Thursday, 31 May 2012

Unicor and kitty

There I was in Unicor picking up yet another hen, the fox got one and left one.( the farmer down the road lost 150 in one night ) As I ordered, the supplier asked what colour I wanted. I said ' any colour' as I do not think the fox has a colour preference! At this point a rather beautiful very young ginger cat jumped up on the counter. Giving her a stroke was the opportunity the commercant needed to show me upstairs ( get real - I am 66 ) In a box was a tiny ginger female kitten about three weeks old, what a pretty thing she is. Anyway as you can guess she needs a home in about 4 weeks time. If you go in to Unicor in Varen I am sure you will be able to see her if you ask. I thought all gingers were Toms but not so. If through TAG we can rehome a 12 year old cat, we surely stand a chance with an itsy- bitsy kitten. Unicor is near the boulangerie and the cemetary.

Zumba and Pilates again

Un petit rappel qu'il y aura un cours de Zumba 15h et, le matin 10h30 Pilatesà Septfonds cette dimanche 3 juinDe plaisir et de l'énergie pour toute la famille (enfants bienvenus a partir de 10 ans)amenez un ami ou deux (demi-tarif enfants/etudiants et plus de 65 années gratuit). Vraiment hâte de vous y rencontrer.
Kim on 0563302787

Laguepie needs a cash machine

Here is an article from the Depeche about a meeting tonight where the lack of cash machine at Laguepie will be discussed. It won’t be the only subject though.
Gill Catterall
Gill has since phoned the Mairie and it will be the only item to discuss. We need that cash machine so try and go.

Will it work?

Pay cuts of up to 68% for bosses of state owned companies. For example Henri Proglio Chief Executive of EDF earns a reported 1.55 million euros, 64 times more than his lowest paid employee. His salary is set to plunge to 496.000 euros.Prime Minister Ayrault is sure they will understand that they must lead by example. In all 36 businesses which are part or wholly state owned will be affected.

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Art in the Aveyron

Resi van Eeten is opening her own Art Gallery and would like to invite us all. The date of the opening is Sunday 10 June from 17h00. Resi's work can be seen in her permanent Gallery, 'Residence Ambert' in Saint Grat open every Sat. afternoon 14.00 till 18.00 hrs. between April and Oct. or by appointment.
Resi can be contacted on  tel. 0565298752
Her art seen  below

Varen Regatta 22nd August

The date has been fixed for the Varen Regatta, Wednesday August 22nd. This will be the 9th year of the Regatta. For those who have not been to watch, to picnic or participate, you need to be there between 10 and 10.30am. Next to the course which is a clear run from the Moulin de Varen upstream for 400 metres round the balloons and back to the Finish line, there is a picnic area under the poplars and with toilet facilities. There is also a possibility of Moules frites or omelette and frites at The Moulin for those who would prefer that to a picnic.
For those participating in the race you need to be there to sign on and read the rules before 10.30am. Entry is free and canoes are provided, all the same handicap, your only handicap may be your partner. The teams are chosen one man, one lady by being drawn randomly from a hat. If you win your heat you will go in to the semi final and then the final. There is also a children's race, under 12s for an adult and one child. This year we are hoping for an added event of ' The Fifi Challenge Cup' where the ladies of the Fifi group are pitting their strengths and canoeing finesse against each other. After the races the important prize giving takes place BEFORE your picnic begins. More information will be given nearer the time but another tip, come early to unload your picnic tables and chairs. As in previous years we are expecting a good turn out.

Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Jessie the cuddly cat / Found a lap

Jessie the Burmese cat is still looking for a new home as her present owners just cannot keep her because of work commitments. If you think you could offer this healthy, trouble free cat a good home contact tel. 0563272684 or mobile 0674000492  Home found

Fend off Alzheimer's, learn French

Reported in Le Figaro, psychologists are now showing that being bilingual can fend off Alzheimer's Disease. Being bilingual helps you pass one piece of information to another and changes the centre of attention. Not sure what that means but I like the idea of holding back Alzheimers on average for about 5 years.

Met a couple of people at the Vide Grenier at Varen who did not know how to contact me at or Also there is always confusion on posting comments. When you send them they are not printed and posted until I have checked them and then they are posted under the post it refers to. Val Johnstone  Also our telephone number is 0563 64 06 73

Monday, 28 May 2012

Salon de Printemps

The Spring Exhibition is now open in the Marie at St. Antonin. The exhibition was opened by Andre Laban who was a photographer in the Cousteau team and is now well known for his underwater paintings. Cathy Pomar the organiser is pleased to welcome us all to view the exhibition. There are 80 paintings by French, Dutch, English and American artists.

Sunday, 27 May 2012

Amuse-Mot a Bruniquel

Prochain Amuse-Mot à Bruniquel *
 * dimanche 24 juin*
Vide-bibliothèque ouvert à tous
* inscriptions au 06 62 27 97 98.*
2€ le mètre
 Lectures sous les arbres
 lire et partager un texte de son choix
 inscriptions au 06 75 38 21 01
 Jeux d'adresses et de stratégie géants
 pour petits et grands
 Buvette et restauration sur place
 *Entrée libre*
What a lovely idea.Sell some books, buy some books, go along and read a poem  or a text of your choice under the trees at Bruniquel, drinks and something to eat and if you want a stall 2 euros a metre. For young and old alike.

Saturday, 26 May 2012

Vide-Grenier at Arnac, Fishing, Petanque et Vins

Saturday June 2nd Vide Grenier 9 till 18 hrs.
9 to 13hrs Concours de Peche for children under 12 at La Pisciculture d'Arnac.
14h.30 Concours amical petanque en doublettes
15h30  Degustation et vente de Vins
Buffet Campagnard 13 euros
Inscription sur place.

Laguepie Vide Grenier / inscribe now

Sunday 15th of July and Sunday 19th August will be the Laguepie Brocante, Vide Grenier and Vide Garage. Rapidly becoming the biggest and best around [along with Najac of course] There will also be a display of 'Retro Vehicules'  If you want to have a stand you need to get your name down now. Tel 05 63 30 20 34

Friday, 25 May 2012

"Coup" d' été?

It's not only the Queen of England who doesn't carry money!
How often do we hear "I couldn't live in a small town where everybody knows your business."?
The Shepherd of Sommard set off today to get himself sheared in readiness for the summer, after having called in to see JoJo at the decheterie in Varen to dump the cupboard doors Val wouldn't take for her chicken run.

aside: And what's so special about double yolkers? We had one today. Point of lay hens too! Wonder if it's something to do with young hens being chocka with a lifetimes eggs!

Anyway back to shearing.
Shepherd: Qu'est ce que la chance d'un shearing?
Coiffeuse: Tres bon. Tout de suite?
Shepherd: OK. On y va.
Coiffeuse: assis toi.
Shepherd: Attang! J'ai pas des sous, chequier, rien.
Coiffeuse: N'importe passe avec le quand te veux.

Amazing eh? She didn't know me from Adam but was willing to trust me. It happens so often here. That's why I love living in a small place.

Shepherd of Sommard

Upholsterer and furniture maker in St. Antonin

Re-upholstering a much-loved piece can be a very cost-effective way of furnishing your home or gîte with one-off, original pieces. Those of you who enjoy hunting around the Brocs and Trocs for bargains may be interested to know that Gareth Jones, at Maison Noble Val in Saint Antonin, offers a re-upholstery service. He has fabrics to suit all pockets, from stock fabrics priced from 15 Euros a metre to designer fabrics from 30 Euros a metre.

Gareth has been making and designing upholstered furniture for 16 years. His Fine Arts degree stood him in good stead when he worked on designs for Marks and Spencer, Laura Ashley, and Terence Conran amongst others. As well as being the sole supplier of upholstery for Marston and Langinger and a number of independent retailers in the UK, he has also made and supplied caravan interiors, as well as private jet and speed-boat seating. 

Gareth is currently based in Saint Antonin Noble Val (82) and, with his wife Michelle he runs an interiors boutique, Maison Noble Val, on the Place de la Halle, number 23. They offer their own range of high quality sofas, armchairs and upholstered goods, designed and made in Saint Antonin. They are also pleased to announce that they have just launched a range of bags under their label 'Coucou', made with designer fabrics and luxury Italian leather detailing.

Michelle and Gareth would be delighted to discuss any future projects and look forward to your visit. Maison Noble Val is currently open Wednesday to Saturday afternoons and Sunday mornings or by appointment. Please contact them via e-mail- or by telephone- 05 63 30 56 62 / 06 05 16 91 30.

*Special May/June offer to Taglines readers while stocks last!*
We are able to offer a 10 euro discount on our range of hand-made ‘Coucou’ large shopping bags, currently selling for 59 Euros. Just mention the Taglines blog to claim your discount!

Specialist Alpine Battalions

Specialist Alpine Battalions, 27th Battalion de Chasseurs Alpine and French Task Force Tiger Patrol have been a significant asset in fighting in Afghanistan's high altitude battlefields. There are 3,500 or 3,300 French soldiers in Afghanistan ( depending on which report you read ) 82 soldiers have died in incidents in Afghanistan since 2001, and three quarters of French people want the soldiers to leave. Last year England had 9,500 soldiers there and there have been 414 deaths

Elections Legislatives

In the Depeche they have on line polls which you can click to vote.' Resultats du Sondage' today were Parti Socialiste 37%, UMP 20%, Front de Gauche 9%, But Front National 21% The elections legislatives are on the 10th and 17th of June to elect the 14th National Assembly of the 5th Republic.

Thursday, 24 May 2012

Two tips from Terry

Terry Tippett at Parisot gave a second Gardening  Masterclass to the Ladies of the Fifi group yesterday. Terry was showing us how to make up our hanging baskets and the first revelation was to go out and gather moss from walls to line your basket. Make sure the baskets when made up are fed twice a week and watered twice a day, even when it has rained. Another idea  we discussed was how we did not like the plastic hanging baskets and prefer wire ones.  These are hard to find in France  but haunt the brocantes and you can often find interesting substitutes.  I have a collection of wire baskets and  also some I think that  are snail collectors bought for one euro
Second tip , because of all the rain it is not too late to continue mulching, so that old pile of donkey manure is going on the rhubarb today.
If you have not discovered Terry and her lovely healthy plants  which she sells and you are a gardener, find her.

Holland and Cameron Agree

Obama and Cameron endorse Hollande's call to kick start the euro zones ailing economies, leaving Merkel stranded. Read the story on News 24 ' Hollande turns the tide against Merkel's austerity.

Cause for Concern around Caylus

The helicopters at Caylus Military Camp are becoming a real nuisance and giving cause for concern to local residents. Colin Scott on the morning of the 22nd took photos from his window of 3 helicopters just above his house and grange 50 metres from his front door. Reports in the Depeche of frequent night flights and noise are becoming regular news stories. Let us hope something is done before there is a real 'catastrophe'.

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Two weeks and a double yolker

Henny and Penny have been here for 2 weeks and what have we got already, yes, a double yolker. It takes 2 or 3 weeks for the young hens to settle in before starting to lay . I reckon I have a couple of smashers with these two. Thanks for all the offers of doors and cupboards but none of them quite what I want, so I am off to Emmaus on Friday to see what is there that I could use for hen house making.

Two helicopters down

Two helicopters from the Caylus military base were forced to land in a field between Caylus and Espinas to avert a 'catastrophe' due to mechanical problems according to the Depeche. The area has now been secured by the military and gendarmes

Cannot be classed as Human

A young boxer dog of 6 months was attached to a car by 3 people who then set off at speed for 1 km. before being spotted by some passing Pompiers. The story in the Depeche says the people can barely be described as human. Sadly two of the dogs legs were badly damaged and the picture in the Depeche is horrific. The young dog was taken to the vets and then to the SPA at Montauban, Refuge du Ramier, Chemin du Tange who have launched an appeal for help with his vets bills to pay for operations needed. Tel. 0563208032

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Warm lap needed

Our Blue Burmese cat is called Jessie, she is fully inoculated etc, as fit as a fiddle, 12 yrs old
and requires a new lap to sit on. She is very affectionate and loves people. Not too keen on other cats
or dogs but will tolerate if they are calm. We have to work away a lot this year and feel Jessie would benefit
from a more stable home.....she hates catteries so that is out of the question. 
Tel 05  63 27 26 84  or mobile 06 74 00 04 92

Vide Grenier at Varen

Sunday 27th of May  will be the first Vide Grenier to be held along the banks of the Aveyron at Varen. Buvette et Restauration sur place 5 euros. Reservation 05 63 02 61 31 or 05 63 65 49 19 .Organised by St. Josephs School in Varen.

French Tax Returns

If you are liable to make French Income Tax Returns (even if you have no tax to pay) they have to be submitted by midnight on 31st May.
If you want to submit via the internet (and it is really no more difficult than doing it on paper) you have extended deadlines dependent on the number of the department in which you live. For 81 and 82 it is 21st June for Aveyron, dept 12, it is 7 June 2012. The government site below is where to start.

What a good idea.

If I am going to put more work in to publishing gite and house sales [that will be the next label] I would like to see some benefit and so I have had this brilliant [methinks] idea to charge 30 euros each entry for a 6 month display period. At the end of each 6 months I will decide which charity will benefit. You will be able to pay cash  preferably, or cheque and I will give a receipt. If this needs posting I will charge 32 euros to cover admin. Look at the adverts placed so far and work out yours in similar style. We have around 100 to 200 hits most days with a surge up to 400 when I send round the"'look now" directive. It is by people knowing what you have on offer that you get bookings or sales so give TAG a try for 6 months and see how it performs. I have only been online with TAG for just over a year and  can see how with a bit of work I can make TAG work for us even more .I am sticking to the principle of it not being a money making venture but let's help charity. Other items and everything on the 'newsy' section will be as always totally free.

Monday, 21 May 2012

Fleet Street it is not!

When I am 'faffing about ' with TAG , Malc has been known to say ' it is not Fleet Street you know.' Does anyone know the expression for french newspaper headquarters in Paris ?

Why is Montpellier celebrating?

Montpellier have won their first ever Ligue 1 football title, with a 2-1 victory against Auxerre. The match was disrupted 3 times by unruly fans.

Mini skirts and laughter lines reminder

On the 26th Carol Wyer will be giving a talk at the Bookshop St. Antonin. Check out the post in books label for more information

Sunday, 20 May 2012

New tabs in TAG on-line

To increase the services offered by TAG we have added two new pages - one for gites and one for restaurants. I am asked all the time to add peoples' holiday homes, chambres d'hotes and gites to the TAGlines site and up till now have not really fancied all the work that might entail. As Taglines readership has grown and grown, (I must add through a lot of pushiness by me handing out cards and information where ever I go), I can now see we could promote our holiday homes with Taglines. When I started some years ago we did do little adverts in the paper copy which people paid for which covered the printing costs and people were pleased with the results. I might regret this but we will add a section on gites and see how it goes. If you want to include your property contact Malc or Val for more details. For the restaurants page we want your opinions and recommendations. Click on the tabs above to see how it will work.

Telegraph or Guardian / Figaro or Le Monde

Le Monde and Liberation support Hollande, Le Figaro is a right wing paper. Although my politics have always been towards a centre party ( always voted Liberal and practically worshipped Shirley Williams as she was the daughter of Vera Brittain) I want to give unbiased reporting to TAG . So if anyone sees any stories on French political life with angles they would like TAG to cover please let me know.

Check out the airport runs

It is the time now where we are all having visitors arriving at airports and to be honest it is a bit of a drag if you go often. So think about seeing who else is going for the same flight and if you are going and have a seat or two spare add your contribution to this worthwhile scheme. Look in the label car sharing to airports for more info. about this

Saturday, 19 May 2012

News of former French residents

Marjorie Mitchell who used to live at Verfeil with husband Barry is now living well and happy in Hyde in Kent. Sadly a few years ago Barry a Prof. and expert on worms ( who discovered an unknown, unrecorded worm and called it Marjorie after his wife.) died. Marjorie now has her son close by and has made contact with Geoff and Jean Lipscombe who also do not live too far away. This news via Jeanne Riondel, adjoint Mayor of Verfeil who still keeps in touch with her English friend. Di Coleman former resident of Paradis at St. Antonin who now lives in Loose Village in Kent is gradually adjusting to life with out her beloved Ivor. She still keeps in close contact with her friends here and her French neighbours have just been to see her and look around the area and visited London

Old roof tiles wanted

WANTED:  300 old canal tiles in good condition.  We are happy to pay the going rate of 30 cents each and we can collect.
Susan and Larry Hunt –

French Lessons in St. Antonin

Michelle Jones is currently offering French classes from September.
The courses consist of 10, two-hour sessions and cost 10 Euros per hour. A non-refundable payment of 200 Euros is due after the first session- if you don’t want to continue, you won’t be asked to pay.
If you are interested, please telephone 06 05 16 91 30 or 05 63 30 56 62 or e-mail for further details. Places are limited to 6 learners per course.
The emphasis is on improving in a relaxed, friendly atmosphere and the courses are tailored according to your ability.
Michelle Jones has worked as the Head of a successful Modern Foreign Languages Department in a secondary school. She has 16 years experience as a teacher and is qualified to teach French and German up to A-level standard (PGCE). She has also taught beginner’s Spanish and has recently worked as a Teacher of English as a Foreign Language.
Comments from students-
I would strongly recommend Michelle's classes to anyone wishing to start out, brush up or further themselves. I for one will be going back in the hope I've remembered all I've learnt and hopefully push myself a little more. Thanks to Michelle, I'm now not afraid to begin a conversation with anyone in French.(KS)
Michelle's lessons have always been professional, full of enthusiasm and most importantly engaging. We have learnt so much in such a short space of time and we are very much looking forward to next term! (LG)

Dancing in the Halles

The association Citrus are organising a series of Bals / dances in the local Halles through out the summer. They have held a very successful one at Caylus and the next one is in the Halle at Verfeil sur Seye on the 17th of June starting at 14.30 hrs. After that at Caussade on the 15th of July at 14.00 hrs. Everyone is invited and there will be traditional dances, Occitane and Scottish ( which is not Scottish as we know it but not far removed) For more info contact Coralie on Tel 0979083699 Make a day of it on the first date at Verfeil and have a treat by going to 'La Seye et Vous' for lunch. See if you can get Charlie to make you brandade de morue which is basically fish and potato and comes in a the form of a ' drap Basque' ( basque flag' ) as this is the region it originated from. A similar dish but more salty called estofineado comes from this region. Book well before on this day and for those who need it Charlie speaks English.

Last day of Terry Tippetts plant sale

Follow the signs from Parisot to Terrys Market Garden and make the most of Saturday afternoon

Au revoir Afghanistan

French troops to leave Afghanistan at the end of 2012, Hollande tells Obama. The announcement was tempered with a promise of help and support in other ways. This is quite an important election promise honoured and was a vote winner to many French people. That includes our French cleaner whose brother is in the army and has done two tours in Afghanistan. She and her family are delighted the troops are being withdrawn.

Friday, 18 May 2012

Read Elly Wrights comment

We are getting lots of feedback and approval on Malcolm letter to the Depeche. Read Elly Wrights comment at the bottom of the letter and also Charlotte Organs on the Tag back on line. We all hate to see the despoiling of the French countryside with no thought of replanting, but another comment from Charles with a totally different take.

Eggsotic home sought

It is now two months since the fox killed Hetty and Betty and I began to suffer ' hen deprivation syndrome' so the new arrivals Henny and Penny came last week. They are now both laying pigeon sized eggs,but it is a start. Sadly the hen house is beginning to collapse and although it was bought at great expense as a special hens home, it has never been much cop, or fit for purpose. I fancy having a go at designing a more exotic residence for which I would need an old wooden cupboard with doors. Malc has the ideal thing that he keeps his tools in but he has warned me off it. Has anyone got a cupboard they have been thinking of taking to Emmaus or the tip that they could offer for my new project. Do not go running to the ' hen protection society' with tales of hen house mistreatment as the one they are in will last a few more weeks and I will remember each night to close the gate to their enclosure. I can collect.. email

Jacqueline Yallop at Parisot Library tomorrow

Jacqueline Yallop will read from her latest book at Parisot Library tomorrow. See post in books for more information.

Salary cut for President and his cabinet

Francois Hollande and his cabinet have all agreed a 30% salary cut which in these times of austerity Jean Marc Ayrault announced was necessary.

Thursday, 17 May 2012

Hollande and Obama say 'yes'

Hollande and Obama meet today and for that meeting the French newspaper Liberation have mocked up a photo shopped image of the two statesmen getting married. This is because both statesmen have publicly said 'yes' to same sex marriage. They added that they might have a close relationship ... but not that close.

Equality in Politics

Seventeen men and seventeen women make up the Hollande cabinet. An election promise honoured and he gets my vote on this one.

Faire Le Pont

Today Thursday is a bank holiday for Ascension Day. Working people will take a days holiday tomorrow to make a bridge to the weekend and gain a longer holiday.

La Fete des Meres Sunday 3rd June

Sunday 3rd June is La Fete des Meres, a day where children honour their parents as in Mothers Day in England. Restaurants are usually booked well in advance for Sunday lunch.

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Anyone going to Holland?

Question for Dutch people:

Who is going now and then to Holland and especially to Brabant by car and

could take some boxes of books for me? I am collecting childrensbooks for

the association 'read to grow' in Boekel, who sends them to schools and

orphanages in Africa.

In Dutch: Wie zou zo nu en dan wat dozen boeken voor mij mee willen nemen

naar Nederland (in de buurt van Boekel in Brabant) die ik verzamel voor de

stichting 'read to grow', die kinderboeken naar Afrika stuurt?

Shape up with Kim

Sunday 3rd of June, Pilates from 10.30 till 12, and Zumba from 15.00 to 17.00 hrs. at the Salle des Fetes at Septfonds with Kim Ilsley fitness trainer. 13 euros each class or 20 euros if you do both. Reserve your place on tel. 0563 30 27 87 or email

Jean Marc Ayrault is Prime minister

Mayor of Nantes, and long time ally of Francois Hollande is the new Prime minister. One of his strenghts being his fluency in German, a former teacher of German and having a good knowledge of politics in Berlin.

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Malcolm's letter to the Depeche

Et si c’était Brésil?

On est toujours étonné qu’on puisse continuer à dévaster les forêts amazoniennes quand on connaît bien que ça pose un grave risque pour l’environnement.
Mais ici en France il semble qu’il n’y a aucun contrôle sur les activités des bûcherons qui, avec la flambée des prix des carburants, en profite pour acheter des bois à bon marché et tout couper pour bois de chauffage.

Un bon système de sylviculture leurs, ou les propriétaires des terrains dévastés, verrait remplacer  ce qu’ils ont découpé en  replantant des arbres non seulement pour sauvegarder le cadre de notre paysage mais aussi pour  en avoir des sources de bois pour l’avenir.
Il est apparent qu’ils veulent tout arracher et laisser le travail de renouvellement à la mère nature.
Voici deux photos <avant et après> d’une route en Varen (82). Pendant plus de 50 ans cette route rurale a été boisée, mais maintenant presque nue, avec plus de risques d’éboulement.

Peut-on espérer qu’un nouveau ministre de l’environnement prendrait au sérieux  ce système qui laisse nu et dévasté des terrains étendus qui étaient auparavant des jolis bois. 
[ Read earlier post on logging on our route in Varen.]

Un Corps sans vie a St. Antonin

A dead body was found in the river between Feneyrols and St. Antonin Noble Val yesterday evening. The pompiers were called to the river banks to recover the body of a 77 year old man, now named as Jaques Jourdes of the Chemin de Santou at St. Antonin Noble Val. It appears the elderly man was trying to start up a pump on the river when he fell in. The man is well known and well liked in the area.

TAG back on line

Five days without telephone or internet connection was hard to cope with especially when we knew the cause. Loggers arrived just a few days before to cut down and lay waste to the woods up the winding road to our house. If only they would log properly, cleaning up and replanting, but it does not seem to be the way of it here.
We had read a letter in the Connexion  from some one in the Dordogne saying exactly the same thing. So not only did they snap the telephone  lines on a Friday afternoon but they blocked of the tiny road with great lorries refusing to move and being  quite aggressive with any one who complained. We have managed to get them to put a sign at the bottom of the hill to say it is blocked but  they seem incapable of putting one at the top to stop poor folk going down . Their shouts of  ' recule' when you have to back up and round bends with a sheer drop on one side, have not gone down well with us and the neighbours. One family got stuck driving  with a remorque  and to be honest I always weave an erratic path when backing up. Malc's photo gives you an idea of the devastation and our telephone line is still under those logs somewhere!

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Futon, sounds like a good deal NOW SOLD

FUTON FOR SALE   It has a wooden base with an attractive multi-coloured cotton mattress.  Use as a bed or fold up to use as a chair if necessary.  Useful as a spare bed.  As new:  20 euros
Contact Polly Fawcitt, (Parisot)  at 05 63 67 06 40
Will deliver in local area

St. Josephs, Varen. Open day,toy and clothes sale

Open day and Toy and Clothes sale for children. Sat. 12th of May 9-1pm .
Please come and have a look around our school and buy clothes and toys for your grandchildren or children. Very cheap prices all must go.
Please tell your friends and family.
We would love to see you.
Sent by Carinne Trinder

Bruniquel Plant Fair

13th of May at Bruniquel, the 4th Plant Fair will be held in the grounds of the Chateau.

Thieves caught at Caylus

Between the 1st of March and the 5th of May homes mainly ' maisons secondaires' in the Caylus area were being burgled at an amazing rate. The good news is that a young couple in their twenties who had just moved to the area have been caught and admitted to the thefts. The Gendarmes say they had set themselves up very nicely with fridge, sofas,tables, chairs and other electromenager gear. A third person is being questioned who the Gendarmes think may be a ' fence'.  So from Lacapelle - Livron to Caylus you can now sleep soundly in your beds.

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Help with french forms and website creation

Do you need help creating a French website ? I can help you. Basic websites from 200 €.
I am a local French auto entrepreneur who speaks good English and can also help you with the translaton of documents and forms.
I can also make phone calls and send emails in French on your behalf.
See my websites I have created at and
You can email me at or call me on 0602275565 (please leave the message)

Maurice Sendak dies at 83

The wonderful American illustrator and creator of 'Where the Wild Things Are' has died age 83. Cannot think how I can tie it in to French life but as he is a hero of mine I wanted to metaphorically light a candle for him. If you have not read this story to a small child you and the child have missed out. In France the book was published as 'Max et les Maximonstres'

Two million blank votes

Sarkozy lost the election due to two million blank votes says Sarkozy's spokesman, pointing the finger at Marine Le Pen. She  had told her supporters she would be posting a blank vote. '

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Francois Hollande speaks fluent English

Francois Hollande wants us to know that he speaks fluent English, infact is more fluent than Sarkozy. He says he will be able to converse with world leaders with out problem but in speeches will always speak French as the French nation would want him to do that.

Monday, 7 May 2012

Drought in Mali and we can help

A quick translation for the post below. The situation in Mali is very serious due to severe drought and hence no harvest. The Domaine de Sautou work tirelessly to support children there and are having a tombola to raise money. They are offering the exceptionally beautiful door as a prize. They hope you will buy and sell  some tombola tickets to raise a goodly sum.The draw will be 18th of August at the Domaine along side an African meal which we are all invited to. They thank us in advance and ask that we send our name and address to receive our tombola tickets by post which we can then buy ourselves and sell more to others.

Children in Mali


 Domaine de Sautou


 Tél : 05 63 65 72 64

 Via Sahel enfants d'Afrique.

 Chers amis,

Vous trouverez en pièce jointe la photo de la porte Dogon, qui est très

belle, comme vous savez les évènements très graves qui se passent

actuellement au Mali, plus une sécheresse qui met en mal les récoltes qui

seront inexistantes cette année.

Nous avons décidé de mettre en tombola une porte Dogon pour trouver

quelques fonds qui serviront à nourrir les enfants du pays Dogon.

 Nous aimerions vous expédier des carnets de tombola que vous pourrez

proposer à tout votre entourage.

Le tirage aura lieu le 18 août 2012 au Domaine de Sautou 82160-CASTANET

Autour d'une fête Africaine et d'un repas à laquelle vous êtes conviés.

 Merci beaucoup pour votre collaboration.

A très bientôt

 Winnie et Jean Marie

PS: Merci de nous envoyer votre adresse Postale pour l'envoi des carnets

de tombola.

Sunday, 6 May 2012

Francois Hollande is our new President

Good or bad for us ,we just do not know ... only time will tell.

Awaiting results

France 24 tells us that exit results are being published on the internet. I googled exit polls France and I can say no more till 8 pm. I have booked my holidays in Amsterdam.

Doreen Porter revitalized

Doreen Porter who writes and edites the Fifi newsletter is returning to her blog with renewed vitality.Check it out on

Exercise bike needed

Does anyone have an exercise bike that they aren't using at the moment?

I would like to borrow one for a couple of months while I build up my

leg muscles following my hip replacement.  Obviously I will collect and

return.  Thanks, if you can help email me on or

telephone 0563 31 13 24 and ask for Anne.

Concert in St. Antonin Church

The "Association pour la Sauvegarde du Patrimoine de Feneyrols"  organises on next Saturday 12 May at 21 h00 in St Antonin church a concert given by Ensemble Polyfonia. This Ensemble will sing various pieces of sacred music of Renaissance. A contribution is requested at the entrance to pay back the expenses and to collect some money for the rehabilitation of the Feneyrols's church. 

Saturday, 5 May 2012

A Year older, a year wiser [ the donkeys not me]

Our two donkeys Rosie and Lucy need to continue their education on walking round the lanes here. Last year they got used to cars, tractors and bikes passing but were really spooked when they met a child in a pushchair. So a lot of learning to do for young donkeys. They are now quite relaxed about having their saddles on and giving little children rides. What they need is to continue their walks out and I am hoping there are at least a couple of people out there who would fancy 'walking with a donkey,' If you are interested in knowing more or coming to see the girls to see if you would fancy it, just give us a ring Val or Malc on tel.05 63 64 06 73.  Do not think of wearing flip flops if you are coming as even a small donkey standing on your foot is quite painful.

Terry Tippett's Plant sale

Terry  of Terry Tippett's Market Garden near Parisot will be holding her popular Spring plant sale on 18th and 19th of May from 10 till 18.00 hrs. It is at Cornerave and will be well signposted from Parisot. Terry can be contacted on tel. 05 63 24 21 46 or mobile 0602 22 64 59

Friday, 4 May 2012

We do love our dogs

Having just read the item on garlic as a healthier alternative to tick and flea treatments I can say that we always used this on our pets as kids following the near death of one of our cats due solely to the poisonous collar we`d put on him!
Due to the pet passport scheme (this part no longer applies as of january this year) we had no choice for the last 10 years but to frontline our pets in order to travel with them.  Will definately look at trying garlic again now.
Other tips to consider are fresh ginger and a small slug of cider vinegar daily in their food for older dogs with arthritis and some dog experts swear by a day a week of fasting for dogs/cats as a natural worming alternative.
We can highly recommend the ginger and cider vinegar (though we also have our dogs on daily Glucosamine with MSN and Chondroitin) as a few years ago one of our dogs had regular arthritic attacks so severe she couldn`t walk and would scream if jolted at all.  For the last 5 years since her new regime she`s not had any such problems and is just a slower, stiffer, but pain free, 13 year old!


Seven Lovely Years in Varen

 Bonjour Val & Malcolm
Please find attached our response to "Life After France", hope it's not too long.
We enjoy keeping up with all the news via Tagline.  Still have all the Tagline Magazines you produced in 2003/4.
Kindest Regards
Jean and Geoff

We spent many happy years in France but never intended to end our lives in that lovely country.  Our decision in 2008 to return to England was a good move and made at exactly the right time – by 1 February 2009 we were back in the old country. In fact back in our  home town of Sandwich which we had left 7 years earlier for a taste of adventure in France.  Apart from a few minor blips like the stroke which Geoff suffered in 2010 (now fully recovered) and me injuring my leg in an accident (now fully recovered), life has been very good to us.
We found a very manageable property in Sandwich (near Dover) and have an easy to cope with garden which receives a lot of TLC from me. Geoff does miss his annual concerts which used to take place in our garden in Varen, but he is still very much involved in music;  playing piano in an orchestra, and has also formed a small dance band which is in the rehearsal stage.  Two years ago he bought an  accordéon  and is now an accomplished player (French style) and doing a few gigs with a Folk Dance Music group. (Does anyone remember him announcing at his last concert that he was going to retire?!!) He also finds time to play snooker each week.  All in all not bad for 81. His motto is “keep busy and stay alive”.
Over the past 3 years I have received private tuition in la langue français (just to keep my hand in), which has kept me very busy indeed, and I have again taken up my genealogy research. Having completed my own family tree I now help other people sort out their ancestors. A sort of “Who Do You Think You Are?”.
We both talk often about our experiences in Varen and the kindness we received from everyone in the village, particularly our neighbours, and we cherish our memories.
Best wishes to anyone who remembers us.   Jean and Geoff Lipscomb

Old Wives' Tale , it certainly is not.

If you want to get yourself into trouble try asking someone ''Is that an old wives' tale?'' Just what I did to the  Anne Grose comment left on  the dogs and tick collar post. I even went further sending the same query to Helen Graham. What I now believe is that garlic can be substituted for all the toxic collars and flea treatments and my dogs have already started on the new regime. I wonder if like Malcolm the dogs will only eat French garlic as of course it is locally grown. Embarrassing experience in the market at St. Antonin when asking the producteur about his garlic and he said "ail Egypt" ... with me backing off saying '  non francais seulement' Only to be told Egypt was the variety and the poor man had been growing it locally for years.
I attach part of the letter from Helen, but also check out the comment on tick and flea collars as Anne uses garlic tablets.
"Garlic has no side effects as it is entirely natural, which is why it is
preferred by many to chemical products.   I use one clove per day per dog,
chopping the garlic finely and adding it to food.  Some dogs will happily
eat a clove whole but there are other dogs who refuse to eat anything that
has had contact with it and so it isn't a remedy for them.
Garlic isn't suitable for cats, as they dislike it, but works with horses."

La Bergerie available October to March

If you know of anyone looking for an out of season place to stay our comfortable Bergerie is available each winter. It has every modern convenience and more importantly is double glazed with a Jotul wood burning stove and rather smart radiant heat radiators in every room.Wifi is of course  available. For a longer let we charge 650 euros a month and pay water bills and tax fonciere and habitation. Check out the property on      and contact Val or Malcolm  Johnstone if you would like more information.

Fifi 's newsletter

Click on the link below to read about Fifi's activities this month and in the months to come.

Thursday, 3 May 2012

Piano scores gratuit

Hello everyone, I have got a lot of piano scores [also some with violin] for an advanced player, Liszt, Mozart, Beethoven etc. Given gratuit.   Riet Okken,

Community link or regular nuisance?

People are saying 'but you do not let me know each time you post something new ' .Imagine if I did that, I would lose readers hand over fist but I am glad  some of you feel you need to get your Tag fix. Can I suggest  to these people that you become a follower  or bookmark to your favourite list and then you can look easily whenever you want. As Tag is becoming better known in the area the amount of info. coming in is growing so it would be impractical to keep sending. To new readers if you send your email address I periodically send out the reminder [ especially if there are  some sale items or useful news] and that way you remember to look.. Thanks once again to those who appreciate this community link and let me play at having a job!
Val Johnstone

Open House at The Donkey Refuge

25th and 26th of May 12 till 17.00 Come and brush and 'caresser' the donkeys.
Meals catered at midi but reservations needed. Coffee, cakes, ice creams  later.
donations of clothes, books, bric a brac welcomed.
Near Montaigu de Quercy tel 0563943847

English speaking babysitters needed

2 English speaking babysitters needed for a wedding on September 8th at Chateau de Cas near Caylus from 6pm until late. The children range in age from  4months to 5 years. Parents will be very much on hand so it will just be a case of overseeing the children, hopefully whilst they sleep! Please get in touch if you're interested and have experience with children. 

Mini skirts and laughter lines

Sat 26th of May at 11am. Carol Wyer will be at The English Bookshop in St. Antonin to talk about her first book  'Mini skirts and laughter lines' Carol has had great success with the book making  the Amazon Top Ten for women's fiction. She is now working on her second book.

House sale reminder

Household goods, fabrics,paintings,ltd. edition prints, records for collectors,books etc.
Sunday 6th of May 10-6pm also a raffle.
Chez Claire de Soissons, Campagnac. D8 between Cordes and Le Verdier. tel. 0563332863 or email

Author reading Parisot Library

On Saturday May 19th at 10.00. in the Parisot library, critically acclaimed local author Jacqueline Yallop will be giving a talk and reading from her new book ‘Obedience’ which was inspired by her life in the Aveyron.   I have attached a flyer which gives more information about the event, and which also gives a quote from Man Booker prize winner Hilary Mantel, one of the many acclaimed authors to have praised her writing.   You can find out more about the author and her books and read some impressive reviews on her website:   I hope you will be able to come along, and please do pass this on to anyone you know who may be interested.   I hope to see you on the 19th.

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

For sale

Pool heaters ,Camping car back and bike rack,Caravan Awning
 Thanks James Sweeting

Concert,Choeur Departmental del'Aveyron

Sat 12th May 2012, Eglise de Parisot, 8.30pm
Sun 13th May 2012, Chateau de Graves,  Villefranche-de Rouergue, 5.00pm
“concerto pour plusieurs voix”
To include,
·         Salve Regina – Lars Jannsson
·         Miserere – Gregoria Allegri
·         Cantate Domino – Claudio Monteverdi
·         Ave Maria – Franz Biebl
·         Bogoroditse Devo, Raduysia – Sergei Khvoshchinsky
Soloists Margaux Marty and Valérie Marque
Direction Jean-Pierre Cau
Tickets 12 Euro, concessions 10 Euro
Tickets can be bought at the door

(It is unusual for this choir to sing outside the Aveyron, profiter!!)

Could save you money

With May here already, many of us are going to be filling in our French tax returns over the next 30 days. It's strange how 12 months is exactly the length of time takes to lose all confidence that you can remember what figures go where!   

The Connexion newspaper recently announced that the average 2011 exchange rate between Sterling and the Euro, (which can be used instead of applying separate exchange rates at each specific date a payment is received in the UK) is 

€1.1514 to the £1.  

We checked that figure with a big firm of Anglo-French accountants with whom we deal from time to time. They tell us that the rate they use for clients is the average of the Bank of France month-end rates, and that for 2011 that figure is 

€1.1483 to the £1,  

which is more favourable to the taxpayer. Not a lot, but on a reasonable level of income it will save enough to buy a meal or two out!  And it's certainly a great deal better than using the 2011 year-end rate of €1.1920 to the £1.   

As a famous tax judge once said (approximately):  no-one is obliged to order his affairs so as to pay more tax than he must...
Sent by Karen and Chris Robinson

Dog found at St. Cirq. Caussade

We have found a young hunting dog wandering near our village and are looking after her temporarily.  She does not have an identichip or ear tattoo.  We have reported it to the Mairie and made enquiries locally and put up photos and contact details.  We are unable to keep her as we are frequent travellers and wonder if anyone knows of a possible good home for her. She is probably only 4- 5 months old, and very good natured, so we just want to find somewhere nice for her.

Jan Howard   Contact
Telephone Office: +33(0) 563031989
Telephone Mobile+33(0) 786266659


Festival du Livre d'Artiste

nous sommes l'association Mosaïque en Val ( Saint Antonin), qui organise le 11ème Festival du Livre d'Artiste du 5 au 13 mai. Ceci dans la médiathèque ( et dans la galerie des Génovéfains de la Mairie. Ce festival est le plus ancien de ce type en Midi-Pyrénées.
 Nous souhaiterions voir publiée l'annonce de l'événement d'ouverture, le vendredi 4 à 20h. Je joins l'affiche d'annonce et l'article qui va passer dans La Dépêche, pour vous donner tous les renseignements. Ainsi que le programme complet des expositions et ateliers.
 Sorry for writing in French: I'm sure you master that language just as well as your native language. Should you wish to receive a translation of any item, please don't hesitate asking: I'll do my best.
Renseignements: mon tél.  ( Marie-Bernadette Curato, que la plupart des lecteurs de Taglines connaissent par ailleurs). notre
Avec nos vifs remerciements.

Concert in Parisot

Choeur departmental de L'Aveyron will be singing in the Church at Parisot,  Sat. 12th of May at 20.30hrs. Tickets are 12 euros
The same concert will be repeated the next day in Villefranche de Rouergues,Chateau le graves 17.00hrs
for more info. contact Karen Robinson who will be singing on