Raindrops and snowdrops – bon weekend from France…

Written by on February 6, 2021 in Newsletter from France

Chickens and snowdrops in flower in garden


I hope that you and yours are well.

We have had yet more rain here. Saturated fields, soggy chickens and rivers running down the roads. My ducks are having a ball. Spring is on the way though. The snowdrops are flowering, daffodils are sprouting and Nan’s tree is smothered with buds that are about to burst into blossom. It’s named for Mark’s (my other half) Grandma Flo. She was a feisty old girl with pure white hair. When she passed away she left Mark £100 in her will and he spent it on a magnolia tree with pure white flowers.

Another sign that spring is on the way is that Monsieur and Madame Vache (French for cow) are out and about. No it’s not their real name, I made it up since in the 17 years that I have had a home here, I have never seen either of them without a cow being present! We have never chatted with them, other than to say hello. You couldn’t really call it a conversation. We say bonjour, they nod back. It’s not personal, they are known in the village for not being big on talking.

In the winter they keep their herd in a giant barn but, as soon as it’s warm enough, out they go. Then, at least twice a day Mr and Mrs Vache escort their cows between fields on either side of the narrow road that leads between two hills into our village. It’s the only time we ever see gridlock in these parts, and even then there are usually no more than two cars on either side of the cow train. Not a word passes between the old couple, dressed in matching farm overalls and rubber boots, as in perfect unison, they open the gates to the fields and steer the slow moving creatures from one side to another.

Then they close the gates, nod to the waiting cars and silently depart, back to their farmhouse, leaving the cows to peep over the hedge at the traffic jam clearing.

Me, I love a good chinwag (British slang for a chat in case you haven’t heard that expression and have visions of me literally wagging my chin!). In fact I’m even thinking of starting a podcast. I’d love to feature some of the people I meet but maybe not Mr and Mrs Vache, you won’t be able to hear them nodding!

Wishing you a very bon weekend

Wishing you a bon weekend and bisous from the soggy middle of nowhere, rural northern France

Join me on FacebookTwitter and Instagram for fun daily updates from France…

Janine Marsh is Author of My Good Life in France: In Pursuit of the Rural Dream – ebook, print & audio, on Amazon everywhere & all good bookshops online, and My Four Seasons in France: A Year of the Good Life

Don’t miss the weekly newsletter which every week brings you inspiration from France

Read the whole newsletter here 

It’s easy to subscribe if you don’t want to miss my weekly newsletters of musings from France and a round-up of fab features, plus exclusive random newsletter giveaways. Just scroll to the bottom of this post if you’re on a mobile device. Or look on the right on a laptop. Type in your email address and click subscribe…

Related Articles

French recipes, cocktails and more for the weekend…

Bonjour, I hope that you and yours are well. Here we’ve been cutting hedges before spring proper starts and birds begin nesting. Between our garden and Claudette’s next door, we have a long hedge of hawthorn, laurel, elderflower and hazel trees. Our garden was once two fields of a farm that belonged to Claudette’s family, […]

Continue Reading

Living in France and frozen pipes

Bonjour, I hope that you and yours are well. The weather is changeable here veering from feet-numbingly freezing to deliciously warm. One day last week it was so cold that the pipes that carry water to the kitchen froze. There was just one tiny section of pipes which hadn’t been insulated as if we live […]

Continue Reading

Bon weekend from freezing France

Bonjour, I hope that you and yours are well. This week it’s been fffffreezing in my part of France, teeth chatteringly, hand-numbingly cold. The chickens laughed at me when I insulated their coops but I like to think they’re grateful now. It is 17 years to the week since I first saw my old French […]

Continue Reading

Perfect French pancakes and more newsletter from France

Bonjour, I hope that you and yours are well. Rain is what we have here in the north of France. Bucket loads of it. And high winds that swoosh through the valley bending the trees over, rattling doors and windows and lifting the chickens off the ground like feathered Mary Poppinses. None of our 6 […]

Continue Reading

King of the croisssants – a tale from France

Bonjour, I hope that you and yours are well. It’s been a quiet week in my village with snow, storms, gale force winds and torrential rain all in the space of a few days. Definitely weather for baking! 30 January is National Croissant Day. Yes, really, I didn’t make it up I promise you. Croissants […]

Continue Reading


If you enjoyed this article, subscribe now to receive more just like it.

Subscribe via RSS Feed

Comments are closed.