Saturday, July 28, 2007

An Eventful Evening

Last night was the fourth of the Marche Nocturne Leran events we have attended. It was unusual in several respects. First, it had a parade of not quite antique tractors followed by vintage cars. We were aware that it was going to happen but surprised a little when it did. The tractors came idling down Cours St. Jacques and disappeared around the corner. Not having an agricultural background, all I can tell you was that they were indeed tractors, and small by today's standards. Then came the vintage autos, and Nancy was up and trying to pull out her camera and get few shots of them before they too were gone. I was surprised to see a really nice Ford flatbed and this Chevy pickup pictured here. The advance billing said we would see Citroen 2 CV automobiles, and indeed there were several, but the other "voitures et camionettes" were a surprise. I cheered patriotically as the American pickups came by. We wondered if in future years we can enter Smokey in the parade. The last "voiture" pictured is a 2 CV which must have been manufactured in the 60's or 70's and it has two local kids duded up in garments that were supposed to suggest the era, beads, flowers in the hair. Her t-shirt said (I think), "Faites l'amour, pas de guerre" which as we all know means "Make love, not war". (Or, if my French is incorrect, it may mean "Love making prohibited during war"....who knows?)

And secondly, our enjoyment of the Marche was disturbed by the "Spectacular repetition" also taking place that evening. Nancy and I reluctantly left the festivities and made our way over to the grounds of the Chateau promptly at 8:00. A few folks were already there, but the sound wagon, still on only two wheels, hadn't arrived, nor had the director or the "boss lady", as Nancy calls her. She had the key to the chateau grounds, so we all waited for 20 minutes for the essentials to arrive. They couldn't get the sound system going, no electricity or something. We waited around, the locals chatting to each other and Nancy and I rather impatient with the delay.

Finally, about 8:40 we began the dance number. I refused to participate (You know how I feel about dancing.....monks don't dance) due to my fragile knee. They did an abbreviated dance number and were beginning the second repetition, when one little dancing peasant took a bad fall. The friendly 80 year old French lady pictured in our post, "Monks and Peasants" was down and in obvious pain. Her leg was twitching and her face was contorted with pain. At first I think we all assumed it was her heart. But as we learned a little later, it was her leg. Nancy and I don't know the extent of the injury as of right now, but it was perhaps a broken leg or dislocated knee. We think she had knee or hip replacement surgery. The Pompiers (firemen) eventually came and got her leg stabilized with a splint, put her on a stretcher and hauled her off to the hospital.

It was close to dark, so another repetition of the dance number was completed and the kindly yet bumbling director decided to cancel the rest of the clusterfuck. Nancy and I went back to the Marche Nocturne Leran for another hour.


leslie said...

Pauvre madame, who broke her hip or knee, just goes to show you that you should NOT dance, you will get hurt. I really want a double CV, there are a couple on the island and I remember Mr. Burkey, in highschool, describing his honeymoon in France in a rented 2CV, the windows bent in half and stick up on suction cups, there were no shocks, he said the seats were suspended on big rubber bands and his bottom hit the ground whenever he went over a ibg bump. I don't think they have changed much. Nice mix of work and play. Leslie

Anonymous said...

You sure do get yourselves right into the "center of the social whirl"...Luke thinks you are becoming quite famous as those "Americans sauvages et fous"!

I hope the lady with leg injury gets back to normal as soon as possible.

Is this wonderful historical pageant going to be videotaped? A copy of that tape would make such a good souvenir of your "French life"! Oo-la-la!