Friday, 1 November 2013

Boue !

Anyone who has spent any time in rural France will have encountered the triangular temporary roadside warning signs saying 'Boue !', especially at this time of year. The feast of Toussaints (today) is notorious for being wet, and this photo, taken on this day last year, showing the entrance to the laneway past our orchard, demonstrates the weather conditions perfectly. It was in fact raining when I took the picture and the track has been turned into a rutted muddy slippery slide by farm machinery and nearby ditch clearing work. Boue means 'mud', by the way, or often, more euphemistically, 'deposit' (think dairy cows being herded across the road). Boue is, of course, pronounced 'boo!'
Curry Night: Last night we went to Tim and Gaynor's curry night. This event is one that the local British expats look forward to eagerly -- real curry! One of the guests said to me that she had boasted to the school mums about where she was off to after the Halloween trick or treating and she had to repeat it 3 times there was such lack of comprehension and incredulity amongst even quite trendy young French mums. Halloween has been adopted by the French, but sadly, not proper curry. Tim and Gaynor put an enormous amount of effort into the evening's entertainment, bringing authentic British Asian curry ingredients and serving up samosas and bharjees with relishes before half a dozen different main dishes with poppadums and most importantly, naan bread, which you just can't get here. The guests supplied an equally wide variety of desserts (not Indian, it has to be said). Everyone enjoyed the annual get together and we all really appreciate Tim and Gaynor's willingness to host it. Hopefully, we have converted a couple of Belgians to curry, even if the French remain dubious.


  1. Boue is not the same thing as bouse de vache...

  2. Ken: no,not exactly I suppose, but they put the signs up near dairy farms where the cattle cross the road, and when the farmer has left a mess on the road after carting muck.

  3. Or if they are too lazy to do anything about the state of their place....
    I'm thinking in particular about "Newcastle"...
    the first farm on the link road from us to Chaumussay...
    they've had a boue sign up there ever since we bought the house ten years ago....
    they are temporary ones, alright....
    but fixed forever to wooden supports!!

    Great curry last night... and your Cracked Toe cake was very tasty!!

  4. We enjoyed the evening too. Our aim for next year should be to meet, invite and 'educate' more local French people about the delights of curry. In the meantime I shall try to extend my repertoire. The desserts were fantastic.

  5. Boue-tiful shot. We only had a handful of trick-or-treaters in Amboise. We're actually surprised we had any. I guess some things are best untranslated / untransported.

  6. Is this the entrance I remember from an earlier post where the council did some repair work...or is it another load of old bouse....

  7. Stuart: Ha ha. Rosemary has written a most informative post on why Halloween has a certain following in France.

    Fly: this photo is from 12 months ago, before they did the work.

  8. Susan, bouse is cow manure (cow patties, cow pies) where boue is just mud, not necessarily containing any déjections bovines.

    Gaynor, if you tell French people that a curry is basically a tajine, they'll get it immediately. The tajine is a Moroccan curry, and France has a long history of cultural relations with Morocco.