Legends from our own lunchtimes

Sunday, August 19, 2012


For the second time this summer a heatwave is sweeping Europe.  Once again the city is trying to escape the heat and discovering that it cannot hide.  Shade is at a premium, if it could be bottled street vendors would be on every corner selling it at outrageous prices.

In Nancy at the moment, quiet extraordinarily there are six boats with crews which speak with accents broadly like ours, and while many from other lands equate thirty-seven degrees with Australia, every one of us equated the weather with "barbecue" under the trees of the harbour promenade.   Marvellously there are children running among us as well, a thousand of them, or was it four, and a couple of Danes who see themselves as related because after all their future King has Antipodean blood in his veins, and who share their dogs without favour.

So we sit in the shade of our communal trees, two dozen of us variously sharing watermelon or talking bloke stuff and propellor sizes, or girl stuff and grandchildren or chasing dogs to the smell of snags on charcoal and popping drink cans and the squeals of children under a hose.

It's like a great big family picnic on boxing day but there's no grass for cricket, and as always there is a lot of catching up to be done, although in this community if anyone stopped to think about it, no one has known each other for more than two days, but no one does, and the party continues well into the night.

Tomorrow our group will begin to disperse, by Wednesday we will be the last remaining in port, but we will all remember that afternoon in Nancy when the thermometer hit thirty-seven, and half of Australia turned up for the barbecue.

1 comment

cara said...

sounds idyllic!

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