Yesterday was our annual visit to the agricultural fair at Espezel. Yes, it rained, but no, we didn’t mind.
In fact, it rained early when we were walking Shmoo, but had stopped by the time we left for the fair. Miraculously, it didn’t rain while we were there and started to rain again while we were driving home. Of course, the only benefit to not having rain right at the minute we were there was that we, personally, didn’t get wet. The ground, however, was a mud pit everywhere outside of the main village. That meant that all the livestock exhibits were a challenge, since I am not known for my grace even during fine weather. I did manage to get through without falling on my butt though, so that was a plus.
I swear that there there were even more booths this year than last. You really wouldn’t think it possible that more people could set up. We didn’t get to every single exhibitor, mostly because after a while you can’t take in anymore information. As it is, we had trouble deciding where we should buy what. Finally, we tried not to make too many purchases at any one booth, preferring to buy from as many different people as possible. I think we wound up not going crazy and didn’t buy anything that we wouldn’t normally eat.
We bought several kinds of cheese (cow and goat) some dried sausage of different types, fresh duck sausage to broil or grill, aligot, that magical concoction of mashed potatoes and melted cheese that is cooked in huge cauldrons and stirred with a wooden spoon, a goat and tomato fougasse (kind of like a sauceless pizza), an apple fougasse (like a free-form apple tart), a huge beignet that I shouldn’t have eaten because that’s just too much fried dough, wine, vinegar and a can of paté. Between that and our purchases at the apple festival last weekend, we really don’t need to shop for a while.
My only negative came when I bought a bottle of wine for Mom and a bottle of Banyuls vinegar for me. I had wanted a 500 ml bottle of vinegar and paid for that, but discovered that the guy had slipped a 250 ml bottle to me instead. I thought the bottle he put in the bag looked small, and I should have gone with my instinct and said something. Still, I wasn’t about to drive back for that, so live and learn in the future I guess.
We didn’t stay to watch any of the demonstrations of herding, because we could tell that the weather was going to get worse. However I did see a lot of beautiful Border Collies wandering around and that made me sad a little because I really was missing Maggie. Shmoo gave me lots of cuddles when we got home though, so that helped some. God forbid I should see a BC for adoption in a weak moment, because I will probably do it!
As always, the drive up to Espezel is stunning. Even in the rain there are wonderful sites to see. Yesterday, the clouds were hanging on the hills and everything looked magical under dramatic skies. I don’t think I could pick a place in the world that I would rather live or anything I would rather do than wander a fair like Espezel.
Ciao for now.