Considering how strange last 12 months have been for our family, due to my illness, I can hardly believe that this last weekend has been the annual fete du marbre et de la sculpture in Caunes. In some ways last year’s fete seems as if it was years ago, but as we were walking around the stalls over the weekend, some of it felt like just yesterday.The weekend began with a musical bonanza on Friday night. 3 venues, including the Abbey grounds, held concerts. All were free, and people just moved from one to another. Classical guitars, some soft bossa nova type jazzy stuff,a 10 year old on key board ( just for 5 minutes) an excellent band playing Pink Floyd, Doors and other old classics, an amazing singer song writer type ( he actually played cover versions…not his own stuff) with guitar and harmonica, and a pretty awful rock band who got plenty of people dancing with their somewhat tuneless rendition of Brown Sugar.
So it was a mixed bag….but great fun, walking from one venue to the next, glass of wine in hand, chatting to people along the way. There was also a village meal, so actually some of the music provided a background for the chattering that went on as people ate....and drank considerable quantities of wine. I don't think any of the musicians minded....they all seemed to understand that not everyone was listening incredibly carefully to their sounds.
|I am not wild about some of the marble statues that are displayed just about everywhere in Caunes....even when there isn't a festival going on...but this one fascinated me.....very Rosie the Riveter.|
Saturday was the first day of the actual marble festival, and we had arranged to meet Veronica, who lives in a Corbieres village, and who I met last year when I was in Caunes on my own. We wandered around the displays, chatted away, and spent part of the evening over a village meal, eaten in the lovely abbey gardens. Veronica was a mine of information about getting involved in village life in France, having been part of her village’s life for many years….she also gave me a great compote recipe, which will have to be tried out in the next few weeks.
Veronica left to go home, we sampled yet another Caunes musical experience. It
was described as electronic music, and consisted of banks of computers,
keyboards and speakers, with one of two DJs, who mixed it all and worked very
hard on stage, ensuring it sounded as they wanted. Some of it was interesting,
and some I’m not so sure about…but it looked impressive and the light show that
went with it couldn’t fail to be good as it was beamed onto the abbey walls.
|not everything was about marble.....|
|The paella was excellent|
|"Marble is Perfekt" Bnoise Electro Jazz avec DJs Janoez et David Brunner|
We felt as if everyone we had ever met since coming to Caunes, was out and about. We saw our French neighbours, and we met up with every English, American and Dutch person we have come across in the last 18 months. What was really interesting, was that everyone we knew....seemed to know everyone else that we knew, even if we had never met them together before.The whole of Caunes was wandering the streets in the rather weak sunshine.
And finally….dans les jardins de l’Abbaye…..des producteurs …..Pays Cathare et Sud de France…providing incredible assiettes gourmandes.
We ate and drank well !
We ate and drank well !
This seems to be the start of summer in Caunes. The classical Friday night concerts start in 2 weeks time ( les Vendredis Classiques ) in the abbey grounds, and the regularly held village meals are now being advertised.
Despite a couple of trips back to England over the summer…..it is going to be pretty full of being entertained, eating and drinking here in Caunes.
|Sculptor Eric Stambi putting the final touches on the exhibition piece for this year.." L'Argent Double"|
|Mark, Jane and Steve, checking out "L'Argent Double"|
We have decided we like it.