When I'm not peddling yarn or cleaning the house or stripping wallpaper off walls or visiting monasteries, I'm very busy studying French. (To the French, j'etudie.)
I don't do this because I regret not paying attention during the six years I studied French at school in Canada. Or because I've read that old people like me should learn a new language to prevent our brains from atrophying. I do this because I hope someday to live in the village of Loches.
Loches is a lovely little place in the Loire Valley. It has a town square, buildings from the 1600s, and a pretty little river running through it. It's my dream town because it's quiet and quaint and I understand there's an opening for a new Village Idiot.
I dream of moving to that town and taking my place in history amongst a very long and illustrious line of village idiots...plus one town slut named Agnes Sorel. The people of Loches sort of like Agnes La Slut because she lured the King (Charles VII the Randy) there to father her children...and then the town confectioners got to create a candy named after her and sell it to the tourists.
I'm sure they do a lot of other interesting things in Loches (besides you-know-what) but I don't know what they are. If they'd make a candy to commemorate it, maybe I'd learn about it and let you know. But until then, I'm going to assume that Number One on their List of Things To Do is...well, keep the King happy.
Yes, I want to move there to be the Village Idiot, eat candy, and parle francais quand je visitera des magasins et j'achetera des fromages et des legumes. (I'd really like to buy candy, but I don't remember how to say "candy" in French so I'll have to buy beans...and steal the candy.)
Of course, it's never going to happen because the way my retirement savings look I'll be working steadily until:
a. Bernie Madoff gets out of jail and gives us all our money back;
b. France breaks off of Europe and floats to Newfoundland where it crashes into the rocky shores, becomes lodged there, joins North America and I can drive there on a long weekend.
No, I didn't forget about Spain or Portugal. In the upcoming Continental Shift, Portugal will break off of Spain, get caught in the Gulfstream and head up toward Ireland where it will settle in near the Cliffs of Mohr. Then, in an unexpected move, Spain will jettison France so it can hightail it down to the equatorial regions to enjoy the sunshine. No one is quite sure about poor little Andorra who everyone seems to forget. But France, at the encouragement of the Quebecois, will scuttle across the sea toward Celine Dion and André-Philippe Gagnon...who hasn't been seen since the 1980s.
Well, I'd better get back to peddling my yarn...while I practice my francais and curse those French for having a different word for just about everything except "crepe" and "guillotine."
If all the hamlets in England didn't already have their own village idiot, my life would be a whole lot easier.