I half expected to find the gently floating body of Ophelia in its crystal clear, weedy, trailing waters:
The place is, however, rather heavily touristy in its self-promotion; placards with cartoon-like illustrations referring to its own importance as one of the great sources of the world, Gargantua and Rabelais - a local lad renowned for his love of one of the many local Loire wines, Chinon. We generally buy Rouge D'anjou at our local cave in Loudun, where it sells at 2.48 Euros the litre from the en-vrac pump. Most acceptable, smooth and good quality, I've yet to have a hangover on it, so will stick with it for the foreseeable future. Just bought a further ten litres today, in fact.
Tomorrow we're off to Bressuire for the vintage car race preview day. Having attended the first of the Goodwood festival of speed/ revival days of this kind back in 2000, or thereabouts, 'twill be interesting to see how this compares to that event. http://www.goodwood.co.uk/festival-of-speed/welcome.aspx
At this inaugural event we bumped into both Rowan Atkinson and George Harrison. Harrison was a lover and collector of small race-cars - God knows what class - and was pushing one around when we met him. He was also, of course, a member of the George Formby Society and a Uke player. Indeed, his last live performance, as it were, was at a Society convention in Blackpool when he gave an impromptu performance. I have a copy of it on CD somewhere, but it's not good quality.
Charlie has become quite laid back here, even though Rocky often pesters him and still follows him around. He's taken to lying out in the longer grass in the evening sun:
We, too, have taken to relaxing in the evening sun:
The weather has been iffy with way too much wind and rain since we arrived. It now appears to be improving and heading in the direction we expect, though.
Sadly, while without 'tnet, another great US musician passed on: Levon Helm was probably best known as singer and drummer with Dylan's one time backing outfit, 'The Band'. He lived- and died - over in Woodstock, NY State, where he held regular open-air gigs under the banner of 'Midnight Rambles.' I sadly never made it to one of these gigs and never met the guy, though he had become a regular player at the Merlefest Americana festival in Wilksboro, NC, which we visited as often as possible. This year the festival has lost three of its principal artists - Doc Watson (the festival's named after his late son, Merle Watson); Earl Scruggs and Levon Helm.