By Julia Dunbar
‘We spend our whole lives searching for all the things we think we want, never really knowing what we have.’
Taking a bit of a frivolous look at that quote I think for sure I have got too much, too much in the way of possessions that is. A lifetime of amassing stuff means that you seem to have a surplus of things in cupboards, drawers and boxes, sheds and barns that you never use, but as you have the space you hang on to them. I am desperately trying to have a clear out – how many times have I heard that before! I recently came across my children’s old school reports – do I throw them out, they are not of any use but my son said just put them in a bag somewhere! I have things from my mother’s house; do I hang on to them for sentimental reasons? – I remember she often said ‘nobody will be cleaning my brasses when I’m gone’ – she wasn’t wrong. But then again we often had some nice times together looking through old photos – do I keep them all I must also try to stop going to that cheap store in Guéret (you know the one with three letters in its name) and buying stuff at a reasonable price that you didn’t know you needed and filling up another drawer. I will continue to sort and throw, recycle and reduce and try to be more of a minimalist – dream on!
The municipal elections are in the news, for those who have registered to vote 23rd March is the first voting round followed by the second round on the 30th, a good opportunity to be part of the community.
I think our cup of tea catastrophe over the computer which occurred last month and caused us no end of problems is now famous in the Creuse! – hopefully all is back to normal this month.
Of course it wouldn’t be right to not talk about the weather, sunny warm days mixed with cold, windy weather, very little snow up to now, all very strange and here we are in March already. On my recent visit to England there was evidence all around of the violent weather they had been suffering, I think in general so far we in the Creuse have been exceptionally blessed.
I must carry on with my throwing out regime, really can’t bring myself to get rid of books though –
‘To know a man’s library is, in some measure, to know a man’s mind.’
See Julia Dunbar on the recent broadcast on French television - in the channel M6 programme “100% Mag” - talking about life and work in the Creuse:Le Limousin, nouvel eldorado des Anglais?
SALE OF CHILDREN’s CLOTHES, SHOES, BABY EQUIPMENT (ages from 0 to 16)
At the Salle de la Sénatorerie, Guéret on the 7th and 8th March, the 7th 9.30 to 6.30, the 8th 10 to 5pm
Organized by the Assoc Familiale de la Marche. More info on 05 55 52 08 00
FIRE AND MONOXIDE DETECTORS
From March 2015 all homes must have smoke detectors placed on each floor and monoxide detectors placed near the source of combustion.
Only 20% of French people, according to a recent poll, check the pressure of their tyres each month, an mportant habit to get into as under inflated tyres, break less well, heat up more quickly, consume more fuel, ives less life to the tyre and over inflated adheres less to the road and gives irregular wear to the tyre. The numbers on a tyre mean for example 205/55 R16 91V – 205 is the width, 55 the height, 16 the diameter (in inches), 91 the load and V the maximum speed (there is a scale).
MOST POPULAR NAMES IN GUERET
Mathis was at no.1 in 2012, for the boys,in 2013 it is Enzo, Lucas and Timéo in the top three places, followed by Louis, Jules, Néo and Nathan. Louis and Jules appear for the first time, a trend in choosing older first names. For the girls, in 2012 it was Cloé, Océan and Lilou, 2013 it is Chloé, Anaîs, Louna, Zoé and Léna. Since 2005, parents choose the surname for the first born, it can be that of the father, or a combination of mother’s/father’s or father’s/mother’s, once chosen the other children then have this surname and it cannot be changed.
LES REUNIONNAIS EN CREUSE
Réunion Island in the Indian Ocean, east of Madagascar has a population of 840,974 and is one of France’s overseas departments, in fact Réunion is an outermost region of the EU and as one of the 27 regions of France has the same status as those situated on the European mainland.
The Creuse has for a long time had a connection with La Réunion, but the history of this connection was somewhat ‘pushed under the carpet’, and is only recently being discussed in the open and in Parliament.
The story of Réunion and the Creuse began in 1963 and continued until 1982, Michel Debré, the MP for Réunion at the time was instrumental in the idea of sending Réunion children to the Creuse. The Creuse was suffering from depopulation, the Réunion was over populated with many poor families. ‘Les Enfants de la Creuse’, as they became known later, were Réunion children taken from their families with promises and some lies, that their lives would be better in France, there were promises of the possibility to study and return to the island on holiday.
The reality was rather different; these children were taken from their roots, their culture, their language and taken from a tropical island to the Creuse and some to the Cantal. Their roots were not explained to them and for some it wasn’t until adulthood that they found out that they still had family and connections on the island. The story was brought to light in 2002 when a Réunion exile Jean-Jacques Martial brought a legal action againt Michel Debré for ‘kidnapping of a minor, roundup and deportation’ and in 2005 the Association des Réunionnais de la Creuse brought a similar case against the French Government.
However, it is now in 2014 that finally after much agitation by the MP of Réunion Ericka Bareigts, some 50 years after the events, that the French Parliament has passed a resolution assuring the respect of the private lives of each individual, giving access to their past and history. The ‘children of the Creuse’ deported from Réunion were not sufficiently protected the State showed a major lack of moral responsibility, Parliament has decided, they have a right to rebuild their past.
For many Réunionnais, life was a battle in the Creuse, now as adults they are happy to hear that the State has recognized their story, they will have an opportunity to discover their roots and the Association des Réunionnais de la Creuse hopes to obtain funds to take seventy of them on a remembrance trip to the island.
The exiled Réunionnais have finally succeeded in their battle to have their story recognized and they can now have the opportunity to put together their own personal histories, bon courage to them all.
In Brief March 2014
LIMOGES AIRPORT NEWS – NEW FLIGHTS
Beginning from 2nd July to 28th September LIMOGES-PORTO (Portugal) with Ryanair. Flights are scheduled for Wednesdays and Sundays from 33.99 euros, one way.
From 19th July to 28th September, every Saturday, flights from LIMOGES-AJACCIO (Corsica) with Chalair. In fact two destinations in one as the flight also stops over at Avignon.
Don’t hesitate to have a look at the new airport website www.aeroportlimoges.com to see full information of all the regular and seasonal flights. You can also catch up with them on their Facebook page.
MuPOP - A MUSIC MUSEUM IN Montluçon
A must for music lovers, the visitor is equipped with a listening device and can choose which pieces of music and information he wants to listen to on the museum tour. Audovisuels too, rare films, instruments, nostalgia, from the 17th century up to the 90’s, from tea dances to rock ‘n roll, brass bands to pop. An interactive and fun museum visit. The museum is situated in the old part of Montluçon next to Notre Dame church, a modern building blending in with old architecture.
Musée des Musiques Populaire de Montluçon, 3 rue Notre-Dame 04 70 02 19 62, open 16th Septembre to 30th April, 2 to 6pm, 2nd May to 15th September 10 to 7pm, closed on Mondays.
CHATEAU DE LA CAZINE
receives a star in the Michelin Guide
The chateau situated at Noth, just a few kilometers from La Souterraine has regained its one star status in the Michelin Guide. The group Barrasford Bird took over thechateau in 2011 and after a allot of refurbishment reopened in the Spring of 2012. It has taken less than 2 years to recover the coveted star, chef David Boyer and Director Philip Babel are both delighted and a little surprised. But it certainly repays all the hard work that has been done at the Hotel/Restaurant.
Perhaps you would like to try Michelin star food yourself, lunch is 12 to 1.30, dinner 7.30 to 9pm, reservations on 05 55 63 97 10.
Believe it or not but the oldest Pink Flamingo in the world recently died at the amazing age of 83! He has lived in Adelaide zoo since 1933, he leaves his mate Chilly who is a mere chicken at just 60 years old.
THE CHAMBERS MOVE IN TOGETHER –
The Chambre de Commerce, Chambre de Métiers and the Chambre d’Agriculture have all moved premises, they can now be found in the Crédit Agricole building, ave d’Auverge, Guéret; hopefully offering a better combined service on three floors, with easy access for handicapped people. The Creuse Chambers are quite small so it is possible for them to regroup in one building, the only department in France where they can do this – obviously a case of ‘small is beautiful’.