Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Last Buzz to Montauban

La Guepe
This mini-bus is a rolling memory of the region.
The owner/driver was Monsieur Raymond Granier (1899 - 1984). He was also a historian, and we are indebted to him for numerous works about the area (see attached list).
From 1938 to 1972, he provided a service between Laguépie and Montauban 3 days per week. He also provided services to Albi and Carmaux. At week-ends La Guepe transported football teams to their games and young people to local fêtes and dances - a heavy workload, which did not stop during the war.
In fact, Monsieur Granier, in the service of the Resistance, transported British pilots, who had landed on French soil, to hiding places from which they could be smuggled back to Britain via Spain. He received a certificate of recognition from President Eisenhower at the end of the war.
In other circumstances, he would replace the seats of his bus with stretchers to transport the injured or ill to hospital at Albi,.
It is estimated that he and his bus travelled 1,500,000 kilometres.
In 1983, La Guepe was damaged in a flood which came halfway up her bodywork.
After his death, the Tourist Office at Montauban acquired the bus, with the idea of using her as a tourist vehicle. But the flood damage had been disastrous, and La Guepe was parked outside with old fire service vehicles. Fifteen years passed - burning summers, damp autumns, icy winters, foggy springs. One day, the city of Montauban, having decided to make other use of the land, decided to send the bus to the wreckers, but first contacted the Mairie of Laguépie, whose name was on the front of the bus, to see if they wanted it back.
They certainly did, and in order to give La Guepe her identity back an Association was formed - Retro Vehicule de Rouergue, or RVR.
Now, after her long purgatory, a long resurrection is starting and thanks to RVR, she will one day travel her old routes, so full of memories. Her first appointment will be with Tractomania in October at Caussade, where the chassis will be present.
Retro Vehicule de Rouergue, Laguépie - 06 81 12 90 09 or 06 24 25 11 45
Works by Monsieur Granier
Roqueréine, Laguépie, 1981
Une agence d'emigration vers I'Espagne en Bas Rouergue au 17° siècle, Paris 1971
La Forêt de la Grésigne des origines au milieu du 17° siècle Paris 1966
Jadis en Bas Rouergue, Montauban 1947
La Baronnie de Laguépie, 1929.
Les Minières de Penne, Puycelsi et les Forges de Bruniquel, Albi, 1978

by Gérard Carboneil

Monday, 29 August 2011

Feeney's Fundraising Again

Hi Val

We did quite well at The Auty vide-grenier and raised 200 Euros. We have
made an online donation of £176 to Breakthrough Breast Cancer and attach
their email receipt. Could you put this on Tag on-line, please, with a thank
you to everyone who donated items for sale and thanks to all those who
turned up to support us.

Many thanks,

Linda and Martin Feeney.

"Dear Martin,

Thank you so much for making a donation to Breakthrough Breast Cancer. We’re
delighted you share our determination to beat breast cancer.

Breakthrough Breast Cancer is dedicated to improving and saving lives
through finding the causes of breast cancer, enabling early detection,
ensuring precise diagnosis, discovering new and better treatments and
improving medical services.

Everything we do is breaking through – as the direct result of our work
fewer women die of breast cancer than 10 years ago. But breast cancer is
still the most common cancer in the UK – every 11 minutes a woman is
diagnosed with the disease. And this is why we must continue our life-saving
work and why we are so grateful for your support to help beat breast cancer.

To keep up-to-date with our recent work or find out other ways to help us
beat the disease, do visit our website again at http://breakthrough.org.uk
or get in touch with our Supporter Enquiry Team on info@breakthrough.org.uk
or 08080 100 200.

With thanks once again for your support

Sunday, 28 August 2011

Singer/songwriter ready to perform

Trevor CARTER, singer songwriter and past member of English folk dance bands "Oatcake Billy" and "Alf-Alfa", has been resident in France since summer 2010. 
He is available to entertain you with British Folk Music.  Tunes and songs, traditional and contemporary (including his own self penned songs with their wry comments on modern life).   Accompanied by guitar, English concertina and melodeon (diatonic accordion.)   Repertoire includes some Occitane music and introductions/explanations are  in French or English as required.
Resident in Tarn et Garonne (near the border with Lot and Aveyron).
To contact: Telephone 05 63 67 93 35;   email:  "trevor@carter82.net"
(Website  "www.edgemusic.org" is currently out of date, but contains information on CDs and reviews and has an active contact box.) 

Saturday, 27 August 2011

Computer software for sale

I have an computer software item for sale, which is an unopened copy of

Microsoft Office 2010 -Home and student edition [English version].  It

is in its sealed original package.  It was bought ealier this year in

the UK.  It needs a 500Mhz or faster processor, 256 RAM, 3 GB disk

space, and Windows XP with Service Pack 3 or better (eg Windows7).

Will accept 40 GBP for it.  The Home and Student edition has Word 2010,

Excel 2010, Powerpoint 2010 and Onenote 2010 on it.

My telephone no is 05 63 31 56 85

Thanks in advance

Peter Caborn

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Worthy Champions at the Regatta

Nick Lyne after being a regular participant, often coming second or third in the Regatta,  has this year with his granddaughter Sarah become a worthy champion. After seeing off the winner of the last two years, Frank McCarthy, Nick not in the best of health showed 'the young uns' how it's done.  What must he have been like in his prime? Thanks also for all the work Nick does in organising, getting the canoes on and off the water, putting out markers  and often manning the rescue boat between his races.
The children's competition was won by Nerys with her grandfather Martin Feeney, well done to both.
A record number of entrants made it all rather complicated to organise, with 5 heats and two semi-finals, races   not helped by people disappearing when their names were called for their race.
All that said a great day out was had and a splash of rain at the end did not dampen spirits nor the picnic.

News from Poor Paws about Dog Passports

A  bit of great news is that the UK is coming into line with other European countries and as from the 1st January 2012 dogs will no longer require passports to go back to Great Britain. No more blood tests or 24/48 hour tick and flea treatments. Your dogs only need to have a valid rabies vaccination of at least three weeks. We are so hoping this will reduce the number of dogs abandoned by Brits leaving France.
For full details see the Defra website and the link below will help.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Final reminder for Regatta 2011- big cash prizes?

Just in case it has slipped your mind the 8th annual Varen International Regatta is tomorrow - Wednesday 24th August..
So chill the champagne, iron your swimmers, gird your loins and get there at 10 am.
The Moulin de Varen for the canoe races and the camping for the picnic.
Rumours of a big cash prize may be unfounded.

I do like a good Wedding

Alex and Yuki Catterall  at the celebration of their wedding day held at the Chateau de Caz.
Alex is the architect son of Gillian Catterall of The Volet Bleu Gites and Cattery at Milhars.
 Beautiful Yuki struggles with the pronunciation of her new surname but I am sure she will soon stop giggling about it.

Monday, 22 August 2011

Second Book Swap

By popular demand the second book swap is being arranged for Sept 5th Monday 11am at the Gazpacho in St. Antonin.  I am assured that there are plenty of books to be swapped as a couple of TAGlines readers are clearing shelves. If by any chance you cannot make this date let me know your reading tastes and I will put some aside for you.Someone recommended two writers new to me Lee Child and Anita Shreve both quite different genres but both good reads, so thanks to the person who made that recommendation.Amongst books I will be taking are Hilary Mantel's Wolf Hall winner of the 2009 Booker Prize, Kazuo Ishiguro's Never Let Me Go. Not quite so worthy but 'blinkin good' Ian Rankin Watchman and Anita Shreve A Wedding in December. That's just a taster to whet appetites.

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Painting Course with Ann Herdman Smith

Inspired to explore your talents in painting?
2 water colour workshops
2nd and 14th September 2011
Exploration of techniques and colour - all abilities welcome.
10.00 until 17.00 
Please bring with you: your water colours. water colour paper, pencils, rubber, brushes,
and a picnic lunch.
Location tbc: will be in the Parisot / Varen area.
40 Euros  per person for each day. Welcome, one or both days.
To book and confirm a place, please e mail Ann Herdman on : aecm2010@live.fr

I look forward to seeing you soon.


Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Old times at Espinas

The Fenaison (harvest) celebration at Espinas, between St Antonin and Caylus will take place on Sunday 21 August.
Old time farm machinery, ploughing exhibitions, country pursuits pony rides etc enliven a very enjoyable day. And in the superb setting of Espinas it is well worth a day out.

A Stitch in Time

Penny Smith  who lives at  Septfonds,  before the Intermarche roundabout near Caussade offers a very useful service doing clothes alterations and repairs. She can make up curtains and cushion covers, clothes from patterns and my experience  tells me anything which needs a needle to it. She is English but speaks very good french [ if you pass on to french friends]  She can be contacted on
 tel. 06 33 78 61 71
I and other friends can highly recommend her work.

Figs a plenty

We have 3 very good fig trees in the grounds which supply much more than our needs. Although a few are ready now I reckon in a weeks time we will be 'over figged' So if any one wants to eat them or  make jam give us a ring and come with a bag to pick your own.  tel Val on 05 63 64 06 73. We are at Mas del Sol just  5 mins. outside Varen and although a winding climb up - worth it for the views.

Wardrobes for sale

Pair of matching wardrobes each with one hanging rail and two drawers.
Height 190 cm
Width  89cm
Depth   55 cm
These were flat-pack and assembled in situ.  The purchaser will need to dismantle them in order to remove them as they are too large to get out of the small doorway to the room where they currently are.
80 Euros the pair
Cat not included.

Tel : 09 62 27 92 61
Nancy Bennett

Saturday, 13 August 2011

Vide Grenier or empty your attic

Auty vide grenier Sunday 21 August (Route D22 between Caussade and Molieres). We have a stall in aid of ‘Breakthrough Breast Cancer’. If you have any items you would like to donate, we can collect from Saint Antonin or Caussade.


Finding Chloe

From Colin to Coleen and finally finding her true self Chloe Jane Oliver.
Well known in this area over the last 10 years or so Colin the builder has changed from cross dressing to trying to change sex and passing a very traumatic time here. We knew him initially as a nice guy who renovated houses, played drums for recreation and drank too much. Gradually over the years  from wearing nail varnish on the building site and womens underclothes  he moved on to totally coming out in womens clothing. A good looking guy who changed to an attractive women. He who is now she had a period running the bar and restaurant at Verfeil and imagine the talk around sleepy Verfeil! Sadly his marriage could not stand the change and he split up with his wife. There followed a difficult period again when the bar failed and he lost all his money. From this point he wanted most of all the operation to get rid of his male appendage and to find out if this has been achieved you need to read 'Finding Chloe' by Chloe Jane Oliver published by Mathias press, www.mathiaspress.com at                     £ 7.99. It is an autobiography of his life but for residents here the time spent in this area is  most interesting with lots of people named and shamed.

Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Jacques Fettah exhibits at the Abbaye de Beaulieu

An exhibition by Jacques Fettah called 'Quitter les Brumes' starts at the beginning of September until 31st October from 10 to 12 and 14 to 18 heures. 5 euros entry fee.
If you haven't visited the Abbaye it is always worth it - a beautiful building in a beautiful location.

Monday, 8 August 2011

France Inter reports

National french radio 'France Inter' reported this morning that 60 people had been hospitalised in the Lot and Tarn and Garonne because they had eaten poisonous mushrooms. A variety of cepe which is poisonous but looks very similar to the cepe we know called 'bolet de satan' [mushroom of satan] is being picked and eaten by holiday makers . The centre of toxicolgy at Toulouse and Villefranche hospital has been inundated with calls but so far no deaths just sickness and diahorrea . The experts and Doctors reiterate 'take them to the pharmacy for identification' if in doubt.

Sunday, 7 August 2011

More Concerts

More concerts
August 9, at 9PM :  Chateau de St Martin Laguepie, Vocals
August 9, at 9PM  : Eglise St Antonin: orchestre de chambre de Bratislava, Vivaldi, Mozart,Dvorak
August 16, at 9PM: Eglise de Cordes: Chants Russes
August 27, at 9PM: Abbaye de Loc Dieu: Choeurs de Sheffield,

For more concerts, watch the small guide  " guide des festivals de Midi Pyrenees 2011-2012"  extremely complete about other sites in the region  like:
Sylvanes, Soreze, Cahors , Conques, and more...

Compliments of Betrand Dezes

Saturday, 6 August 2011

It must be true - it was in the Depeche

Cepes are to be found in great quantities in the Aveyron area. All those cars you see parked next to woods have avid champignon collectors filling their baskets. We have been given cepes and cepes orange by a neighbour nearby with extensive woodland. As we did not know of the orange variety I duly went of to the chemist to have them checked. It is important you have all of the mushroom including the stem for identification to be made. If you are thinking of collecting mushrooms be careful that you have permission of the owner of the land as the farmers round about are getting stroppy about people taking the liberty of  roaming  through their woods. We know of a couple who had their car blocked by an irate farmer who refused to move his vehicle until the couple handed over their cepes. The agricultors know exactly where to find the mushrooms and which restaurant will give them a good price. No where near as pricey as truffles but clearly guarded just the same
I have made some delicious cepe soup from an Elizabeth David recipe and tomorrow we will fry the rest in butter with parsley - yummy.

Boutique Associative at Laguepie

The new charity shop at Laguepie renamed 'Vetiguepie'  is an association which raises money for 5 charities. I have checked their opening hours which are
Tues - Friday   9h30 to12h 15.30-18h
Sat. 9h30 to 12h
Next to the Post Office in what was a shoe shop.
Helpers to man the shop and donations of clothes and shoes needed. The shop is not big enough for other items.

Thursday, 4 August 2011

Tangled up in red tape?

Although we've been here 5 years, and speak half decent French, faced with putting an English classic car onto French plates, we decided to enrol the help of a young French lady who lives in Puylaroque (82).  Emmanuelle Dangé Mannella is carving out a career for herself as both as an official translator and interpreter, but also helping English speakers deal with officialdom in our part of France. 
With a classic car, some original papers the authorities need - like the dreaded Certificat de Conformité - never existed when the car was built.  So the chief problems to crack were sourcing various documents the Préfecture would demand in order to re-register the car on French plates.  
Our young helper was brilliant.  She didn't just pick up our questions one-by-one and make the necessary telephone enquiry, she actually took the initiative and made strings of calls, finding an alternative way forward each time we ended up in a cul-de-sac.  In other words she did just what you'd want : she took ownership of the problem and produced solutions, not just additional questions. 
And when it was time to present our dossier at the Préfecture in Montauban, Emmanuelle came along and held our hands.  She very much took the lead, quizzing the functionaries in anticipation of our questions, and didn't leave us until we had succeeded in getting the official French documents.
In addition to Help in Quercy, Emmanuelle's business is e-trad.fr for business users of translators, interpreters and language teachers.  Importantly, she is also a "traductrice assermentée", which means she can produce sworn document translations for official use - both from English and German, should that be necessary. 
She is also a genuinely charming character and the proud Mum of two young girls soon to enter school.  We cannot recommend her help strongly enough. Emmanuelle charges upwards of €25 per hour, but be assured she works fast and gets an awful lot done in the time!        
If you could benefit from this sort of assistance, Emmanuelle may well be able to help you.  Her contact details are :
Emmanuelle Dangé Mannella, 9 rue de Béral, 82240 Puylaroque, telephone 0033 (0)5 63 24 17 74; email e-trad@orange.fr 
If you would like any more information, feel free to ring us.
Chris and Karen Robinson

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

The 8th International Varen Regatta

The Varen Regatta will hold its 8th consecutive event on Wednesday 24th August, as usual at the slipway by the Moulin de Varen.
Inscriptions are free from 10.30am prompt.
Remember to bring a change of clothes and a picnic.
Details or helpers contact either Nick Lyne 0563 264202 or Malcolm Johnstone 0563 640673

Festival of Classical Music

Les Musicales de Rouergue is a series of concerts from 11th - 15th August.
11th August in the church at Salvetat des Carts -  Andoni Aguirre, piano.
13th August in the church at Lunac -  Guillaume Lachaussee, piano.
15th August in the church at Puech Mignon -  Sophie Partouche, piano, Eric Soucaille, tenor,
         Rachel Schiffmann, soprano.
18th August in the church at Najac -  Clemence Gouet, alto, Cedric Boyer, piano.

All the concerts start at 21.00 and cost 10 euros (30 euros for a group of 4).
Programmes are largely well known classics.

Des croches et la lune

The well established Verfeil festival "Des croches et la lune" (special mention here for the best translation of this!) takes place on Friday and Saturday 19th and 20th August.
Always challenging and entertaining with events for children during the day and concerts in the evening the festival is a must.