A Bustling Bar

Morning sky, Sigoules 1.13

After lunch yesterday I watched ‘The Special Relationship’, scriptwriter Peter Morgan’s imagined version of the personal friendship between Tony Blair and Bill Clinton.  It was fascinating fiction blended with factual events during a dramatic period of our history.  The performances of Michael Sheen, now quite adept at playing the former British Prime Minister, and Dennis Quaid as his American counterpart were excellent; as were those of Hope Davis and Helen McCrory as the two wives.

Blue sky vying with sombre clouds, peeping over the garden wall this morning never quite won the battle today, but it was pleasant enough.

After a morning’s reading, I lunched at a heaving Code Bar.  So busy was it, especially for a winter’s weekday, that I told David he should be very proud.  He was.  When there is no general hubbub in such an establishment, even if quieter than today, I am easily distracted by music or individual conversations.  Not so today.  The background noise was a medley of a pop group, volume turned right down, performing on the wide screen television; the hum of voices speaking at such a rate that I couldn’t understand a word; the clattering of cutlery and crockery; and the tinkling of the till.  This merges into a rhythmic sound like a gentle wind or a trickling stream which does not disturb rambling thoughts.  Frederick, who does the bulk of the waiting while David tends the bar, dashed around like a jackrabbit.  Here I use a phrase coined from something I’ve never seen, but if I did see one I am sure it would look just like my nippy little French friend.  Eyes darting hither and thither, taking in the requirements of each diner; weaving about among the tables and customers, balancing platefuls on everything he had to balance them on; shaking hands with every new entrant, he is a sight to behold.  He tells me he loves it.  Even David had to leave the bar counter to deliver a few full, or collect a few empty, plates.  On one occasion he managed to greet a woman with the usual French kiss on each cheek, whilst clutching a plate of mixed meats in each hand.  This amazing performance lasts about an hour, after which it all slows down a bit.

The meal consisted of Max’s original onion soup; a plate of cold meats with a marvellous mustard-flavoured mayonnaise nestling in a lettuce leaf; a luscious lasagna the like of which I have never tasted before; and the previously described apple flan.  I just about managed to squeeze in the usual fresh, crisp, bread and some water to go with it.

Eymet road, Sigoules 1.13 (2)This afternoon I walked the La Briaude loop. Eymet road, Sigoules 1.13 It was very cold, with surprising glimpses of warmth in moments touched by the occasional shaft of direct sun.

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