A ‘Grand’ day out…. .

On Saturday Ralph and Sue took us to see some of the local goings on in the region starting at 11.00am with the grand opening of ‘La Moulin à vent du Chêne’.

 

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Le Moulin a vent du Chene.

The windmill dating back to the 17th Century has taken three years to restore with the help of donations from public funds and private individuals.

 

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Grand opening of the restored windmill.

It will now be used as an educational facility and will also be open to the public.  The grand opening attracted a fairly large number of people and it was really good to see the local people out in force supporting their heritage.

 

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In full sail.

We were able to see the windmill in action producing three different types of flour.  Well that’s what I think he was trying to tell me in French!

 

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Three different types of flour being collected.

Of course with anything done by the French everyone had an aperitif of Rosé to celebrate in style!

 

 

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Millstone above our heads.

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After the windmill we went to ‘Le Nombril du Monde’ at Pougne-Herisson.  Roughly translated it means ‘Navel of the World’.

 

 

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The entrance to ‘Le nombril du monde’ garden.

It’s a garden now open to the public which was created by the village blacksmith.   I can honestly say it was one of the most bizarre, surreal but interesting and enjoyable places we have been to in a long time.

 

 

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Mmm, not sure what this is meant to represent?

On the day we visited I couldn’t really get my head around what it was about and having scanned the internet since then I’m not sure I’m any the wiser now!

 

 

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This was something to do with a Sputnik.

Google translate is all very well but it gives a direct translation of what is written which makes the text even more confusing I think, or maybe that’s just me!

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Erm, ??

All I have gleaned is that ‘Le Nombril du Monde’ is a garden that was created by …. Jarry, who was , at one time, the village blacksmith and compulsive inventor who died in 1976.

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This was the ‘arbre mort’ – the dead tree.

He created the garden using recycled materials and a wacky imagination.  Hopefully the pictures might make sense more than I can but I doubt it.

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These poles had red lines on them (we think) depicting the heights of different characters in fairtales.
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I think I was number 19 – ‘Le chat Botte (non botte) – whatever that means!

Going round the garden I didn’t quite understand what it was getting at and I still don’t!

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The seven sons of the giant??

It was free to wander round though and we wiled away a happy hour there!

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Woodhenge!

The garden is also used for story telling, poetry, theatre, umm, err, mmm and other stuff!

P1060361.JPGThey even have a Biennial Navel Festival! I think we’ll probably give that one a miss though!  

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Anyone care to translate?

If you’re interested (highly unlikely) and want to find out more about it for yourself, Google it and get back to me with what you think it all means! 

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They could use these on Top Gear – there was the top of a car above it for a gazebo effect!

The finale to our day out on Saturday was the Grande Prix Historique de Bressuire. 

P1060389.JPGThis was a brilliant evening’s entertainment….. and free!  The Grand Prix Historique de Bressuire re-enacts the original Grand Prix race which was held in the small town of Bressuire in the early 1950’s.

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And they’re off.

Hundreds of vintage cars descend on the town for two days of demonstrations and racing around the town’s tight streets.

P1060392.JPGThe racing goes on well into late evening with the last race finishing at 11.30pm.  The pictures hopefully give a flavour of what it was like but unfortunately I can’t upload any video footage to the blog.

WARNING:  What follows are many pictures of old cars – if you are not the least bit interested in cars then I suggest you look away now!! And don’t ask me to name the types of cars as I haven’t a clue!

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Nice ‘H’ van now an ice cream van.

So, a jolly good time was had by all on our Grand day out which all had a Wallace and Gromit kind of feel to it!  Cracking!!

 

 

 

 

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bonvanageblog

We are Jane and Tim and we recently gave up our jobs and rented out our house to persue a life of travel across Europe in our motorhome called Ollie.

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