My dear first sister has been ceremoniously handed over to my brother and sister-in-law, who live in Mayenne. While she is here, she causes me to talk out my substance and to get out more, neither of which are any bad thing, and when she's gone there's plenty of unprocessed stuff on the camera to be sifted and sorted. She always goes away with a pleasant collection of goodies, or 'preciouses', as she refers to them in a Gollum voice: this time they included a rather enviable compact digital camera (her first), a pair of Kickers sandals in green with pretty appliqué leather detail (shoe shop sale in St Brieuc), a piece of striped silk from Emmaus's Big Bastille Day Special Sale (patchwork for the making of), a woven grass shopping basket with leather handles in shades of green and purple from Lamballe market, and a large pack of good quality white card from Noz (probably the best discount shop-cum-rummage sale in the world, on a good day, serendipity rules...). Plus a chunk of our DVD and book collection which she always exchanges with a similar sized chunk from her own.
So I shall try to post a few items on the places we went.
The mussels consumed every year on this coast must be numbered in millions, and most of them are very local. At La Moulerie de la Baie at Jospinet, they are brought in from just a few hundred metres away, from the great serried ranks of bouchots on which they are cultivated.
The posts with their spiralling ropes encrusted with the delicious blue-black bivalves are harvested every low tide by special tractors and amphibious vehicles.
They stand out from the lapping waters like strange, patient beings waiting in line for something, or perhaps in mourning...
... or a little like those mysterious, ancient and inexplicable wood-henges that have been discovered on other shorelines.
As the tide recedes, people, with dogs or horses, or armed with rakes and forks and spades and buckets, quickly chase the retreating waters, to forage, or just to play. It seems irresistible.
We forage with cameras only, on the rocks and in the rockpools,
where the oysters, which I have no desire to bash off the rocks with a big hammer, have taken up residence in abundance.