September is a beautiful month in South West France, well all months have their special attributes, but somehow September brings a calm and this year a cooling as the intense heat of July and August slowly faded. The misty mornings and the few light rain showers meant that the green of the grass began to show through again (we definitely need to get a grass watering system sorted by next spring) and the pool heater was on for a bit longer getting the pool up to temperature. Don't get me wrong the sun still shines and the sky is mainly blue and the temperatures are in the twenties (degrees C.) and SW France is a delightful place to be.
September is the birthday of our local town and for one weekend the community celebrates. The car park is transformed as local companies have stands to promote their businesses and there are so many tractors on display! Small amusements appeal to the families and the Saturday market spills out onto the road as the producers and vendors are attracted to sell at this major local event. A restaurant tent appears and a set menu provides lunch for all. On the Sunday there was a vide grenier. Very similar to a car boot sale but very interesting to see what French bits and pieces can be bought and sold. I was tempted this year and set off in eager anticipation of a great find.
Parking was most challenging on this morning but I found myself a reasonable spot and set of with a hunter gatherer spirit. Very soon, so very soon I spied a painting hanging off the boot of a car, not a print but an oil painting, it had caught my eye. I enquired as to the price, reassured myself that it was genuine and promised to patch the very small bits of missing paint with a few oils I have at home. I liked it so I bought it!
Back at home I decided to google the name on the left hand corner of my new acquisition. With baited breath the search engine revealed that my artist was "Known". He studied at the school of fine arts in Bordeaux in the early 1950's so to find one of his painting a couple of hours away was not such a strange thing. I decided that as a young artist he was probably staying with friends and painted this work during his stay, leaving it as a gift when he left....... well maybe! Anyway I think I have a lovely painting and I don't think it is going to be worth a fortune but to be on the safe side I have decided not to fill in the bits of missing oil paint myself!
I'll finish on a "first", it was the first time this week that someone...an English person thought I was French! Admittedly the verbal exchange between us was short and I suppose one shouldn't and wont been too enthusiastic or self congratulatory about ones progress in this language until it is indeed a French person who thinks I am French!