This was going to be my Easter update.  I think I'll make it the 1st May update..........

Early in March we had a storm forecast. This was long before we had the volcano ash problem.   The storm arrived, with a vengeance, but luckily missed us completely.  All we saw of it was a rather fine sunset.

Yes, those poles are the same ones that are in the photo of the swallows.

As in previous years I took a trip 500 km north to make some annual inspections on balloons.  As always, I took the pretty route.

The yellow sign on the right of the picture below says 'A Vendre', for sale.  Anyone interested?

Trouble is, I don't know where I took the photo.

Of course I was using my GPS with moving map on the lap top beside me.  I set it to take the pretty route, of course, using little roads.  Some of them however were too little even for me.

The sign on the tree is a sign for a cycle path.

I bypassed this section and moved on to the next.  Oh-oh.

The red and white bars painted on the tree are route markers for a national footpath.  The sign just says, effectively, private hunting.

Now this sort of road, below, which was about 150 km later on the way than the one above, I can manage.

Next was not a trip north, but south.  Over the Pyrenees to Spain, for the day, in mid April.

About a week ago was the hunting society luncheon.  The emphasis was on the food not the ambience.  The second course was roast wild boar, the 3rd venison, for example.  There are only 240 people in our village.  Omit the children, and many of the Mums who stayed home to look after them, and most everyone was there.

To bring you up to date with my personal news.  I still haven't made a start on any of the jobs I mentioned in my Christmas Update Part One, although I did think about it one time.  The swallows are back, rebuilding their nest in the garage.  I wonder if they have the same problems selecting the place for their first nest that a human couple has when choosing their home?  You can imagine the sort of thing.  "I wonder if it will be warm and dry and quiet enough and safe from the cat?"  The cattle egrets roosting by the lake, recently up to about 1000, have disappeared,  They did the same thing last year, they must have breeding grounds somewhere.    Other household news is that 'we' are expecting kittens around 1st June.   Pica is already eating double her normal amount.  Other local news, a couple of days ago our mayor forgot the put the handbrake on when he parked in his yard.  He must have left it on a slight slope because when he came out again it had rolled into the river which flows past his house.  It was in good condition for the year too..........

Eleanor is now back from India, looking for a job, hopefully in Paris.  She has a Masters in International Law, specialising in in Human Rights and Humanitarian Law.  If you know anyone needing someone with those qualifications please let me know!  

Best regards

David Barker

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