Monday, August 25

I find out where all the sausages come from

25th August
A woman who the French would describe as costaud cycled into our yard this morning, I've passed her place and watched agog as she worked; wielding a chainsaw, hefting sacks of animal feed and tending an impressive potager.

Today Mme Costaud mumbled something about whether I'd like to look at her cobwebs and I pedalled with her back up the road to look at a great barn hung with huge webby drapes. I now don't know whether to feel better or inadequate about our cobwebs in the Lovely House.

Mme Costaud, has very badly fitting false teeth, the little she says is virtually incomprehensible, she gave me a tour of her smallholding. She keeps a few of every kind of beast including hares which are set free when they reach maturity, to make up for the ones she shoots when she's out hunting, she also raises pigs for other villagers and when the time comes... she showed me the pulley and hook where the pig is hoisted, throat cut, the blood is kept for boudin noir. The body is carted off by it's sponsor to be turned into chops and charcuterie. I happen to know that Scary Eena always has a couple of the Costaud pigs and is famed for her rillettes. Remembering that the sideboard in the Lovely House is actually a pig scrubbing trough with a board over it, I asked whether I could pay to keep a pig at her's for next year, Mme Costaud was blunt on the issue and responded simply, non.

The Costaud family were against the construction of the Salle des Fetes and, until recently, have all boycotted the place. Her son has now become a double agent visiting both the Bar and the Salle - the family is riven, father and son are no longer on speaking terms.

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