October Walk

Guided tour Coutances Old Town on 16 Oct 2020.

An enthusiastic group from the Anglophone Association Coutances met for a guided walking tour facilitated by PAHC (Pays d’art et d’histoire du Coutançais). Many interesting and surprising discoveries were made about how life was led back in the Middles Ages and a detailed explanation given about the layout and architecture that still remains to this day.

Our eyes were opened wider on the town and its dwellers!

Mini golf at St Aubin des Preaux

This is a new mini golf course that we have not visited before, the course is well laid out and is quite challenging.
We had a picnic before playing and the weather was showing signs of rain, but being hardy golfers that did not stop us wanting to play!
Some of the players thought they were playing proper golf and hitting the balls quite a distance off the course.

It turned out to be quite a good day, looking forward to going again.

Walk at Montmartin sur Mer Plage

On Tuesday 23 June we had our first walk of the 2020 season, after a long period on “restriction” as a consequence of the Pandemic. After being unable to see our friends in the recent past this walk was very popular. It was the first event the Anglophone Association held after the “lockdown” and was conducted in line with the “restrictions” that currently exist.

The walk culminated on Montmartin sur Mer Plage and was enjoyed by two groups of ten keen Anglophone Association members [twenty in total] accompanied by five dogs. Congratulations should be offered to Louise and Dave for organising very good weather; they must have a direct line with the weather gods! The walk made us aware of the beautiful area in which we live.

As Dave said “it was voted in 2019 by readers of The Guardian as one of the top five beaches in France”. A number of photographs taken during the walk are shown here to give you a taste of this walk.

After the walk we all had a very enjoyable picnic on the nearby picnic tables at Hauteville. One picnic table was very sophisticated with a table cloth, in fact one wit said that all that was missing was the candlestick! And whilst some people demonstrated their culinary skills the writer’s picnic was supplied by the local supermarket.

In these difficult times it was nice to get together with some of our friends. Away from the walk, congratulations must be given to the Association for the support and the supply of essential information to all members during these restrictions.

Charity Lunch

(This event was filmed before the introduction of mandatory social distancing. It contained some flash photography.)
Members of the Association met on 29 February with the aim of raising further funds for our chosen charity, Sauveteurs en Mer. The occasion was a lunch prepared by members of the committee and hosted by Louise and Dave.

We met in what felt like a strangely developing situation as the Chinese virus epidemic was gradually becoming a world pandemic. Most of us were learning new ways to greet people without actually shaking hands. It all felt un-usual and something almost comical. Two dozen of us congregated and shared a welcome drink. We noted that a further seven members had bought tickets but sadly were unable to attend on the day, for a variety of reasons.
Louise welcomed us all and invited us to make a further donation to the charity if we so wished. Some photographs of the Association’s visit to the Sauveteurs en Mer station at Le Passous were displayed on a board. Louise and Dave’s home had been transformed into an elegant diner for the day with two long tables in her salon and a third table for the servers in her dining annexe.

Members of the committee were busy preparing in the kitchen and soon our eagerly awaited food was delivered.

The entrée was a beautifully fresh basil, tomato and buffalo mozzarella drizzled with virgin olive oil. The main course was a richly sauced pork casserole with crushed potatoes. In case you are wondering, crushed potatoes are a bit like casually mashed potato with attitude, and pars-ley. The vegetarian option was similarly richly sauced but with aubergines. So good I forgot to take a photograph. And, of course, seconds were served. The dessert was a home-made chocolate and pear torte, served with ice-cream. The meal was finished off with a cup of coffee. All very enjoyable.

We stayed chatting for quite a while, exhibiting precious little social distancing, quite unaware that our social habits were about to be changed fundamentally.
411,90 euros were raised for the charity on this occasion.

Curry Lunch at Les Unelles – 24 January

Places were quickly filled for this popular event, with a good turnout on the day, despite the freezing temperatures.
Members were greeted by the enticing smell of curry as we approached Les Unelles and we were further welcomed with a glass of Kir Normande on entering the vaulted basement. There was plenty of time to chat and catch up with each other before taking our seats for the much-anticipated curry lunch.

The lunch was served by a pop-up restaurant company. This is a concept, which was new to many of us, whereby a host (in this case the Association) provides a venue and the pop-up chef then takes the strain out of entertaining by cooking the food on site, providing the ingredients, table settings and even doing the washing up afterwards! It seems to be a perfect solution for group meals such as this. There was an impressive three course menu – Bhajis to start, fol-lowed by meat and vegetable curries with accompaniments, finishing with a choice of sorbets for dessert, followed by tea or coffee. It’s difficult to cater for all tastes when serving food such as curry. The chef cleverly got around the po-tential issues by providing an explanatory label for each dish and making the dishes mild to medium hot, providing addi-tional condiments and spices for those who prefer a hotter curry. There was ample food – no one left the table hungry!

As always at an Anglophone event, the conversation flowed and an enjoyable time was had by all. Special thanks must go to those members who helped out, serving so many of us smoothly and with great charm.