Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Bastille Day Came To Millbrook

Shazzerooneypoos did her marvellous hosting thing, allowing assorted Millbrookians onto her decking and into her dining room to celebrate the Storming of the Bastille two hundred and nineteen years ago yesterday.

Before you go any further into this retelling of the goings on, there's a selection of photos from the night on the complete photosets link to the right; you know how it works by now.

People started drifting onto the decking as a fine Cornish sea mist began to crawl over the hilltops, ensuring that La Fete Nationale would not be enjoyed in blazing sunshine, but in a faintly chilly and moist (aah, my favourite word) atmosphere.

We weren't going to let a little thing like that dampen (or even moisten) our spirits, though.

Here's the moment that Dong arrived along with his boy, The Hoover. Also in shot are TJ on the far left, Dozybean's uppermost parts and Frankenkeith resplendent in red shirtings.

Let's begin by talking about boules. The boules tournament never really got started as an actual tournament; we seemed to lack the killer instinct and competitive spirit. Let alone the organisational skills. Quite a few people had a go, though and we improvised a playing surface from Shazzerooneypoos' front path.

Here's "Cannonball" Pam showing Lester and Yarmatt how it's done, launching one of her trademark cannonball shots.

I had to spend the early part of the celebrations nursing my still well and truly crocked back, but after plenty of pain killers and liquid anaesthetic I found I could move a bit more freely and even succeeded in chucking a boule or two (as long as a gallant The Hoover or YarMatt acted as picker-upper afterwards).

The boules playing carried on well into the darker hours; there's lots of boules photos on the complete photosets link; but I'm especially pleased with a couple of Dong and The Hoover playing the opening match, so here they are: In the second shot, you get (from L-R) Mrs The Millbrooker, Cannonball Pam, The Hoover, Dong, Chrissie, Shazzerooneypoos and YarMatt. So many of the Millbrook glitterati assembled in one place; a veritable night of a few z-listers. Sorry, I meant a thousand stars.

Dong took on barbecue duties and dutifully turned some merguez (spicy sausages, very popular en France) into charcoal so we could crunch through them once they'd been inserted into freshly chopped up baguettes. It's traditional, you know.

Russell declared, after eating his first merguez that he now knew of two things he liked about the French. The other being cheese. We can count the merguez as a success, then. Russell also tucked heartily into some very ripe Roquefort,which was very, very yummy indeed.

Here's Dong proudly displaying his barbecuing prowess and demonstrating smoke signalling techniques at the same time. There's no end to his talents, you know.

We had a firework display, as well. It worked out at around £19,967.00 cheaper than the one held at Mael-Carhaix which we've attended as often as we can in the last few years. We managed to waken most of the village with some very squealy "ninjas" and the rockets kindly donated by Julie and John made a decently loud report along with a great display, echoing along the valley. Several windows across the valley suddenly had lots of people checking out the display. Hope you enjoyed it, guys. If not - apologies for the noise. There's no photos of the fireworks; they never work out properly so I didn't bother taking any.

As a last celebratory event we let off two Chinese lanterns into the night before wending our ways homeward and, in Mrs The Mllbrooker's and my case, a swift nightcap to end proceedings. Here's The Hoover, who also did lots of work on the fireworks with Dong, just before the release of the second lantern:

Thanks are due to Shazzerooneypoos who worked like a Trojan to get things ready; to Dong and The Hoover for sterling work on the day on firework and BBQ duties; to Mrs The Millbrooker who did all the stuff we needed to do unaided by me due to my being unable to move without extreme pain. And, of course, to everyone who came along and made it a great fun and mellow occasion.

Without reference to Wriggly Baby's dad: yarmat!*

*that's "cheers in Breton.

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