Tuesday, 31 March 2015

The Jewish Doctor

Some photos posted by Anna Gauthe in Facebook (Varen un Village en Images) of the railway station at Lexos have provoked some memories of the German occupation and the arrest and deportation of Doctor Marcel Francois Ringuet. The doctor arrived in Lexos in 1907 and continued to practice until 1944 when he was arrested on 1st June 1944. Sent to the collection centre in Compiegne he was loaded onto a transport for Dachau and along with over 500 others died en route from suffocation.
Villagers gathered to inaugurate a memorial stone in July 1946 which stands beside the church in Lexos.
Some discussion has arisen about the extent to which the station was used as a staging post for deportations and with few survivors in the area now some definitive details would be interesting.
More general interest history of Lexos and the area can be found in Jean-Paul Marion's "Memoire de ..Lexos" in the link below:
https://milhars.files.wordpress.com/2015/01/lexos.pdf

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April in the garden

Debbie gives us gardening tips              
lejardindesespiemonts@gmail.com
2015 April Jobs

It's officially spring time,  even if it doesn't feel like it! However, the weather is forecast to improve, so get ready for a busy time in your gardens! Here's this month's top jobs.
Weeding.
There's been lots of rain lately but it's about to get nicer, so make weeding a priority! Hoe your borders regularly to prevent annual weeds from spreading and keep ripping perennial  weeds out by the root.
Dividing
Divide any perennials that you didn't do last month. Not all perennials need dividing every year, be guided by the specific variety and divide the ones that you want to propagate, the ones that have grown too large for their allotted space, and those that have lost their shape or are no longer flowering well.
Pruning
Prune fig trees. This fruit does so well over here, look after your trees by pruning them, to keep them in shape and increase yield. Also prune summer flowering shrubs e.g. Buddleia and Caryopteris and Perovskia.
Feeding
Feed shrubs and roses with organic matter such as compost or manure or apply fertiliser.
Check tree ties
If you have staked any young trees, check tree ties to make sure that they are not digging into the bark, and that there is room for growth for the trunk girth to expand.
Take care of climbers
Tie in climbing and rambling roses. Use soft plant ties, not hard wire, which would cut into the stems. Tie them in as near to horizontal as possible. This will restrict sap flow, which will cause more sideshoots to grow along the length of the stem, thus producing more flowers.
Twining climbers (e.g. honeysuckle and clematis) will need regular tying in and twining around their supports, throughout their growth periods of spring and summer.
Deadheading
Hopefully you're still enjoying lots of lovely flowering bulbs, but  make sure you deadhead your daffodils and tulips as required, leaving the leaves to die back naturally, thus returning energy to the bulb.
Pest patrol
Regularly inspect for caterpillars, aphids, slugs and snails, who will become more of a problem as temperatures increase. Inspect buxus and holly trees for signs of blight, and keep a regular eye on buxus for signs of box tree caterpillar, which should be dealt with immediately (with a pyrethrum spray). Inspect Oak and Pine trees for processional caterpillars, which are a danger to people and pets.
Add fresh compost to containers to provide sufficient nutrients for the plants. Check that the pot size is still adequate and pot on any plants showing signs of being pot-bound. Check for vine weevil - a symptom of which is plants starting to wilt. Heuchera, Saxifraga, Sempervivum and Sedum are particularly prone to this pest. The young vine weevil grub eats these roots, while the adult vine weevil beatles eat the leaves of evergreen shrubs.
Seed sowing and vegetable planting.
If you're growing your own veggies and  herbs from seed, there's lots that can be direct sown now. Lettuce, broccoli, cauliflower, kale - check your seed packets for guidelines. if you sowed plants under cover last month, transplant them to your vegetable patch when the young plants are of a sufficient size and the roots are fully established.
Hopefully you've been chitting your potatoes. If not, get them onto a sunny windowsill to help the shoots develop as they can be planted this month. Asparagus crowns can be planted this month too. A few people have said to me that they haven't bothered with asparagus as it takes so long to reap any rewards. I think this is a shame. If you take the time now to create an asparagus bed, a little bit of time spent weeding, watering and winter mulching is all that is needed, then in a few years you can enjoy lovely, fresh asparagus, for many years to come.
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La Bedoune at La Seye et Vous, Verfeil sur Seye

Vendredi 3 avril "LA BEDOUNE " en trio, sera en concert dans notre café-resto à partir de19h30.
LA BEDOUNE est un groupe à capacité variable qui rend hommage au blues et rythm'n blues avec une touche de folk.
Avec CECILE PERFETTI au chant et à la basse, GREG PERFETTI à la guitare et MARC DECHAUMONT à la batterie (ex Fly and the tox).

A manger : Carbonnade de boeuf (boeuf à la bière) ou tourte au champignons, et des desserts.

Menu pour le week end de pâques :

Entrées : Terrine de lotte ou Briks au légumes et chèvre
Plats      : Souris d'agneau ou agneau korma
                  et encore des desserts !
Nous serons exceptionnellement ouvert le dimanche pascal au soir, sur réservation.
Merci de réserver au plus tard dimanche 5 avril à 13h.
Renseignements et réservations : 05 63 65 22 18.

Au plaisir de vous voir chez nous !
La Seye et vous team
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FET at Les Cabannes with Oscar Wilde and the Black Douglas

On Saturday night, the new season of FET got off to a splendid start with a sold out performance of Oscar Wilde and the Black Douglas. Written and performed by Leslie Clack who together with actress Patricia Kessler founded 'Dear Conjunction Theatre Company' in Paris in 1991. The show was a brilliant collection of historical fact ,humour, scenes from the plays, the trial ,and the revelation that " Bosie " far from being the victim of the story ,was in fact the "Villain " .All the characters were portrayed with great aplomb by Mr Clack ,and he and his director, Patricia Kessler ,are to be congratulated on creating a show that is so entertaining and informative . The rousing reception at the curtain call was ample proof of the audience's appreciation .
The show was followed by a " Wildean " dinner at Le Petit Café,Les Cabannes with green carnations on the tables (a symbol of Oscar himself). The menu of " Salome's " salmon, " the Ballad Of Reading Quail " and " Lady Windermere's Flan " was enjoyed by all. The restaurant was booked out ( For future reference ! ) and we were joined by Leslie, Patricia ,and Robin Ellis ,fresh from his new Poldark triumph ! 
Everyone agreed it had been a most enjoyable evening !
 
Many thanks
Jane
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Pigeon spikes

I have seen them on Amazon.fr
Terri

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First cuckoo in Varen

Hi Val
Despite the dismal weather we heard the first cuckoo yesterday and again this morning. Spring must be on the way.
Fingers crossed.
Jill W

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Our daughter revitalised

I mentioned on TAG that I wanted to find someone who could change our old slides in to photos. Photographer Gareth Brown who has all the expertise and equipment does this for a very reasonable rate each slide. It is not just a scanning service as he corrects, cleans and enhances the photos. On one of our pictures he even levelled the horizon. Below a picture of our daughter  taken 48 years ago.
Gareth can be contacted at       gareth.brown21@gmail.com


The improved picture

How styles change

The rather dishy young man with his daughter who could he be? JamesFox perhaps.
We have had some slides made in to photos, what super memories.
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TGV/LGV: will it happen?

There has been an exercise of public consultation (enquete publique) into the construction of the high speed railway line (LGV) to link Bordeaux and Dax and Toulouse proposed for the TGV trains destined to speed the journey to Paris to under 4 hours. The enquiry asked people living along the proposed routes for their opinion on the usefulness of the projects. Perhaps unsurprisingly a negative response was forthcoming, which has been passed to the government to decide.
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French pensioners go abroad when retiring!

So where are they all going?
 
While most remain in Europe, 44 percent head to Africa with Morocco particularly popular. In Europe, Portugal and Spain are the most popular destinations, and further afield, Bali and Thailand are proving attractive too.
 According to the site retraite-etranger.fr the French are attracted to politically stable countries where the cost of living is much lower than in France.
Val says  it seems funny all the UK expats here and the young French in London. Now we hear the old French are leaving as well.
Whatever happens and even now experiencing a rainy spell with family, we are happy with our decision...  Vive La France.
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End of an era?

For 45 years the Baylet family has presided over the political life of Tarn and Garonne, the latest incumbent of the presidency of the Department's conseil général, Jean-Michel, finds himself at the mercy of two independent councillors (sans etiquette). The recent election left the council exactly split between left and right, with M Baylet re-elected and hoping to continue in his post. Assuming all the left candidates support him - and this is by no means certain - he will rely on the support of the two independents from the Dunes area, one a retired farmer (and maire of Dunes) and the other a retired headmistress.
Perhaps it's time for an end to the dynasty. Though we don't imagine that the Depeche du Midi agrees. M Baylet is also the main shareholder in the newspaper group.
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Processional caterpillars at the Montauban dog refuge

There is a problem with processional caterpillars at the chenil/ kennels, dog refuge at Montauban. The caterpillars when they leave their fluffy white nests high in fir and pine trees and walk in a line make an interesting spectacle. They are however very dangerous to us and pets. A line of caterpillars if threatened by bending over to look at them can send out 600,000 poisoned barbs. The kennels have sent in garbed workmen to safely dispose of them.
I have given a link to the article in case you have them and need to know more
http://www.ladepeche.fr/article/2015/03/28/2076251-processionnaire-c-est-la-chenille-dont-on-a-marre.html

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Nous sommes mardi, le trente et un

http://www.fleursdeterry.com/
Check Terry and her plants out by clicking on the website.
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Monday, 30 March 2015

Look up your Mayor

Good evening, both.

I was looking up one of the maire's on t’Internet, and thought this quite interesting
Our maire Massat came in at 35242. There was also a rating for mayors of the
11544 towns of between 500 and 2000 inhabitants and Massat was better than
71 of these, coming in at No. 11473.
Should you wish to read more, the link is:  
http://www.linternaute.com/actualite/politique/meilleur-maire-de-france/andr
e-massat-varen/ville-82187
All the best,
Sarah
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Pigeon spikes

Hi Val
I'm not having any success in locating pigeon spikes in/around Gaillac. I've tried all the usual spaces so thought of TAG!
Perhaps someone might give me a good lead.
Di    dtornai@gmail.com
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Just some of the pictures of station at Lexos and disused storage shed by Anna Gauthe

Photographer Anna Gauthe who now lives at Lexos le bar in the commune of Varen has posted a file of pictures in the facebook site Varen: en village en images. I have chosen these to show you.
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The UMP is gaining strength

Former president Nicolas Sarkozy’s right-wing Union for a Popular Movement (UMP) and centrist allies on Sunday won control of an overwhelming majority of departments in France, in a major blow to the ruling Socialist Party.

Despite historically high scores at the local level, the far-right National Front (FN) failed to win majority control of any departmental councils. France’s CSA polling firm said FN candidates had finished first in at least 43 cantons, the geographical units that make up French departments, but did not have enough councillors to take control of any departments.                                                    Comments to taglines82@gmail.com 

The results throughout France

Midi Pyrenees turns to the left, Aveyron stays right.

Brilliant programme at the Querlys this month

Starting with  "The theory of everything" followed by " Le dernier loup"
"Selma"  and then "Cinderella", "The second best Marigold Hotel" and it goes on.
If you like the Cinema this is a good month. A label on the top of TAG links you to the Querlys
programme.
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Bee helpful

Taglines has featured many stories on the demise of bee populations in the region and today it is good to report an episode of bee solidarity. In fact there is an association called SolAbeille which aims to help apiculteurs throughout France and this weekend members mobilised to help colleagues in the south west.
The Ariege department has been particularly affected by losses and apiculteurs from all over France met this weekend to transfer more than 2 million bees in 70 swarms to the Pyrenean region. One can only hope that this action will be fruitful in preserving mountain plant species and local honey.
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Sunday, 29 March 2015

Gite needed end of July for 2 weeks

Hi Val

I have friends coming over and no way can they fit in my new abode. So looking for a gite with pool, 6 adults 1 child and 2 babes in the Najac, Varen, Verfeil etc areas. End of July for 2 weeks , would that be a sutible request for Tag on Line.
Thank you
Jo x       stephensjoanne@gmail.com

Nous sommes lundi, le trente

Bob is a builder
Property maintenance, Swimming pool maintenance  and much more, contact Bob Walker
boblorrainew@msn.com    tel 0563272684 or mob 0674000492

Put them in your diary, lest you forget


Pretty in pink

Dear Val and Malc,
Happy BST or is it FST?
Nev
The clocks have leapt forward and we are now on summer time, but the weather does not fully agree.  On this fine Sunday morning we were visiting someone in Milhars and on the way back home I saw the railway station at Lexos framed with these rather colourful Prunus trees.  We parked our car inside the old goods depot and we walked along the disused tracks looking for a suitable vantage point.
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Logs to Verfeil, any ideas?

Good Afternoon Val,We had the pleasure of meeting you and Malcolm in the Seye & Vous last year and now I'm after a little help. In the autumn, we had a log burner installed in our house in Verfeil, which we are very happy with. Unfotunately we do not have any contact details of a local reputable supplier of dried logs, who can deliver to the village. Any ideas? Names, web site, email address or phone numbers would be greatly appreciated,
Keep up the good work with Taglines, I visit the site from time to time and its full of interesting information.Best Regards
Richard 
Elaine and Richard Walker
Val says I have left the Guest house on in Norfolk, one never knows which readers may be  holidaying near there.
On logs and suggestions to send to Richard. We have not needed any for a couple of years. 
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10 Flowers to grow with vegetables

http://www.my-garden-school.com/10-flowers-to-grow-with-vegetables/
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10 Flowers To Grow With Vegetables

Cakes in France

Hi all
I have 3 places left on the easter workshop this week.
It's this Thursday 2nd April at 2pm, 45€ and includes 6 decorated cupcakes in a
presentation box.
We're going to be focusing on  chicks and I'll show you various techniques
to create different effects that you can use on other sugarpaste animals.
As an addition I will also tell you how to make a creme egg!

I did some decorating with the delightful little boy Laurent the other day and two of his friends.
It was a lovely afternoon so I might consider doing childrens workshops. I know you are often looking for things for your Grandchildren to do.
It needs a bit more thinking through
Glynis
Val says contact Glynis if you are interested in the workshop and also if you think your children or grandchildren would be interested. Our two  grandchildren are keen.
Contact   cakelady@orange.fr

Put it in your diary now

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Quit while you're ahead?

A young man in the Gironde area was asked by the local Pole Emploi (job centre) to repay some 3100 euros over-paid to him during a period of unemployment. The system normally offers a repayment plan spread over a period of months or years. In his case the amount to be paid each month was calculated as 0.01 euros - ie 1 centime. That will take 26126 years! Now that seems a good deal, but our young man is disputing the actual debt, so did not ask for spread repayments and pointed it out to the authorities.
A spokesperson for the Pole Emploi said it was a "computer bug".....
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What do you do in our area when you have visitors on a Sunday?

You go to the St. Antonin market. Starting to get busier for the Easter/ Paques holidays, the market should be starting to pick up after the morose winter Sundays.
We like to go to Laguepie normally, the market there has everything we need,  but for a bit more life and colour the visitors like the market held in the attractive ancient streets of St. Antonin. I am sure we will have some photographs from our young family photographers later in the day.
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Ten things happening in France in April

http://www.thelocal.fr/20150327/whats-on-in-france-ten-things-to-do-in-april
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Jazz at Marciac this summer

Jazz in Marciac

17 soirées sous le chapiteau. 27 juillet : Kenny Garret Quintet, Joshua Redman.
28 juillet : Alfredo Rodriguez trio, Orquesta Buena Vista Social Club. 29 juillet : Chick Corea, Stanley Clarke band.
30 juillet : Laurent Coulondre, Shai Maestro Trio & Friends, Paolo Fresu-Omar Sosa-Trilok Gurtu trio. 31 juillet : Lisa Simone, Melody Gardot. 1er août : Lee Ritenour & Dave Grusin, Larry Carlton.
2 août : Hamilton de Holanda ; Gilberto Gil et Caetano Veloso.
3 août : Roberto Fonseca (Tribute to Ibrahim Ferrer), Chucho Valdès.
4 août : Stéphane Kerecki, Leyla McCalla, Marcus Miller. 5 août : hommage à Paco de Lucia avec Al Di Meola.
6 août : Dhafer Youssef, Les Ambassadeurs (Salif Keita, Amadou Bagayoko & The Cheick Tidiane Seck).
7 août : Jan Garbarek, Jason Moran & Robert Glasper Duet.
8 août. New Orleans Preservation Hall with Charlie Gabriel, Wynton Marsalis septet.
9 août : Carte blanche à Émile Parisien ; Archie Shepp. 10 août : «A night in New Orleans», Wynton Marsalis septet. 11 août : Dr John & The Nite Trippers, George Clinton. 12 août : Robin McKelle & The Flytones, Zaz.

Saturday, 28 March 2015

Nous sommes dimanche, le vingt neuf

Carpetman at Montauban, what fab stuff he has, and all in the best possible taste. He just seems to have an eye for the things we want for our home. Floorings, carpets paints, if you have not been then put it on your list to visit when next in Montauban. You will not be disappointed. Nice guy Steve and his family love donkeys and his cheque always goes to support Liberte des Anes.
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Any estate car needing a new owner?

Hi Val
We need to replace our estate car and, as they are so expensive here, we are
thinking of buying in UK. I wonder if any TAG readers have used the LHD car
sales companies in UK. I’ve read a few warnings of disreputable ones but
they are never ‘named and shamed’. Any recommendations or warnings
gratefully accepted. Or indeed any offers of estate cars for sale here.
Love
Linda (pebblestherapies@hotmail.com)
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Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, I think he is beautiful

cicada/ant
Dear Val,
I've just found this photo on a camera I haven't used for ages.
Apparently
it dates from 2012. I think I just wanted to capture the lacy wings,
butcaught the emerging ant at the same time. I suspect he made a hasty
retreat.

Kathy
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Cuddle a lamb

Who could resist the chance to cuddle a lamb, our grandchildren certainly could not. So down to friend Anke's we went this afternoon for a spot of animal cuddling.
The dog Anke has temporarily adopted until a home can be found, from the streets at Lez, an hameau near to us was there and what a friendly chap he is.
As soon as we saw him we recognised it was the dog that about 6 months ago on our way past Lez we saw him in a bad state dragging a hind leg obviously having just been knocked over by a car. We stopped to try and catch him to no avail, he was running scared trailing his leg. We went immediately to the vet to report the incident and see if anyone had reported their dog lost. No one had, so we then went back and continued the search. We never found him and nothing more was ever heard about him till now.
He now walks mainly on three legs, but just occasionally uses his fourth, he can still jump higher than Bonny as we saw him leap over a gate to follow Anke.
Anke is going to take him to the vet and arrange to have him castrated and have his hip looked at.
Our children adored him and their phones are now full of pictures of him, Bonny also thought he was a friendly chap. Well done Anke for that rescue, I think in a few weeks when he is house trained you will have given a loving dog a start of a good life.
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Photo by Annabel Jonkers

An interesting view from the Guardian on the plane crash in the Alps

Don't blame depression for the German wings tragedy says the headline and although there are some very good and relevant points in the article I think the fact remains that the co pilot crashed the plane on purpose. Nobody should demonise  depression, something millions of people suffer with, but this young man took this action whilst the balance of his mind was disturbed. I think something more than depression was involved and this man  needed by the sound of it real psychiatric help, which once again we should not stigmatize.
Read the article and see what your response is.

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/mar/27/depression-germanwings-tragedy-pilot-andreas-lubitz-mental-health

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The Fortress of Penne

Click the link to read activities around the Penne area, all very interesting so do look

http://lill.mj.am/link/lill/y6wkprwqnlg/1/1JCDgQpxsJv0a1KYwCsGWw/aHR0cDovL2xpbGwubWouYW0vbmwvbGlsbC8wMy5odG1sP2E9MWZsRnh4VkVwZCZiPWExYWFmYzliJmM9bGlsbCZkPTFkZmE5ZDgzJmU9MzJhMzkzYzAmZW1haWw9cm9zaWUuamVubmluZ3NAd2FuYWRvby5mcg

Spring forward

Don't forget to put your clocks forward by one hour tonight (Saturday) as we move to longer daylight hours but darker mornings for a week or two.
One consequence is that the traditional Friday afternoon petanque meeting will go through it's transhumance from the plains of Varen to the highlands of the Verfeil boulodrome.
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Freedom to stay at home doing the housework!!!

What sort of freedom is that. This makes me so furious, when you talk of discrimination this comes top of the list, sexual discrimination. Imagine if I was the PM and gave men the freedom to stay at home and do housework  and not have jobs, never mind well paid top jobs. How would that be received by men?
 This is from a man who is already an MEP for the National Front. Who but who could think these people of the FN would be able to shape our lives. I am going off spitting with rage.

WOMEN should have the ‘freedom to stay at home’ says a Front National (FN) MEP.

Speaking in a debate on how to improve workplace equality this week, an MEP from Haute-Savoie caused controversy by saying his colleagues were forgetting a vital idea – “freedom for women to take care of their home”. 

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How can airlines vet pilots health more?

Airbus crash pilot Andreas Lubitz had been planning a spectacular gesture to make everyone "remember" who he was, it was claimed on Friday night.
An ex-girlfriend of the Germanwings pilot who crashed his plane in the French Alps, killing all 149 others on board, described him as "tormented" and able to hide secrets.
Maria, 26 (not her real name), told Bild newspaper that when she heard about the crash she remembered that he had said he was going do something "that would change the system" and "make everyone remember" him.
She added: "It didn't make sense at the time but now it all does."
Maria, who is thought to have met Lubitz at work, said he would wake up at night screaming in terror: "We're going down."
Her claim follows revelations by the Dusseldorf prosecutor that Lubitz had been declared unfit, or unwell, in the days leading up to his last fatal flight on Tuesday, but that he had hidden this from his employer.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/aviation/11501075/Andreas-Lubitz-planned-spectacular-gesture-that-would-go-down-in-history-claims-ex-girlfriend.html

Val says will the rule of two sort it?  AIRLINES across the globe have ordered there should be two people in the cockpit at all times after the Germanwings crash in southern France. 
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Friday, 27 March 2015

Support TAG and our charities and I will thank you in spades.

Talking to one of our advertisers yesterday he thanked me, saying every time I mentioned him he got a flurry of new business opportunities. This made me think running through the difference businesses from time to time could be worth while. I will work my way through them over the next few weeks.
Tomorrow will be Graham Who.
 Graham Spokes, the man with a van.
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Nous sommes samedi, le vingt huit

Need things moving in the area
 Look in the side panel for Grahams contact details. You need something moving Grahams your man.
tel  0674427683    email: grahamspokes@btinternet.com
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And they keep coming

Two weeks ago I saw Bilou on the streets in Lez, lying in the middle of the road,. I asked my friend who lives there about him and learned he showed up in Lez about 4 years ago, with a female dog, probably his sister. She disappeared after a while, hit by a car maybe? and this lovely boy just stayed around! He has been fed by a farmer, but nobody has really been responsible for him for the past years. He was also hit by a car last summer, breaking his leg/pelvis and healed without any veterinairy treatment! He does have a bad limp, but seems to have adapted to that.
I took him home today, because I could see him being killed the next time,. I talked to the farmer, who is the closest thing to an 'owner' and he was very happy for him to leave and be fed by someone else! I can't blame him, because he never chose to have this dog and he has done his best for him anyway..
He is very friendly, very cuddly and loves people! As most hunting dogs, not a agressive bone in his body! I checked him over, looked at his teeth, moved his sore leg, carried him into the car and had him on a lead with no problems at all. He has been fine today with all my animals, even in the goat/sheep paddock, around the chickens and with my own dog. As a former professional dog trainer, I can tell already he would make a lovely pet for someone! I will keep him for a while, have him castrated, wormed, chipped and vaccinated and teach him some basic commands, but I would prefer not to keep him, since I am in the process of selling my house and have a lot of animals to care for already. 
Who is going to give this lovely little hunting dog a forever home? I would be available for advice/training and look after him during holidays if needed!
Anke

please contact me at anke.terbruggen@orange.fr


Original illustrations at Negrepelisse


An 8 week old little cutie

This little mite called Laïka at the moment was born this January and weighs 2 kg 200 . A crossed yorkie with a border collie ( the mind boggles at how that union was achieved.) Is good with everybody, calm in the car, puced, vaccinated and vermifuged. She will never be more than 10 kilos
Maeva is suggesting you take the dog for ten days to see you are happy it can be returned if you are not in love. There will be a charge for the puce.  Contact Maeva if you speak French  maeva82@gmx.fr  or Val if you don't   at  taglines82@gmail.com

An interesting project

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Une poule qui ne ponde pas? c'est vraiment rigolo

 Sitting in the dentists waiting room with shaking knees I got talking to a French lady. Well in truth she got talking to me. It worked out we had many friends in common, she lived at St. Martin Laguepie. She has a thriving business with hundreds of canards, volailles, pintades, and such fowl things. What does she do with a big percentage of them ? She puts the youngsters alive in boxes and then they fly to the UK and an elevage there feeds them up, slits their pretty little throats (she did the knife across the throat action at this point) and then they go to various supermarkets.
I said we had four donkeys, four cats, one dog and one hen called Penny. She asked if Penny was a pondeuse and when I explained she was too old to lay and now she was simply a pet, her cackling and knee slapping rocked the surgery!!I am sure that will be good dinnertime conversation over their meal table.

Actually I did not have shaking knees, the dentist is brilliant, even showing me the X rays explaining how he will crown two teeth. I think being such a good looking bloke does help his case.
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This morning Eldo with his new "hopeful"friend

Just received this photo, of Eldo and new friend, cross your paws for a happy ending.
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Just what you need to know

More than 40 warning signs on the Toulouse rocade (ring road) will now give up to date timings on journeys to the various points on the road network. Given the normal bouchons on the rocade effectively they are telling you how late you will be. The motorways are controlled by two different operators but they are now pooling their data to "tranquilise" motorists caught in the jams. Most will show the delays to Blagnac airport - perhaps showing flight information too would be useful.
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The most doggy week of our lives and tomorrow family arrive.

We started the week thinking we would be fostering a great big poorly dog. Happily the owners appeared to find their darling pooch. Sadly a dog who is very ill and may not have long to live. In the situation being with the family he knows is a wonderful ending.
Then we got an urgent message that Eldo desperately needed a foster family until he was rehomed. Eldo arrived and there is no one but no one who could not love him. Only 8 months old and a complete darling. Abused kicked and hit when he was tiny, he bears no grudges to anyone, we have never known a puppy quite like him.
Yesterday afternoon a lovely family came to see him, they like us fell in love.. but their male dog was not so amorous of the puppy. Eldo has gone for a trial and we await news today on how their dog is reacting to Eldo. We have made it clear they must bring Eldo back if there is a problem.
I had plans this week to cook and bake for the family arriving tomorrow, all gone up in smoke. Mind my cooking could have gone the same way... so what restaurants are open then next week!
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And a rabbi prevented from voting

In Toulouse a rabbi was prevented from voting last Sunday because one of the scrutineers objected to his wearing a kippa (traditional skull cap). The vote was being held in a school and the Communist Party overseer present said it was a breach of laicité which forbids religious signs in public places.
Fortunately for common sense other voters present insisted that the vote be allowed.
In fact it is not illegal to wear such symbols in voting stations and the rabbi pointed out that he had signed an accord on laicité with the Minister of the Interior just a week earlier whilst wearing the kippa.
A Communist Party spokesperson said  it was not a demonstration on the part of their representative (a teacher) but a "misinterpretation of the law".
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Restaurants in Toulouse, vegetarian, bio, sans gluten

http://www.toulouscope.fr/article/2013/04/30/509-quels-sont-les-restaurants-vegetariens-a-toulouse.html
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A young pregnant woman attacked in Toulouse for wearing a hijab

A young  muslim mother having left her two small children at school was attacked by two youths for wearing a head dress of her religion. They ripped it off and one  stabbed at her with a knife all the while shouting racial insults. The other youth realising the women was pregnant, baby expected in April, tried to pull his friend off. The pregnant lady is now in hospital. Her husband has denounced this islamophobic act saying " We are French and Muslim" . Mounir age 33 grew up at Castres with his wife Kedidja.      What a sad world we live in.      comments to taglines82@gmail.com

Nous sommes vendredi, le vingt sept

http://crozier-traductions.com/    Jacynth who always pays without being reminded for her advert deserves a reminder of her skills to readers.
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A host of golden daffodils

Beside the lake beneath the trees, fluttering and dancing in the breeze. A  daffodil wood near Cambou.
Photo Jean Burrows
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Thursday, 26 March 2015

Jacynth can do your translation

Jacynth can do your translation, help with French administration problems and teach you French. Sounds a useful lady.
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Is Sivens open for dog walkers?

 hi Val
Out of curiousity, as Sivens is closed to walking and exploring, I’m struggling to find new walks for me and my dogs that don’t cross roads, take us onto muddy fields or disturb cattle.  Anyone have any suggestions for dog walks in and around Lisle Sur Tarn or Gaillac?  Anyone feel like meeting up to go walking?  
dawnprince@me.com
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Fifi clothes sale, proceeds to a local charity

Hi Val
Could you put our  Friperie poster on TAG, please. This year, as well as good quality (mainly women's) clothes and accessories, there will be stalls from members of the FiFi Business Forum, including gardening, cakes, gifts, crafts, aloe vera and jewellry. Refreshments will be available and entry is, of course free. The date is Saturday, 18 April from 10am at the Salle des Fetes in Verfeil (82).
Thank you
Doreen

One adorable dog, a dog called Eldo / adopted

He may only weigh 10 kilos but he has long legs standing at about the same height as Bonny. He is very slim with a good shiny coat. I am trying to pin down his lineage, he looks to have a bit of pointer, labrador,border collie in truth quite a mix but all adding up to a very pretty dog. 
We cannot get over how calm he is, well trained for an 8 month old puppy, listens to your voice and commands and acts on them. A bright little button who the cats after just one night pass close to him without a flick of an eye from anyone of them.
Bonny has amazed us as generally she does not like young dogs, she hates being pestered and always gives a warning growl. Eldo does not pester and Bonny does not growl.
If anyone wanted a super beautiful boy, this could be the one for you. He needs a forever home and soon.
Why are we not plannng on keeping such a super dog?
We do not think it is fair to have a puppy at our age which is why we would consider an older dog.
Malc is disabled and finds it hard to walk a dog on the lead a he often stumbles. A young dog needs good long walks and lots of exercise maybe for the next ten years and we may not be able to continue to do that.
I spoke to his previous foster parents this morning who feel as one is still working, the other is a new grandma and they have four dogs, they cannot take Eldo back. They had nothing but praise for him and after just a few hours we can see why.
I was determined to get him rehomed before and now I have met him am even more determined.
This morning  I had to go early to the medical centre for a " prise de sang" and Malc says he cried at the door when I left.( the dog not Malc)  I do not want him to get too attached as it will be too hard for us both when he leaves.
To meet him, he is now with us and to see him without any obligation contact  taglines82@gmail.com

Banquet not wasted

The King of Spain cancelled his official visit to France as a result of the Airbus crash in the Alps, but the food proposed by the Mairie (Hotel de Ville) and the Elysee Palace to entertain the King and Queen has not gone to waste.
In a particularly republican gesture the food was divided into "plateaux repas" and distributed to the winter refuges housing the poorest people in Paris. It's not known if anyone said "let the poor eat the cakes".
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Sounds like a sensible statement

Any comments on this?
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They are just men or women

A  young man who was planning on getting married age 34 had a problem with his eye, He had treatment for it from an ophthalmologist in Albi, his local doctor and a pharmacy.  During the treatment given the young man got worse, sought advice again was told to continue with the treatment as the problems were just side effects. The young man died a few days later. The family are seeking an inquiry and the three  medical professionals were arrested in Albi and investigations are underway.
One places so much faith in the medical profession these days but these people are not gods and mistakes can be made and sometimes even if with the proper care there are instances of misdiagnosis
This was in the Depeche and it was quite a story.
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Nous sommes jeudi, le vingt six

continuing translating Le Petit Prince
J'ai ainsi vécu seul, sans personne avec qui parler véritablement, jusqu'à une panne dans le désert du Sahara, il y a six ans. Quelque chose s'était cassé dans mon moteur.

So I lived alone, without anyone I could really talk to, until a breakdown in the Sahara desert, six years ago. Something had broken in my engine.
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Wednesday, 25 March 2015

TAG works sooo well

Hi Val, 
Thought I’d drop you a quick line to say how much I appreciate the power of TAG.

I’ve had my advert for Handyman 82 running with TAG since we settled in theis area for good. Although I still get a good deal of my work through word of mouth - I am so pleased with the number of enquiries I have received as a direct result of my advert - and with the number of those enquiries that result in contracts for work. 
I am always pleased to receive feedback from clients. Most recently I was sent a note of thanks for a large decorating contract "We are delighted with your work - it looks fantastic, and we have finally found someone who has the same high standards and attention to detail that we (try to) have.”
So, may I say an official big “Thank-You” to TAG - happy readers and happy advertisers - long may you continue!

Kind Regards
Simon 

Interior courtyards of Toulouse

Look at these wonderful courtyards in Toulouse  :http://bit.ly/18XrnDx

What a funny week we have had.

Fast asleep on our carpet at the moment is ... Eldo. I know, I know that little cutie who is looking for a home.
We were just recovering from the delight of Prince finding his true owners, such a happy ending for a very sick dog. Sitting having coffee discussing Prince, when a desperate email came from Maeva "Could you take Eldo for 15 days?" We knew Eldo had a very nice family looking after him, it works out someone we know in the Varen area was looking after him with their four other dogs. Today the lady of the family has been rushed into hospital for an operation and someone was needed for Eldo.
At the moment he is just getting used to everything, definitely knows cats and has no problem with them. Bonny likes him, can you believe and he is only 8 months old.(she normally does not like puppies)
I thought he was a tiny dog but he must be the same size as Twister our  lab was but not as sturdy. He is very calm and well behaved for a young dog, we will let you know how it goes.
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The gendarmes at Sivens

Dear Val
Not only are they having bonfires in old oil drums and  standing in the freeezing rain, they are even playing ball to try and keep warm and pass the time of day. Whatever will they do next,actually get on with some work of some sort? Maybe we will be able to return to our quiet old ways soon
Ginny
Malc says are they any good at football? If so they are needed at Toulouse!

Another happy reader

Hi Val,
Just back from Montauban great place ordered our tiles .
Your site is a great place for info I read nearly every day.
Thanks again
Catherine

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Festival of art at Parisot


Open day at the Maitrise de Toulouse


Anyone want to see how the council works in Varen?

 Thursday, 26 March, 20.30 hrs. the Varen municipality meet in the Salle de mariage in the Mairie.
On the agenda:
- Minutes of the last council meeting (see the Varen site)
- Presentation of the management accounts 2014
- Presentation of the administration accounts 2014
- Transmission of "School and Pre-school affairs" to the Communaute de Communes

A much better date for the Salon du Jardin at Varen

We have a new date for the salon: Sunday 13 September.  Marcia Scott with the help of prize vegetable grower Ross Keightley have come up with a better date for the Salon du Jardin. More chance of those huge tomatoes and pumpkins to be on show. Put the date in your diary

One law for us another for them says Irena

Hi Val and Malcolm,
 Thought you may be interested in knowing that the riot police in the Forest Sivens are lighting fires to keep warm!!! It’s been spotted by us on one occasion and also by our friend who lives nearby. Not only is it illegal where they are doing it but it exceedingly dangerous.
 Bye for now,
 Irena xx

Folk'n'Jazz at Verfeil sur Seye

Thursday 26th March 8pm at Verfeil Salles de Fetes, Folk'n'Jazz are back after a months break.
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French TV - is it worth watching?

Of course it's useful to help with the language - especially the news and some subtitled programmes. But the quality is generally thought to be abysmal.  France is the only western European country whose viewing figures consistently show dubbed American series at the top. TF1, the ITV of France, is certainly dominated by such series and France 2 and France 3 are losing viewers steadily (France 3 down by 41% in 10 years). World wide sales of French made programmes amounted to 125 million euros per annum for the last 15 years, whereas the BBC has sales of 1.3 billion euros for original English made programmes.
Of course English language programmes have a potentially bigger audience, but the lack of appeal of French programmes is not just in their language. French viewers are voting with their remote controls and preferring internet based content, often from the rest of the world, as well as minor channels showing films and documentaries.
With very few honourable exceptions (mainly documentaries) French TV is the usual mixture of game shows, American or British series, talking heads and truly awful "variety" shows. With such a history of fine film making (and cinema audiences continue to grow) you would think that producers and directors would be working for TV - or is it simply infra dig?
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The happiest of outcomes for Prince

Malc and I feel so happy tinged with sadness, the owners of Prince have been found. We know for the dog that is the happiest outcome. He is a family dog and I was happy to hear that the family would pick up the vets bill proving that they really care about the dog. The dog is suffering with leishmaniose which would account for all the vets worries. The family are going this morning to pick him up and we were asked if we wanted to go but declined, as long as Prince is going to be happy and cared for then we are pleased.
This does show how important it is to change the address on the puce, just about impossible to trace if the details are not correct.
How is that for a happy ending.
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Clap those hands, stamp those heels

Impossible not to when it's flamenco. All week until 2nd April the Festival of Flamenco takes place in Toulouse. With concerts, guitar stages, dance and literary events at various venues aficionados and those just looking for a new experience, Toulouse will echo to the claque of heels and castanets.
Top event is at the Halle aux Graines on April 2nd when Nina Pastori is on stage. Considered one of the leading modern exponents of the art Pastori has sold over 2 million records in Spain.
Details on the website: http://www.festival-flamenco-toulouse.fr/programme/ 
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We are not dwelling on the air crash in the Alps

Our sympathy to all the families and everyone involved in the terrible air crash, the worst ever over France. The papers and news are full off it but it is too sad to dwell on.
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Crime ridden and seedy, Marseille

A new eight episode programme will be on the screen in the autumn. Set in Marseille, the second biggest city after Paris, the episodes will delve into the dark underworld of this crime ridden city. The lead characters do not include any police officers. "We chose Marseille because it's a city with an absolutely incredible personality," said Dan Franck screen writer, sitting with  Pascal Breton producer in a bar overlooking Marseille's colourful historic port. "The ghettos are a character. The politicians are characters. That's what interests us, it's not about standing up or tearing down Marseille's image. Val says that should be interesting but I imagine also a bit frightening.  
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The TAG office is not Breakfast at Tiffany's

Muesli, tea and pets, not really the smart breakfast at Tiffany's, the morning TAG office is a hive of activity.
So who are all these TAG readers we edit TAG for? Yesterday I did send round the subscribers list with news of the air crash. Also we tell people about TAG wherever we go, often receiving a "we are already TAG readers" told back to us. Others shout it out to us as we walk round markets "we read TAG everyday" Perhaps we should have badges made "We read TAG everyday"
Why are we so bothered about readers numbers? All the advertisers need to know their word is getting out in the region, to rehome pets we need readers, to arrange events we need you to come.
Malc and I enjoy keeping up with the news and the TAG office on a morning is a hive of activity.
You would love our office on a morning, two sofas loaded with cats fighting for position on knees beneath ipads and Bonny playing turns at cuddling first one set of knees and then another. But like any office the sub editor and I are discussing events and deciding if the story is worth pursuing.
Mentally we are not retired, we have a job to do.
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Nous sommes mercredi, le vingt cinq

terraced house - une rangée de maison
semi detached house - maison jumelée  says the dictionary.
 Julia tells me she would say  une maison collée à une autre.
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