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France, Music & The Elvis Story

Our love affair with France began back in 1991...
 We decided to head off in our little campervan on a journey following the sun.
Sal was 3 years old & Rose had just turned 1.
We didn't have a plan, we'd sold pretty much everything we owned & the rest was put into Bebe's spare room...

We had a fantastic adventure - travelling slowly through France, over the Alps, into Switzerland & Italy, then eventually back into France - where we settled for 3 months on the south coast, in a small village called Cavaliere. 
We rented a cheap caravan on a little campsite & I found a job as a housekeeper in the next village. While I worked, Sime & the girls spent their days on the beach & I joined them when I was finished.
Back then, French families would have the whole of August as a holiday & every evening on the campsite during that month - families would get their tablecloths out & eat outside on huge tables, the food was abundant & the wine flowed. Then later on, the accordions would come out & we enjoyed many hours listening to wonderful traditional French music... 
After 3 months, we made probably the biggest mistake of our lives - we left to go grape picking in Chablis, but found it was just too cold to carry on in the camper with the girls, so we ended up coming back to the UK & had several other trips abroad before eventually moving in with my mum. If we had stayed in Cavaliere, I had been offered a permanent job in the main hotel as chambermaid. Life would have been very different...

Since then, we have had lots of holidays in France & even another long term stay in Brittany a few years ago. We toyed a few times with the idea of revisiting Cavaliere & decided to do it 4 years ago. We really wanted to take Hugo & show him all the places & things we had shared with the girls. We stayed near Cannes, so we could go along to the film festival & spent time visiting Cavaliere & the surrounding area. We were quite worried that it might have changed, but were pleasantly surprised... It had hardly changed at all!

About 4 years ago, we spotted an advert in the Cornish Guardian for a French evening in a village on the other side of St Austell. Sime phoned up & spoke to an old guy who was very enthusiastic about the event. He promised to go & we never did. Since then, the old guy has rang us every year to say it's on again & we just haven't got there - until this year...

It was a great night & was really a French/Cornish night, but was good fun.
We enjoyed some sing-a-long Cornish songs & there were pasties & yeast buns for those who wanted.
Everyone was very friendly, but they were very disappointed that Sime hadn't taken his guitar, so he promised he would next year...

Then the French music kicked in & we loved it...

Stan & Garry are father & son - they were amazing!
Stan is the chap who's rang us every year...

They are all very talented guys!

Then Saturday, we went off to Hayle for the launch of The Dolphins Fly new single.

Soundcheck...

It was a great night...

And lots of folks were dancing...

But the hightlight of the night for me was a rather drunk bloke who came over to chat just before we left.
He took ages telling us how much he loves karaoke & that he works in St Ives. He then went on to tell us that the night before, he took the train to Camborne to go to a fancy dress shop. He found exactly what he wanted & made his way to Hayle. He then went into detail about the white outfit he'd picked up, the belt with a huge buckle, the black wig with sideburns & the medalion...
Yes, he turned up at the karaoke night as Elvis & what came next in his story? The proof that he had "nailed" Elvis' voice... At 1am on the pub car park, in the middle of Hayle - there we were listening to a drunken man who believed he could sing like Elvis... It was dreadful, but hilarious!

I think he could be the Dolphins new support act...

The last 2 days we have been very lazy - although tonight we've made some nettle beer!
It's been a beautiful day, so we took our basket & walked down the lane to collect nettles & goosegrass...
But that's for another post!


Hope it's nice weather where you are...

Kay & Sime
xx

Comments

just Gai said…
It's interesting to ponder over what might have been. However you always sound reasonably content with your lot, which is a good thing.
Jane and Chris said…
My Mum's name is Bebe.....small world, eh?
Jane x
Mrs Thrifty said…
What an interesting life you have led. Funny how we make those decisions which are life-defining and who knows why. I teach French and fell in love with the country during my year in Aix-en-Provence. I get back as often as I can and last year went to the Dordogne which was gorgeous. The accordian music is lovely - shame about all the talking lol xx
The Smiths said…
Thanks Gai - we just make the most of everything, but we sometimes wonder where we'd be now if we had stayed in France...

Kay :)
The Smiths said…
Hi Jane - Sime's mum is Bebe, though it's a nickname - but everyone knows her as that!

Kay :)
The Smiths said…
Hi Mrs Thrifty - The only part of France we've not visited is the west coast, but we love the Dordogne. Our favourite area is the Auvergne...

Kay :)
Catherine said…
Haha ~ you two can find fun anywhere! Even in a parking lot. It sounds like Elvis is alive and doing well. If not just a bit tipsy. LOL! ;)

xo Catherine
The Smiths said…
Thanks Catherine - I think we just attract weirdos really!

Kay :)

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