I dedicate this blog post to the dear memory of my lovable Gavroche, who was immensely smart, anything but wild (he seemed to imagine himself as a male donkey), and whom I miss greatly.
It's probably your smell, Gavroche, that I miss most, because it defined you so beautifully. You were that smell. That smell was you. Who else on Earth would have accepted it, let alone wanted that terrible but wonderful smell? I trust that readers of Antipodes will not be tempted to misunderstand vulgarly my deep sentiments and words when I say that you taught me so much about sexuality, dear Gavroche, in that I soon concluded that it had been terribly cruel of me to bring you to Gamone without also inviting along a female companion of your species. But neighbors warned me that you were such a prolific little sex machine that Gamone would soon be peopled by a horde of your offspring… and I didn't have the courage to face such a demographic challenge (which may or may not have been realistic). So I condemned you to enduring a solitary frustrated existence… which never seemed to attenuate your natural behavior of masturbating grotesquely (sperm jets directed into your own face) and attempting vainly to screw sheep, donkeys and even Sophia. Retrospectively, I'm sure that I should have tried to organize for you a more decent sex life, but I still don't know how. Frankly, Gavroche, at times, your libido astounded and almost frightened me. You were the Primeval Prick.
Today, dear Gavroche, you are dust… but this doesn't stop me from admiring and loving you. I would even say that your dustiness makes me admire and love you more than ever… because I see you as an eternal cosmic goat. The stars above Gamone trace the cosmological form of a galaxy named Gavroche. And I worship you, dear goat.
Today, though, I wish to talk of other goats: your remote cousins. More precisely, specimens of Capra ibex. Here's a fabulous photo of a Slovenian female specimen:
And here's a male—bouquetin in French—in the Vercors:
I'm told that, in the vicinity of Gamone, there's a colony of a few dozen specimens of this ancient animal. Apparently, they live on the summits of the two mountains that I spoke of in a recent blog post: the Baret and the Trois Châteaux.
I took this photo from a spot on the famous chemin du Vert (green path) that runs along the crest above my house at Gamone. This is the ancient public path that the mayor of Choranche is talking about privatizing. In remembrance of Gavroche and his archaic Ibex cousins, I shall do everything that's imaginable (which probably won't amount to much, because everybody agrees with this thinking) to maintain this path as a part of our cultural heritage, since it would appear to be an ideal itinerary for spying upon our wild goats. I must admit that I haven't yet armed myself with a pair of powerful binoculars and set out to investigate this lovely idea, just above my head.
Meanwhile, Gavroche, dear goat of Gamone: Requiescat in pace.