Showing posts with label Madeleine. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Madeleine. Show all posts

Friday, August 31, 2012

Unusual evening photo

Over a week ago, at around 7 o'clock on the evening of 22 August 2012, I took this photo of the Bourne valley, looking eastwards:

[Click to enlarge]

At first sight, it looks as if the Sun were rising. But, at that time of the day, the Sun was actually setting in the west: that's to say, in the opposite direction, behind the photographer's back, beyond the slopes behind Gamone, on the low horizon beyond Pont-en-Royans. So, what's the origin of that pink hue in the clouds above the cliffs of Chalimont? Unfortunately, I didn't pursue that investigation on the evening in question. (My attention was probably attracted by the TV news. Besides, I didn't even know yet whether my Nikon had recorded an interesting image.) I would imagine, though, that the clouds were reflecting light from a first-quarter Moon, low in the sky behind the Cournouze.

I now recall that, a couple of days later on, I had received a most unusual phone call from my neighbor Madeleine, at around 11 o'clock in the evening. She had been woken up by the barking of her dog. Looking outside behind her house, she had the impression that there was a glow in the air, like the light from a halted automobile. She asked me whether there was a full Moon that evening, and I said no. To remove her fears that there might be an intruder in the vicinity, I actually jumped into my car and did a rapid trip down to Madeleine's house and back.

When I phoned back to say that everything was pitch black and calm around her house, Madeleine told me she was sure she had heard voices at the same time that she noticed the glow. I explained to her that I had noticed lately that voices from her nephew's house can travel down along Gamone Creek in a remarkably clear fashion. On that very day, I had been cutting weeds, well below my house, when I was convinced that I was hearing the voices of people who had just stopped at Gamone. When I scrambled back up to the house, I realized that it was simply Jackie chatting with his donkeys, a hundred meters up the road.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Madeleine and the dogs

Whenever my neighbor Madeleine drops in, it's always a joyous encounter, not only for me, but for our dogs.

My Fitzroy leads a barking Briska in mad pursuits back and forth in front of the house, until they're both totally exhausted. As for Sophia, watching from the sidelines, she has always reacted with joy to the presence of Madeleine. Maybe Sophia recalls the time when Madeleine would arrive at Gamone with edible goodies in plastic bags. In general, I've always felt that Sophia appreciates the gentle caresses of women, so different to my rough hands searching through her fur for ticks. I've tried to tell Sophia that it takes all kinds of people to make a world.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Income tax

September 14: the eve of the final date for a payment of income tax. Even my magnificent dog (adjectives fail me when I evoke Sophia) sensed that there was urgency in the air. In fact, Sophia senses everything in my existence. So, I invited her to jump into the car and accompany me down to the post office at Pont-en-Royans. Taxes are less painful when you pay them with your dog.

On the way back, we were halted by my neighbor Madeleine, who had been waiting in the middle of the road to give me a plate of figs:

She suggested I might make jam. I replied that her figs would surely be devoured within a few days, before my thinking about jam. In her usual unpredictable, totally random but lovely style, Madeleine (by the roadside, alongside my automobile, with Sophia awaiting impatiently our return to Gamone, a hundred meters up the road) started to tell me the history of the silver plate upon which her gift of figs was placed. I'll spare you the complex details about something overflowing, long ago, and eroding the silver plate. But I know already that, because of this fuzzy tale, the figs will taste all that much more delicious.