Art, cycling, history, and a new biking buddy. Not bad for a Monday afternoon.
Before she left, my host Sue suggested I meet Mimi. “She’s a writer and blogger, she rides a bicycle, and she’s from North America, like us!” Mimi used to live in California, but she and her husband now stay here in the village of Lauzun.
The forecast for Monday was mild and sunny so on a whim, I phoned Mimi to ask if she felt like a pedal to the village of Serignac-Reboudou, 8 kilometres away.
Mimi’s lived in Lauzun for four years and she shares her enthusiasm for the region in a blog called Lot of Livin’. She told me she tries to shine a light on events in different villages in the Lot-et-Garonne region of France. Mimi also told me that the blog’s parent site, AngloInfo.com, is a global resource for Anglos seeking nuts-and-bolts information about building a new life in another country.
As we approached the village, I was able to take a close look at a persimmon tree. These trees are bare except for their huge burdens of bright, orange fruit. This one reminded me of a Charlie Brown Christmas tree.
At the village’s centre, we discovered a newly-painted mural. A neighbour told us it was done by local artists, and portrayed various aspects of the local culture: the agriculture, farming, church.
Both of us were quite taken by the beautiful cow.
I was intrigued by the vertically-mounted sun dial, and promised myself I’d ask someone about how to read one.
Around the corner, a new sculpture and posters mention the Maison Familiale et Rurale (MFR).
I’d seen signs for Maison Familiale et Rurale and had translated them to mean they were some kind of gîte, or country guest house. I asked Mimi about it and she shook her head and told me that in fact this village of Serignac-Peboudou was the birthplace of a movement to educate rural youth on farming as a profession. According to the Wikipedia.com page (translated from French),
…MFR is an establishment of status of associations that has the objective of training and education for youth and adults, as well as their social integration and professional…
We finished taking photos and rolled out of Serignac-Peboudou, through twisting forests (where Mimi told me she once saw a wild boar), and back into Lauzun in time for the weekly English-French conversation club meeting at the Floc ‘n’ Tea cafe.
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