaner   to   keep   them   able   to   read   efficiently   and   reliably. • Still  got   a  ball  type  mouse  -­‐  take  out   the  ball  and  wrap  it  in  sticky   tape   this  should   remove  all   of   the  grease  and   dust,   check   the   rollers   inside   the   "ball   hole"   clean   off   any  dust/fluff   that   has   stuck  to  the  rollers. Annually  : • Check  for  new   Hardware  Drivers  and  any  Firmware  updates  and   install  them  (remember  to  back  up  first). • Check   for   unused   programs   and   data   and   uninstall/remove   them. • With  the  PC  turned   off,  open   the  PC  case  and  check  all  Fans  for   dust  and  noise,  clean  them  carefully,  check  heat  sinks  and  do  the   same,  any  holes   to   allow   air   to   circulate  should   be   thoroughly   cleaned   to   prevent   blockages.  Ensure   that   the   PC   is   not   over   heating,  most   BIOS  settings   have  a  temperature   section,  check   that  the  CPU  etc  is  running  in  the  correct  temperature  range.

I think  of  a  Personal  Computer  as   a  precision  instrument,  a  complex   set   of   components   that   work   together   with   even   more   complex   software.  I  entrust  my  important  documents,  photographs  and  other   information   to   this   device,   so   it   is   important   to   me   that   it   runs   efficiently  and  reliably.    To  ensure  that   this  is  the  case  I  try  to  prevent   problems  rather  than  cure  them  -­‐  Preventative  Maintenance.    This  is   a  simple  plan   of  measures  to  take  at   regular   intervals  that   will  help   keep  my  PC  running  at   its  best.     Some  are  run  daily,  others  weekly   and   others  less  frequently,  many   of   the  things   that  I  have  detailed   over  the  past  12  articles.

Think of   these   measures  as   protecting   your   investment   in   the   PC   itself,   but   more   importantly   you   are   protecting   your   data   and   ensuring  that  it  is  safe.    It  is  a  known  fact  that  PCs  are  easily  replaced,   your  data  is  not.     I  consider  my  PCs  are  just  like   my  car,  and  I  would   no  more  buy   a  car   and   never   do   any  Preventative  Maintenance  or   ignore   the  annual  service  requirements  and  feel   safe  in  it.     I  check   tyres,   water   and   oil   weekly,  brakes   monthly,  I   replace   windscreen   wipers  and  filters  regularly  and  have   a  professional  service  annually.     This  way  I   know   that   I  am  safe  and   that   my  passengers  and   other   road  users  are  too.

Preventative Maintenance  Check  List   Daily: • Check  for   Virus   and  Spyware  definitions   install   them  and   run   a   daily  scan  of  your  PC. • Check  for  and   run  Windows  and  other  software  updates,  such  as   Adobe  Reader  and  Java. • Back-­‐up  important  data  you  have  created. Weekly  : • Run  Disk  Clean-­‐up. • Run   Scan   Disk   to   check  the  drive   for   errors   and   mark  any  bad   sectors. • Run   a   hard  disk  Defragmentation   (In  Windows  Vista  and  7  these   are  automatically  set  to  run  weekly). • Physically  clean  your  PC,  screen  and  keyboard  and  mouse  and  of   course  your  printer  and  scanner. Monthly  : • Back-­‐up  your  operating  system  and  settings. • Change  your  password  for  critical  applications  such  as  on-­‐line  banking. • Clean   your   input   devices,   Optical   Drives   collect   dust   so   get   a   drive  cleaner,  the  same  is  true  of  the  good  old  floppy  disks,  use  a  

Many of   the   Daily  and   Weekly  tasks  may  be  automated,   the  time   taken  to   perform  these  simple  items  is  well  invested,  when  you  think   what   time   you   will   lose  if   you   have   to   replace  your   PC   or   try  to   reinstate  the  data  you  have  lost.

How to speed up your PC

by Ross  Hendry

How to  protect  your  PC:    Preventative  Maintenance I   hope   you   have   had   success   following   the   last   12   articles   on   speeding  up  your  PC.  In  this  article  I  will  advise  you  how  to  keep  your   PC  working  efficiently.

I provide  an   annual   check  for   my  customers,  it  normally  takes   less   than  a  hour   and  I  give  them  peace  of   mind  that   their   PC  is  running   well   and   advise   them  of  any  problems  that  may  occur   and   seek  to   anticipate   them  and   take  the   necessary  remedial  action.    Why  not   see   if  your  PC  support  company  does  the  same,  I  am  sure   that   it   is   worth  the  cost   of  an  hour  or   so  a  year  to  have  peace  of  mind,  after   all   it  is  far  less  than  an  annual  service  on  your  car! Ross   Hendry   is   the   proprietor   of   I n t e r f a c e   C o n s u l t i n g   a n d   Engineering,  who  has  over  42  years   experience   in   Communications,   Computer   Technology   and   Direct   Marketing.   (See   advert   below   for   more  information).

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A-Z of the Communes in the Deux-Sèvres A-Z of the Communes of the by Sue  Burgess Deux-Sèvres. CHAMPEAUX The   little   town   of   Champeaux   dominates   the   confluence   of   the   Egray  and  one  of   the  tiny  streams  that  flow  into  it   from  the  ponds   of  Petit-­‐Chêne.    Some  think  the  stone  blocks  scattered  in   the   valley   of  Rochefollet  are  the  remains  of  a  dolmen. Champeaux  used  to  be  part  of  the  feudal  lands  of   Coudray  Salbart.   The  parish   depended  on  the  archpriest  of  Saint  Maixent.  The  parish   priest  was  nominated  by  the  Bishop    of  Poitiers. The  name  of  the  commune  of  Champeaux  can  be  found   as  early  as   the  10th   century  in  the  map  work  Saint  Maixent.     In  the  mid   17th     century  there  were  9  small  holdings  and  a  windmill. CHANTECORPS Chantecorps  is  situated  in  the  canton  of  Menigoute.  The  commune   has   about   330   inhabitants.   The   French   commune   which   is   the   farthest  from  Chantecorps  is  Bonifacio. A  VOIR  /  MUST  SEE • The   painted   fresques  in   the  choir   of   St   Philibert's   church.  The   fresques  were  painted  in  medieval  style  by  Mme  Marie  Baranger   in   1941   and   they   tell   the   story   of   Saint-­‐Girault   de   Salles,   the   founder  of  the  Abbey  of  the  Chateliers. • The   Cistercian   abbey   was   founded   in   1191  and   closed   in  1791.     Today,  only  a  few  stones  remain  of  the  abbey  and  the  site  where   the  abbey  stood  has  been  turned  into  a  farm.   • There  is  also  a  fountain  named  after  Saint-­‐Girault   de  Salles,  the   hermit  and  preacher  who  died  here  in  1120.

Ch - La Chapelle Ba

CHANTELOUP Chanteloup is  situated  in  the  canton   of  Moncoutant.  There  are  980   Chanteloupais   and   Chanteloupaises.     The   river   Thouaret   crosses   the   commune.   The   name   Chanteloup   indicates   the   presence   of   wolves  in  the  surrounding  countryside  in  medieval  times. The   Church   of   Chanteloup,   St   Léger   Church,   was   given   by   Guillaume   the   bishop   of   Poitiers   to   the   Abbey   of   the   Trinity   (Mauleon)  between  1117  and  1140.    A  small  sculpture  of  a  wolf,  on   the  left  of  the  bays  of  the  south  side  of  the  bell  tower  reminds  us  of   the  time  when  the  wolf  was  heard  singing.   There  are  11   places  with  «  Chapelle  »  as   part  of  their  name  in  the   Deux-­‐Sèvres  and  a  staggering  45  in  Vienne  (86).  The  second  part  of   the   name   can   make   reference   to   a   Saint,   or   to   the   family   who   owned  the  land  or  again  to  a  nearby  geographical  feature. LA CHAPELLE BATON La  Chapelle  Baton  is  a  commune  of  the  Deux  Sèvres    situated  in  the   canton  of  Champdeniers   St  Denis.     The  2009  census  recorded  363   inhabitants. A  VOIR  /  MUST  SEE The   Chateau   de   Maillé,   a   château  dating   from  the   late  16th   and   early  17th  centuries,    is  a  listed  historical  monument.  The  château   is  private  and   not   open   for   visits.  The   seigneury  belonged  to   the   Eschalard   family   who   originally   came   from   Parthenay.   In   1646   Maillé   came   into   the   hands   of   Jean   de   Caillo   and   remained   the   property   of   his   family   until   the   revolution.     The   house   is   surrounded   by   walls,   there   are   two   circular   towers   which   house   pigeon  lofts.

More ‘A-­‐Z  of  the  Communes  of  the  Deux-­‐Sèvres.’ next  month...

Building & Renovation... Burgundy for Christmas?

UPD ATE

As I  write  this   in  preparation   for   November’s  issue,  there’s   a  chill  in  the  air  and  pumpkin  soup  on  the  stove.     Any  spare   hours  recently  have  been  taken   up  with   processing  fruit  -­‐  plums,   pears,   peaches,   apples,   figs   and   even   some   grapes,   sadly   not   enough   to   make   wine,   and   some   recipes   have   been   more   successful  than  others!

Experimentation has   not   been   confined  to  the  kitchen  –  in  the   workshop  we  have  been  preparing  Christmas  and  gift  items.    We   needed  to  decide  whether  to  make  our  items  entirely  by  hand  or   buy  pre-­‐cut   shapes?     We  opted  to  make  our  own,  hand  painted   using  Annie’s  paint.     We  have  also  added  a  range  of  signs  which   are  made  to  order  –  for  any  occasion.     Enjoying  this  so   much   we  have  decided  to  add  “Sign   making”  and  “Decoupage  and  Gilding”  workshops  to  our  schedule  for  November. Annie  has  been  experimenting  too,  introducing  two  new  colours,  English  Yellow  and  Burgundy   (we  have  ordered  both)  and  working  on  her  new  book  (only  available  through  stockists).     Most   of  the  photos  are  taken  in   her  French  house,  so  we   are  really  excited  to  get  our   hands  on  this.     At  our  second  open  morning  last  month   we   were  amazed  at  how  far   people  would   travel  to   browse  our  hand  painted  furniture,  discuss  their  projects  and  head  off  on  a  mission  with  paint   in   hand.     If  you  have   not  yet  discovered  what  all  the  fuss  is  about,  do  drop  in  and  see  us,  the   paint   has   almost   no   odour   so  you  can   tackle   all   your   indoor   projects,  walls,  woodwork  and   floors,  or  maybe  just   enjoy  transforming  a  piece   of   furniture.    Come  and  see  us,  have  a  coffee   and  leave  inspired.    For  details  of  our  opening  hours,  courses  and  paints  please  contact  Sue  or   Rik  Newell  at  La  Deuxième  Chance.  (See  our  advert  opposite). Page 27


THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

ARTISANS &  TRADESMEN... Do  you  have  any  top  tips  you  can  share  with  our  readers?       We  would  love  to  include  them  in  this  section!

Short editorials  can  be  offered  to  advertisers,   free  of  charge.

For more  details,  please  see  the  ‘Written  Contributions’  page   on  our  website:  www.thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr

Please call  Sarah  to  find  out  more.

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Business, Finance & Property... Ask Amanda.

Sitting in  my  office,  catching  up   on   a   little  admin   whilst   the   rain   is   falling   outside,   I   find   myself   checking  up  on  renewal  dates  of  certain  necessary   items  and  policies  regarding  house  and  home.     A   thought   springs  to  mind.     If   I  were  to   ask  you,   when   does   your   car   next   need   its   control   technique,  or   when  is  the  house  insurance   due,   or   perhaps   when   does   your   driving   licence   or   passport  need  renewing,  I  am  sure  that  you  would   quickly   be   able   to   find   the   answer,   with   perhaps   just   a   little   rummaging  through  a  drawer  to  two. If  on  the  other  hand  I  asked: 1.   How  and  where  is  my  money  currently  invested? 2.   How  has  it  performed  over  the  last  12  months? 3.   How  easily  can  I  get  hold  of  my  money  should  my    circumstances   change? 4.   Are  my  investments  tax  efficient  based  on  my  current    residency? 5.   How  much  will  my  pension  be  when  I  retire? 6.   Has  my  situation  changed  since  I  last  saw  a  financial  planner?   If   you  could   not  easily  answer  these  questions   or  lay  your  hands  on   the  information  about   your   fiscal  health,  perhaps  it  is  time  for  a  free   financial  review? At  The  Spectrum  IFA   Group,  my  colleagues  and   I  like   to  ensure  that   our   customers   are   kept   aware   of   their   position   in   terms   of   investments,  inheritance   and   the   current   tax   legislation   in   France   that  could  change  their  financial  wellbeing. For  a  free  review  or  if   y o u   h a v e   a n y   questions   on   your   finances,  you  can  find   me   at   La   Grande   Gallery  in  Civray  most   Tuesday   mornings,   the   Café   des   Belles   Fleurs   in   Fenioux   on   Thursday   lunchtimes   or  I  can  always  come   and  see  you  at  home. Please   email   or   call   me   using   the   details   below   if   I  can   be   of   any  assistance  to  you.

USEFUL FRENCH  VOCABULARY  -­‐  FINANCIAL agio  (m)  -­‐  bank  charge ancien  solde  (f)  -­‐  previous  balance assurance  (f)  -­‐  insurance assurance-­‐vie  (f)  -­‐  life  insurance assuré    -­‐  insured s’assurer  -­‐  verb  -­‐  to  take  out  insurance   assureur  (m)  -­‐  insurer   bancaire  -­‐  banking banque  (f)  -­‐  bank

chèque (m)  -­‐  cheque chèque  de  banque  (m)  -­‐  banker’s  draft chèque  sans  provision  (m)  -­‐  bounced  cheque chèquier  (m)  -­‐  cheque  book code  confidentiel  (m)  -­‐  PIN  number code  guichet  (m)  -­‐  branch  code compte  (m)  -­‐  account compte  à  terme  (m)  -­‐  deposit  account compte  bancaire  (m)  bank  account compte  courant  (m)  -­‐  current  account compte  d’épargne  (m)  -­‐  savings  account crédit  hypothécaire  (m)  -­‐  mortgage crédit  relais  (m)  -­‐  bridging  loan découvert  (m)  -­‐  overdraft dépôt  (m)  -­‐  deposit endosser  -­‐  verb  -­‐  to  endorse  a  cheque impôt  (m)  -­‐  tax monnaie  (f)  -­‐  coins/change prélèvement  (m)  -­‐  direct  debit prêt  personnel  (m)  -­‐  personal  loan reçu  (m)  -­‐  receipt rejeter  un  chèque  -­‐  verb  -­‐  to  bounce  a  cheque relevé  de  compte  (m)  -­‐  bank  statement remise  (f)  -­‐  remittance retrait  d’argent  (m)  -­‐  withdrawal  of  money solde  (f)  -­‐  account  balance taxe  foncière  (f)  -­‐  property  tax taxe  habitation  (f)  -­‐  habitation  tax virement  (m)  -­‐  bank  transfer

Amanda Johnson,  The  Spectrum  IFA  Group.  Tel:  05  49  98  97  46 Email:  amanda.johnson@spectrum-­‐ifa.com “Ask Amanda” at finance@thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr With Care, You Prosper Amsterdam Luxembourg Lausanne Paris Cote d’Azur Barcelona Costa Blanca Costa del Sol Madrid Rome « The Spectrum IFA Group » is a registered trademark, exclusive rights to use in France granted to TSG Insurance Services S.A.R.L. Siège Social: 34 Bd des Italiens, 75009 « Société de Courtage d'assurances » R.C.S. Paris B 447 609 108 (2003B04384) Numéro d'immatriculation 07 025 332 - www.orias.fr « Conseiller en investissements financiers, référence sous le numéro E002440 par ANACOFI-CIF, association agréée par l’Autorité des Marchés Financiers »www.spectrum-ifa.com

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THE DEUX-SÉVRES MONTHLY

Blevins Franks - Specialists in wealth management for expatriates in France If you are a British expatriate living in France you require highly personalised and specialist advice to ensure your investment strategy is tailor-made for you and your assets are structured as tax efficiently as possible. At Blevins Franks we specialise in providing integrated and detailed tax and wealth management advice to British expatriates in Europe. Blevins Franks are the leading wealth management advisers to UK nationals living abroad. We focus on wealth preservation for our clients, looking to protect the value of your capital and income in ‘real’ terms, after inflation and tax. We offer a global multi-manager investment approach across all major asset classes which we tailor to your specific situation and aims. We have an in-depth knowledge of French tax regulations and law and the opportunities available for compliant tax mitigation. We also fully understand UK taxation and how it interacts with the French rules.

We are committed to developing close, personal and continuing relationships with our clients, so our advice based is on a real, comprehensive and up-to-date understanding of your current circumstances and your future aims. Our integrated tax and wealth management strategies are specifically designed to meet your particular objectives and circumstances. Blevins Franks Financial Management Limited is authorised and regulated by the UK Financial Services Authority for the conduct of investment and pension business. Our local Partner Brad Warden looks after private clients in this area. Brad is professionally qualified and has over 25 years’ experience in the Financial Services industry, both as an Independent Financial Adviser and Life Office Consultant. He holds the Diploma in Financial Planning (DipPFS) and Investment Management Certificate (IMC), and is an Associate Member of the Personal Finance Society (APFS). You can contact Brad on 05 49 75 07 24 or by email at bradley.warden@blevinsfranks.com

The plan we develop and implement for you strikes the optimal balance between delivering the investment returns you are looking for and minimising your liability to tax. Our range of wealth management services includes: • • • • • • • •

Investment management and advice French and international tax planning Estate planning Asset protection Offshore trusts and companies Retirement planning Pensions Tax residency

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www.thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr

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2013 Budget targets wealthiest households

by David  Hardy President   Hollande’s  government   has  just  unveiled  its  first   full  annual   Budget  with  proposed  measures  designed  to  reduce   the  public  deficit   and  reshape  the  French  economy  over  the  next  five  years. Following  this  summer’s  Finance  Amendment  Act,  the  Finance   Bill  for   2013  proposes  further  tax  reforms   aimed   at  reducing  taxation  for  low   income   households   while   requiring   the   top   10%   of   earners   and   households  in  France  to  contribution  more  from  their  income  and  assets   towards  the  public  purse. A  summary  of  the  key  provisions  are  detailed  below: Income  Tax A  new  tax  band  of  45%  will  be  introduced  for  annual  income  in  excess  of   €150,000   per   ‘household   part’.   Additionally,   a   much-­‐heralded   75%   income  tax   rate   is   proposed   on   individual   annual   earned   income   in   excess  of  €1  million. There   are   proposed   changes  to  the   tax   benefits  gained  through  the   ‘household  parts’  system  aimed  at  reducing  tax  breaks  for  the  wealthiest   families. At  the  other  end  of  the  scale  the  lowest  income  households  will  see   a   modest  increase  in   the  standard  deduction  figure  applied  to  annual  tax   bills. Withholding  Tax  on  Interest  and  Dividend  Income The  current  with-­‐holding  tax  rates  of  21%  for  dividend  income  and  24%   for  interest   income  will  be  abolished.  From  the   2012  tax   year,  all  such   income  will  simply  be  added  to  other  household  income  to  be  taxed  at   the  applicable  ‘band  rates’. These  optional  with-­‐holding  rates  currently  only  benefit  households  in   the  30%  tax  bracket  or  higher.  As  a  result,  most  households  will  actually   benefit  from  the  mandatory  taxation  using  the  ‘band  rates’. Taxation  of  Capital  Gains  on  Sale  of  Shares  /Collective  Investments Capital  gains  on  the  sale  of  shares  and  collective  investments,  currently   taxed  at  a  fixed  rate  of  19%,  will  be  added  to  income  and  taxed  at  ‘band   rates’,  with  effect  from  the  2012  tax  year. However,   to   encourage   investors   to   hold   shares   and   collective   investments   over   the  longer   term,   a   system  of   ‘taper   relief’  will   be   introduced  to  reduce  gains  arising,  according  to  the  length  of  ownership. Taxation  of  Capital  Gains  on  Investment  Properties The  Bill  will  introduce  a  20%  reduction,  for  2013  only,  on  the  capital  gain   on  the  sale  of  investment  properties.  This  is  to  encourage  second-­‐home   owners  to   sell   properties   for   re-­‐purchasing   by  owner-­‐occupiers  as   a   main  residence.

The new  bands  and   rates  will  apply  from  2013  where  total  assessable   assets  exceed  a  threshold  of  €1,310,000. With  the  government  holding  overall  majorities  in  both  chambers  of  the   French   parliament,   there   are   unlikely  to   be   significant   amendments   before  the  Bill  passes  into  law. For   an   assessment   of   the   potential   impact   of   the   French   Budget   measures  on   your  own  personal  circumstances  it  is  best  to  take  advice   from  a  French   financial  planning  expert,  who  will   be  able  to  check  all   relevant  tax   breaks  are  being  maximised   and  recommend  any  further   beneficial  actions  that  can  be  taken.  

Small colour advert, only 34€ per month or from 31€ per month for 12 months.

Wealth Tax Progressive   tax   bands   are   to   be   retained,   following   last   summers   legislation,  but  with  adjustments  to  the  bands  and  rates.

Contact David  Hardy,  Regional  Manager:  Tel:  05  56  34  71  77

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Unburdening Yourself  of   Unnecessary  Taxes by  David  Nicholls

The global   economic   turmoil   has   hit   the   Euro-­‐ zone  with  a  persistent  wave  of  financial  instability   as   governments   attempt   to   cope  with   copious   amounts   of   debt   by   implementing   several   austerity   measures.     One   of   the   moves   the   French   government   has   taken   to   decrease   its   mounting  debt  is  by  issuing  a  new  regulation  that   demands   people   with   a   certain   income   to   contribute  75%  of  their  earnings  to  tax  charges. French  president  François  Hollande  has  affirmed   how   there  will   be   ‘no   exceptions’  and   wealthy   individuals  will  pay  an  income  tax  rate  of  75%  on   earnings   over   €1   million   and   45%   on   earnings   over  150,000  euro  as  stated  by  the  2013  budget.   Moreover,   there   is   an   additional   ‘wealth   tax’   where   one   with   overall   wealth   exceeding   €3   million  will   be   taxed   an   additional   0.5%.  These   tax   rates   are   set   to  contribute  one-­‐third  of  the   €33   billion   financing   gap   next   year   ―   an   exceptional  measure  that  is  expected  to  subsist   for  at  least  two  years,   as  announced  by  finance  minister  Pierre  Moscovici. This  wealth  tax  has  caused  uproar   among  many  business  owners  who   live  in  France  primarily  because  it  was  perceived  as  driving  high  net   worth  individuals  and  foreign   investors  away.     More  so   than   that,  the   wealth  tax  creates  a  larger  burden  on  individuals  who  must   already   deal  with  unnecessary  taxes  due  to  their  international  lifestyle  or  due   to  their  foreign  investment. Ever   since  its  inception  a  decade   ago,   the  deVere  Group  has   looked   after  expatriates  and  international  investors  to  help  guide  them  in  the   right   financial   path   and   unburden   them   from   unnecessary   taxes.   Benjamin  Franklin  once  said  that   ‘only  death  and  taxes  are  certain  in   life’  and  while  the  firm  does  acknowledge  this,  it  also  strives  to  help  its   clients  mitigate  unnecessary  tax  charges. An   expert  international  financial  adviser  is  your   best   chance  to  invest   your  money,  buy  structured  notes  or  products,  save  for  your  children’s

education or  for  your   retirement  while  avoiding  a  percentage  of  your   funds  being  lost   to  avoidable   tax  charges.  Professional  IFAs     as  such   have  a  thorough  knowledge   of   the   volatile   global   markets  and  they   can  help  guide  you   in   investment   and  saving  schemes  with  ideal  tax   charges  according  to  your  unique  situation. The   French   government   has   stated   that   more   than   a   monetary   contribution,   this   wealth   tax   is   a   ‘symbolic   gesture’   ―   a   sign   of   ‘patriotism’   during   a   turbulent   economic   time   for   the   country.   However,   the   75%   wealth   tax   has   been   seen   as   an   exaggerated   request  by  many  high  net  worth  individuals  and  they  are  now  left  with   two  drastic  options:  decline  one’s  citizenship  of  the  country  or  pay  the   high  tax  rate.   deVere  Group  clients  however,  can  take  one  small  step  that  will  plunge   them  into  a  world  of  professional   guidance  so  that  they  can  pay  the   taxes  they  are  due  to  pay,  while  avoiding  the  unnecessary  charges  that   often  come  with  an  internationally  led  life.

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Winterising your pool?

by Brian  McHale  

To drain  or  not  to  drain,  that  is  the  question?

Last year’s   severe  winter  left   a   lot   of  devastation  in  its  wake,  not   least   to   swimming   pool   equipment,  with   many  people   suffering   burst   pipes,  split   pumps   and  other   water   related   damage  to  pool   equipment.     Good   business   for   us  pool   companies   :)   but   not   so   good  for   homeowners  especially  when  insurers   invariably  take  the   attitude  that  it  is  ‘negligence’  and  therefore  the  homeowner’s  fault,   EVEN   when   you   have   taken   reasonable   precautions   against   the   ravages  of  winter. This  raises   the  issue  of  the  best  way  to  approach   winterizing  your   pool,  an  issue  which  divides  opinion,  sets  mothers  and  sons  at  odds   and  can  divide  even  the  most  loyal  of   friends.  For   this  reason  I  am   keen  to  make  the  disclaimer  that  the  opinions  raised   in  this  article   are  just  that! For   those   of   you   new  to   pool   ownership   there   are  generally  two   schools   of  thought   when  it  comes  to   ‘shutting  down’  your  pool  for   the  winter. The   traditional   method   is   to   drain  down   the  pool  by  several  feet,   drain   all  the  pipe  works  and  the  pump,  sand  filter  etc.   Chuck   in   a   load   of   ‘Hivernage’   (what’s   that?)   and   hope   for   the   best   before   opening  up   the  pool  six  months  later  to  deal  with  (normally)  frog   soup   and   then  apply  loads  of  ‘choc’  and   other   noxious  chemicals   just  in  time  for  the  kids  to  hop  in…

• • • •

the front.   Dry   the   insides   of   the   pump   with   a   cloth   and,   if   possible,  remove   the   pump  and   store  in   a  dry  and   fairly  warm   area.   If   that   is   not   possible,   wrap   it   in   a   blanket   or   other   insulating  material. Drain  down   the   sand   filter  by  removing  the  bung  at  the  bottom   and  removing  the  glass  lid.   Undo  at  least  one  coupling  of  every  valve/tap  to  allow  the  last  of   the  water  to  dribble  out.   Put  some  blankets  or  other   insulating  material  on   top   of  all   the   pipework  and  the  sand  filter. If   you   have  a  pool   heater   disconnect   the   pipe   to   and  from  the   heater  and  if  there  is  a   drain   down  bung,  undo  it  (many  models   do  not  have   one).  Wrap   the   heater  in   some  insulating  material   and  put  a  secure  bache  over  it.

In the   springtime  it  is  wise  to  open  your  pool  as   early  as  possible.   Dose   with   some   liquid   chlorine   and   backwash   frequently  to   get   your   pool   up  and   running  and   DON’T  chuck  tons  of  supermarket   products  that  you  don’t  really  know  anything  about  in  there. And   please   don’t   be   tempted   to   leave   the   pool   until   one   week   before   you   (or   your   first   tenants!)   arrive   and   expect   some   pool   company  to  perform  miracles! Contact  Brian  McHale,  Vendée  Pools  on:  06  31  17  25  60 or  email:  vendeepools@gmail.com

The ‘modern’   approach   is   to   keep   the   pool   circulating   all   year   round,   albeit   on   a   much   reduced   timing,   keep   your   automatic   dosing   system   going   (which   any   modern   pool   should   have)   and   then   open   up   in   early  spring   to   a   clean,  clear   and   healthy  pool     ready  for  every  one  to  use… You  can  probably  see  which  method  I  am  leaning  towards  and  you   may  be  thinking  that  I  have  a  hidden  agenda  but,  honestly,  I  do  not.   The   old   fashioned   method   is   far   more   profitable   for   pool   companies! I   can  completely  understand  that   people  who   will   not   be  at  their   properties   during   the   winter,  often   for   many  long   months,  might   feel   anxious  about  leaving  the  system  running  but  most  pool  pipes   are   50mm   diameter   and   mostly   underground   so   freezing   like   a   domestic  15mm  pipe  would   be  almost   impossible   if  the  water   is   kept  moving  a  couple  of  times  a  day.     If   you  set  your   pool  timer  to   run   for   several   half   hour   periods   during   the   coldest   part   of   the   night  (say  between  3  and  3.30,  then  5  and  5.30)  you   should   never   experience  freezing  even  during  the  coldest  winters. The  surface  of  the  pool   may  freeze  so  it  is  worthwhile  throwing  in   a   few  plastic  footballs  to  absorb  the  expansion  of  the  ice,  but  this  will   not  affect  circulation  so  long  as  the  water  level  is  kept  normal. If  you  are  anxious  about  potential  power  cuts  and  you  have  nobody   local   who   can   pop   by   to   check  this   out,   or   if   you   simply  don’t   believe   the   above   and   decide   to   go   ahead   and   winterize   in   the   traditional  method,  then  make  sure  to  follow  these  rules: • Run   the  pump  for  several   hours  and  dribble   in  20  litres  of  liquid   chlorine  before  switching  off  power  and  shutting  down. • Drain  down  the  pool  using  the  bottom  drain  to  about  nine  inches   below  the  skimmer. • Cover  the  pool.  Do  not  leave  the  summer   cover  on   underneath   the  winter  cover  as  this  will  shorten  its  lifespan. • Drain   down   the  pump.  Most   pumps  have   a   bung  on   the   front   and   on  the  side,  although  some  models  only  have  one  bung  on  

Contact ‘The  Deux-­‐Sèvres  Monthly’ La  Bartière,  79130,  Secondigny. Telephone:  05  49  70  26  21   or  email:  info@thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr or see our website: www.thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr

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THE DEUX-SÉVRES MONTHLY

Is French farmland going to be the new gold? by Trevor  Leggett,  Chief  Executive The  UK  media  seems  to  be  obsessed   with   farmland  at  the  moment   and   as  the  Deux-­‐Sèvres  has  no  shortage  at   all   of  this   asset  class  I   thought   that   readers   might   find   it   interesting   to   look   at   a   few   statistics. Before   we  do  so  though   it’s  probably  worth   reminding  ourselves   that  of  the  6,000  km2  that  make  up  this  beautiful   department,  over   three  quarters  is  dedicated  to  arable  land. The  soil   and  mild  climate  are  a  huge  attraction   to  farmers  and  we   have  many  clients  and  friends  who  say  that  farming  here  is  as  good   as   anywhere   else   in   the   country.   The   Deux-­‐Sèvres   is   a   rural   department   and  the  population   is  rightly  proud  of  the  produce  it   gives  to  the  rest  of  the  country. 2012  has  seen  the  price  of  UK  farmland  rise  yet  again  (0.4%  in  the   first   three   months)   and   the   well   respected   research   team   at   international   agents   Knight   Frank   have  just   announced   that   they   are  expecting  further  rises  throughout   the  year.     This  means  that  in   one   of   the   toughest   economic   times   for   centuries   farmers   are   having  to  pay  record  amounts  for  the  land  they  need. The   average   value   of   agricultural   land   in   the   UK   is   currently   a   staggering   £6,073   an   acre   or   £15,182.50   per   hectare.     At   an   exchange   rate  of   1.24   euros   to   the   pound   that   equates   to   over   18,800€  per  hectare. Compare   this   to   agricultural   land   prices   here   in   France.     SAFER   figures  show  that  untenanted  farmland  cost  an  average  of  €5,430   per   hectare   last   year   -­‐   that's  almost   one  third   of   the  price!     No   wonder  then  that   many  experts  are  tipping  the  price  of  farmland  in   France  to  rise  substantially  over  the  next  few  years. Leggett  Immobilier  are  currently  marketing  over  100  working  farms   (of  all  types  and  with  or  without  farmhouses)  for  sale  across  France   and   have   seen   a   steady   and   growing   increase   in   interest   from   across  the  channel.    We  would  love  to  add  to  our  portfolio  within   the  Deux-­‐Sèvres. I   saw   a   farmer   quoted   recently   as   saying   that   farmland   is   a   "safehaven"   and  that   "the  world's  population  is  growing  and   that   people  will  always  need  more  food".     Add  in  the  fact  that  it  is  also   tax   efficient  and   underpinned  by  EU  subsidies  and   it's  no  wonder   that  farmland   is  an   attractive  choice  for  investors  -­‐  I  simply  believe   that  it's  even  more  attractive  in  France. The  price  of  English  farmland   has  rocketed  by  more  than  10,000%   in   the   last   60   years   and  France   certainly  gives   farmers   a  cheaper   (and  sunnier)  option.     It   wouldn’t  surprise  me   at  all  to  see  further   enquiries  of  this  type  come  into  the  Leggett’s  offices  and  if   you  are   thinking  of  buying  or  selling   farmland   in  the  Deux-­‐Sèvres  over   the   coming  year  then  we  would  love  to  hear  from  you.

Advertise your   Private  House  Sale From 10€ per month Please send details by email for inclusion into the next issue.

Tel: 05  49  70  26  21

www.thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr

As Mark  Twain  so  memorably  said  “Buy  land,  they’re  not  making   it  anymore”!

Trevor Leggett   is   Chief   Executive  of  Leggett   Immobilier.  You  can   access  all  the  local  Leggett  Immobilier  property  listings  and  articles   at  www.frenchestateagents.com/poitou-­‐charentes-­‐property.

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The Deux-Sevres Monthly magazine, November 2012  

English language magazine for the Deux-Sevres and surrounding areas in France.

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