… since we’ve featured an old car on these pages?
So here’s one that I saw today and you don’t need any introduction to they type of vehicle that this is because you’ve been introduced to its LITTLE BROTHER on several occasions.
And when I say “little brother” I really do mean this because whilst mine that’s in the back of my garage at Montaigut-en-Combraille is one of the smaller lightweight four-cylinder 7CV models, the one that’s here on these pages is the Real McCoy, the big heavyweight 6-cylinder 15CV models, as you can tell by the badge that is proudly displayed on the right-hand mudguard.
In fact we can actually put a date to this one, assuming that it’s all correct.
The boot lid features the shape of the spare wheel. That was phased out in late 1952. But it has straight bumpers instead of the curved “whiskers” type. That type was phased out in early 1952
But the real Real McCoy, the Holy Grail of all Citroen Traction Avants that I know existed at one time and which were never put into production, and I’ve no idea if there are any left, are the model 22s.
22 is of course twice 11 and so you might be expecting something special, and indeed you are right. It’s an experimental model fitted with a V8 engine made of two of the four-cylinder 11 engines. If only I could find one of those I would be in heaven, but let’s be honest – it’s not very likely.
What else that wasn’t going to be very likely is me being up anything like early. With having crashed out so definitively in the afternoon I couldn’t sleep and I was still up working at 04:00 this morning. Being awake and up and about at 11:30 on a Sunday was something of a surprise.
There had been enough time for me to go off on my travels during the night. We were looking after 2 children about 8 or 9, a boy and a girl. They were rather unruly and it was hard to keep control of them. As it was nearly bedtime I took them outside to let them play around for a while. That was the idea – I brought a ball with them. I left them out there for what was going to be 10 minutes but turned out to be longer than that. They must have gone to bed on their own so no-one said anything. The next morning I went to awaken them. They asked “what are you going to make us do today”? I asked why and they replied “if we’re going to play football we’re just going to make a noise”. I replied “in that case I’d put one of you up here and the other one somewhere else and you can make as much noise as you want”. When we went outside they had made a snowman only it was the two of them kneeling down stroking a big snow cat. I thought that it was wonderful. I asked “who made that”. They said that they did and some of the cats helped. So I made the kids kneel down by this sculpture and went to find as many cats as I could so I could give them to the kids to hold so that they would all be in the photo. But trying to round up a herd of cats at any one time is pretty impossible as anyone who has a large number of cats will tell you.
After the meds, much of the day has been spent going through the music and sorting a few things out. And in a spectacular burst of energy I paired the music for the radio programme that I’ll hopefully be doing tomorrow.
And then I went out for my afternoon walk around the headland.
First thing to do while I was out was to go and stick my head over the wall at the end of the car park to see what the score is down on the beach this afternoon.
And while there wasn’t all that much beach to be on because the tide was well in, there were still hordes of people clinging on to the rocks like seabirds, or rather like King Canute trying desperately to turn back the tide. There were even some people looking as if they had been into the water too.
That must have been quite a brave thing to do this afternoon because while it’s summer tomorrow, it was rather like an April day out there right now. The heatwave that we had at the beginning of the week seems to be well and truly gone and that seems to be our lot.
Not that that would ever seem to bother a certain part of our society. The fishermen seem to be always there either on the rocks or in their little boats just offshore. That is, if they aren’t right out at sea in a big trawler or two.
Today we have Jerome K Jerome’s “Three Men In a Boat” out there armed with fishing rods and heaven alone knows what else, but probably not a dog called Montmorency. One of the guys has his rod in the water but as the boat is moving along, it’s going to be very unlikely that he will be tempting any of the local sea bass to come in and take the bait.
Of course, fishing is actually very much like having sex. You get your rod out and you never know what you are going to catch.
I’ll get my coat.
And the fishermen in the boat weren’t the only people out there hoping to catch a bite to eat this afternoon.
There are a couple of birds of prey who loiter around in the air around the edge of the cliffs here at the Pointe du Roc. As well as the lizards and mice and all of the usual kinds of wildlife that inhabit the cliffs, there’s a colony of rabbits and I would imagine that a young baby rabbit would be just the thing to feed a growing family of vultures or whatever they are.
But while he was swooping up and down a few times, I didn’t actually see him catch anything either although I reckon that he would have far more animal cunning than the fishermen.
And so I headed off on my walk along the path on top of the cliffs, in amongst the crowds of people who were also out there for their afternoon stroll, most of whom were not taking a blind bit of notice of the order from the Préfet that masks are compulsory here until 30th June.
But there was something interesting down by the war memorial to the Resistance that I noticed for the first time since I came back. Regular readers of this rubbish will recall that they were flying the German flag down there the other day but this afternoon I noticed that it had gone and in its place is the Union Flag of the United Kingdom.
“Is there a story behind the substitution of the flags?” I asked myself when I saw it. I would have expected the British flag to have been the more likely of the two seeing as we are celebrating the Normandy landings, but the German flag was flown first. So why the change?
While I was pondering over that conundrum I noticed something moving out in the Baie de Mont St Michel and as it looked rather like something a little weird I went to investigate.
It was a yacht that was out there this afternoon and while there wasn’t really anything in the way of wind today, it was careening right over at quite an angle. There must have been quite something of a wind blowing out there to sea to have caused it to go over at that much of an angle. There isn’t the wake of another boat or anything that is causing it.
The little zodiac that looks as if it’s coming over from the Ile de Chausey looks as if it might be having a few yachtsmen dropping in for a coffee if the yacht goes over much more.
But here’s some much more exciting activity going on around the headland in the Baie de Mont St Michel so I wandered off around the path to meet it.
That little speedboat or cabin cruiser with the fishermen in it that we saw earlier is heading back into port at quite a speed, and here it’s about to collide with the wake of one of the Joly France boats that has just left harbour and is heading over to the Ile de Chausey to presumably rescue some holidaymakers from there.
And that’s the older of the two
That’s not quite all of the fun that was going on out there this afternoon.
While I was out there watching the activities of all of the boats off the end of the headland and in the Baie de Mont St Michel I was overflown by another light aeroplane. Unfortunately it was far too far out for me to be able to read its registration number.
And as you might expect, the records of the control tower at the airport here were of no use whatsoever. No planes were recorded as having landed round about this time so I couldn’t even check to see if a flight plan had been filed or if it had been picked up by radar at any point during the afternoon.
So I pushed along the path on top of the headland round to the viewing point overlooking the harbour, dodging the unmasked millions as I did so.
From the viewpoint there’s a good view looking down into the chantier navale. I was expecting to see some changes down there over the period while I had been away, but apparently not so. The yacht Rebelle is still down there, up on blocks at the side of the harbour where Aztec Lady lived for so long.
The fishing boat that moved in there not long before I went away is still there too, so there have been no goings, and no comings either, unless I missed them while I wasn’t here.
And there was nothing else going on very much so I went to look at the Citroen on the car park.
One of the things that I did earlier this morning that I have yet to mention was that I made some bread dough. On my return I gave it the second kneading, shaped it and put it in the bread mould.
Then I made a pile of pastry mix, lined a pie dish with some of it, made a filling out of diced apple, raisins, desiccated coconut, cinnamon and lemon juice, and then covered the pie with the rest of the pastry. It was then sealed, brushed with milk, dusted with brown sugar and priced to let out the steam.
With the pastry that was left and the filling that was left, I made an apple turnover.
That lot went into the oven and while they were baking I attended to the pizza. I’d taken the dough out of the freezer earlier and now I kneaded it, rolled it and put it in the pizza dish to rise. After an hour or so when it had risen I assembled the pizza with that I had (which wasn’t much).
And here are the finished products. The pizza is delicious even if it was undercooked because I forgot to turn up the oven after the bread.
As for the rest of the food you’ll have to wait until tomorrow because I had no room for any pudding or any bread tonight after the pizza. I shall look forward to that with eager anticipation.
So now that’s all done and I can think about going to bed. Despite the late start I’m ready for an early night what with having to do my radio programme in the morning. And that reminds me – I mustn’t forget to switch the alarms back on for tomorrow morning otherwise I’ll be in a right jam.
But not a jam pie. Thats maybe for a few weeks’ time.