Our epic visit to our cousins in France held another highlight apart from the kayaking on last week’s Country Kids. We had arrived in time for the local village Fête (pronounced fet). I’m not sure I agree with the whole thing but It was an experience and as house guests we felt it only right to join in their fun and see things as locals. It has much in common with the English fate or carnival season in that it travels from village to village but is far less gentile. The main event is bull racing through the streets which is followed by a fairground with plenty of food and drink.
Alistair found himself in poll position up a giant tree, (I don’t call them Country Kids for nothing!) while the rest of us jostled for a front view near the makeshift railings. I had only taken my compact camera and found it very hard to capture the speed of the chase, it was all rather thrilling, a little scary and I felt very sorry for the bulls and the horses in the evening heat. However I was assured they return to their green pastures after an evening of torment!
A red flare in the street was our warning that they were coming though. The railings were spaced such that we could squeeze through and I spent much time dragging the kids back whenever the flare appeared. To this day I’m not clear if the flares were to warn us or excite the bull!
I barely had time to assemble the children before the stampede of horses, shouting French men and an over excited or possibly angry and terrified bull came charging through with more village men in hot pursuit. Apparently the aim was to halt the bull and bring him down in front of us, which they managed a couple of times. It was a frenzied whirl of hooves and feet. An experience I will never forget, the kids too!
As a loud horn signified the end we followed the crowds led by our cousins to the fair ground.
My children have hardly even been to a fairground and were captivated. I must say the knives they won were a bit of a surprise on the shooting range; French health and safety clearly has a very different rule book to the UK where a cuddly toy might be more common place!
As the light dropped the side stalls gave way to the big rides. The children had the time of their lives; I had the best time watching their excited faces, you wouldn’t catch me on the giant ride for anything, yet they all staggered off beaming with excitement all shouting over one another with how “epic” and “awesome” it was; certainly an evening to thrill.
If you have been outdoors enjoying the fresh air with the family please come and link up. From the park to the woods, weather your activity is play, craft or learning for pure fun I’d love you to join in. Country Kids is all about getting the most from the outdoors, having fun and leaving the sofa and screens indoors. Do take a look at some of the other posts here as there are always some lovely ideas to inspire your next adventure.
A few of my favourites from last week:
Mixed bag of All sorts at Coombe Mill Seeing Coombe Mill for a day and making the most of what we offer
Mama Geek at Coombe Mill A return trip to Coombe Mill for Zoe and Family
Mummy Pink Wellies Bringing History to life on a great day out packed with learning and fun
Mummy and her boys at a stunning castle in Wales
This morning on the feed run we had just entered sally’s pen. We were going to see sally’s piglets. I walked in so that I could see the piglets squeezing my way between the guests who were all keen to see them.
I was just about to pick up my favourite piglet when I saw a big gash on the leg so I alerted Farmer Kym who was in charge this morning “Kym, Kym my favourite pig has A gash” so she said “Oh okay bring him out and I will give him to your Dad!” Kym took the poor piglet to Dad who put it in a cat carrier and off to the vets they flew!
Apparently the piglet needed a general anaesthetic and stitches. The vet was worried about infections and the piglet not making it through the procedure at just 36 hours old; to make things worse he is the smallest piglet which is why he is my favourite.
Whilst this was all happening I felt a little bit sorry for the poor piglet. Unfortunately we were going to the dentist when the pig needed to come back so we sent Farmer Kym off to retrieve him. I gave her my camera to take some pictures as I couldn’t be there. When I was at the dentist I was worrying about the piglet but at least it took my mind of the dentist!
When I came back Mum and I had a look at the pictures and went to see the piglet. Each time we went there we raced but mum would all ways get a head start as I was on my bike and we all ways went a different route to each other of course I won both times. It turns out the vet had put a special silver spray on her back .I think the piglet was happy to walk on grass again. The little piglet looked so very grateful to see her mummy and Sally looked happy to see her piglet too.
I think that every single piggy is so cute but especially the smallest one (The one which had a little injury.) It looks like some of the other piglets felt sorry for their missing sibling and they kissed him to welcome him home!
Spot the one with silver spay (The poorly one!)
Watching them suckle this evening, poorly pig seems to be struggling to get his fair share. I do hope he manages to worm his way in and drink enough to make him big and strong.
You came to us as a teenager. We loved you here on the farm from the very first day even though you were nervous of us. We knew nothing of your background, or who your boyfriend was. The farm you came from was clueless too. I’m quite sure you had no idea that you were pregnant or what that meant.
Each day we watched your discomfort in the summer heat. I felt for you as your tummy swelled and longed to explain to you what was happening to your body and to comfort you as any mother would. You are really still only a child yourself.
We tried to make you welcome. Farmer Nick toiled away to make you a comfy new home where the shelter would be warm and cosy for your new piglets, yet you had no idea anyone was looking out for you.
Yesterday I moved you to your new luxury pad and you seemed to enjoy investigating in there. Yet you hardly had a minute to enjoy it before the unexpected pain set in. How frightened you must have felt not knowing what was happening to you. I was off enjoying an evening bike ride, yet Guy just back from running the train and still in his driver’s uniform heard your moan. He ran over to see if you were alright and saw the first baby be born; what a shock that must have been for you. Guy ran home to grab his i pod and the rest of the family.
There is no privacy in this world; we all crowded round you to watch this magical time. Guy’s unsteady hand caught the piglets on video and I rushed over to join in the excitement abandoning my bike on the grass beside you.
Tonight dear Sally we leave you in peace in your new home to adjust to life as a young Mummy. I hope so much you will take to your new brood and love them with all your heart as they really are yours. If only you knew how much support is out there for you and how we all want you to thrive.
Good Night Sally and sweet dreams piglets x