Nuts in May by Jan Needle
|Calling the emergency service, English style. Note the mobile and stand-by bicycle|
A year ago, I woke up in France to the appalling news that we (the people’s will!) had decided to quit the EU. This year, a few days ago now, I woke in France to the delightful news that May and all her little nuts had backed the wrong hearse (oops; horse), but again it was the people’s will.
What is it about democracy? Few of us can understand it fully, but few of us can misunderstand it as spectacularly as them what makes their living by it. Rule one – don’t pretend it’s the people’s will, even if they endorse that which you want them to. Treeza can hardly deny her bloody nose was NOT the people’s will, can she?
And anyway, she’s vicar’s daughter, and therefore has INTEGRITY (discuss). If she tells me she called a snap election to make Britain strong and stable, what can I do but believe her?
What does she do next? Revive Govey – ‘the demented prune’ – and a ragbag of other halfwits. And team up with a Northern Irish party that still firmly believes the Pope’s the Antichrist (whatever one of them might be). Let’s revive the Protestant marches. That’ll show them Catholics. And restart the Troubles? Ah well, you can’t have everything, can you?
I’m a norfer, me. But I promise you, I couldn’t’ve made this up.
Enough of all this moaning, though. Here’s the good news. Two days into the holiday, returning to our gite almost literally in the middle of nowhere (not even on the satnav!) our gearbox (boite a vitesses) blew up. Elle etait morte, as we told the hire firm at Toulouse airport.
Fortunately they were persuadable, despite the problems of technical explanations, even in one’s own lingo, and even more fortunately the boite had rendered itself morte close enough to the gite for us to limp back there in bottom.
A couple of dozen hours later, therefore, a snazzy tow truck turned up (after half a dozen anguished phone calls trying to expliquer the inexpliquable directions to the unfortunate driver) and hoicked it off to a garage for distressed Opels.
Come this morning, and I rang the hire firm, who sent a taxi to take us to Aldi (no, ALBI, sorry) to pick up another voiture.
Terrific, because that’s where we would have driven this morning, had our original voiture not blown up. (Who said God’s dead? Nietzsche, I believe; he was clearly wrong), so off we hopped. What would the new one be? How long would the new boite a vitesses hold out?
More later, sensation seekers. If the taxi driver ever finds us…
She did. And we picked up a brand new Renault, with 68 km on the clock. Then off to the SuperU to get some English cheese. Or some English beer. Or some of the other things the Continentals are so desperate to get their hands on they’ll give us any deal we care to offer them.
|Boite a vitesses okay?|
No such cheese, no such beer, probably no such deal. We still get the BBC News Channel (although only from Scotland, bizarrely) so we can still console ourselves with Treeza’s suffering face, and vomit at the sight of Mr Sarah Vine prancing up to the door of Number Ten looking more demented than ever.
Talking of suffering, I’m having a terrible moral struggle with myself over that. The vile arrogance with which she called the election makes it hard to pity her, very hard, now it’s all gone mamelles up (pardon, mes amis Francais).
But she does look so genuinely defeated. Courage, mon brave. Or as your new ‘allies’ might put it, No Surrender!
We wonder what’ll happen when we come to France next year. If we’re still allowed…
But I think we should also celebrate democracy - there are too many countries where it isn't safe to talk openly about differences and difficulties. It's a messy business and throws us into situations like this. But even this is better than totalitarianism.
But I do envy you your stay in that part of France. Back in the days when we had human beings as 'leaders', We spent a year in the Lot region and loved every minute of it.
As for your incipient sympathy for the Maybot, it would be better spent on a completely different but more worthy machine – i. e. la pauvre boîte à vitesses que vous avez bougrée up.