Saturday, 20 October 2012

Comings and goings

When we arrived here for the very first time, in 2005, Cormatin still hosted the Musée du Vélo, a very interesting museum displaying a large collection of historical bicycles and bicycle accessories, such as pre-war bicycle tax shields which had to be displayed on the head tube of the bike. The museum was conveniently located next to the Voie Verte, in between Cormatin and Chazelle. In 2007 the museum closed its doors, and became Musée du Poilu in 2008. This museum displayed a collection of handicraft made by the soldiers in the trenches (Poilus) during the first world war. This museum ceased to exist as well; the doors closed the end of last year. The collection of the bicycle museum however has found a new home in Tournus. In 2010 the new Musée du Vélo re-opened, a couple of weeks after the owner of the collection died.
And now the building is again occupied, this time by “Aux forges d’antan”, which means something like “In the forges of yore”. The owner is Franck Souville, an artisanal smith who makes exclusive knives out of Damascus steel. Whether the ex-Musée du Poilu will become an annexe of the original forge in the Doubs, or whether it will become a sales outlet for the exclusive knives of Souville is at this moment in time (mid 2012) not entirely clear.
The “Mon atelier” page of his site shows a video, and there my eye was caught by a price tag of € 200 on a knife. I do not think one would be able to buy a cheap potato peeler here...

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Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Viva Las Vegas!

The number of blogs about this thrilling subject is slowly starting to resemble an old fashioned feuilleton! This is already the third, and as far as I am concerned (hopefully) the last episode.


Shortly after the publication of the last blog the new triptych had been placed by members of the ECCA. The old one consisted of plastic strips attached to the metal frame with pop rivets. The new one was consisting of huge plastic stickers (64” x 36”). But before they could be attached, the old ones had to be removed. They turned out to be glued on the frame as well as riveted, and it took 5 men about an hour to dismantle the old and glue on the new signs.
One of the pictures shows Wolfgang’s brand new, illegally installed and now derelict sign resting against the wall. The total number of signs has most likely risen to 16, since knowing the man a little bit, Wolfgang would not be Wolfgang if he would not find a new place for this strip. However, having said that, we have not seen a trace of it since.


One can imagine that no entrepreneur would be happy with only 16 signs, all pointing to his establishment, and the majority of these signs within a radius of 7 yards from his entrance. This man is not easily defeated; somewhere he still had a sandwich blackboard which he has now placed along the Voie Verte, a few yards from his terrace.


Still the man was not content. A few days ago all of a sudden, out of the blue, appeared a sign that could well have been produced in Las Vegas. The arrow flashes, and only the text “BAR 100 BIERES” shines permanently.
The new grand total of signs is now 18; of which one has as yet not been traced.
And with regards to the Las Vegas sign: so far 4 car drivers almost crashed into each other because they could not believe their eyes....


For our own website click here.

Saturday, 6 October 2012

The never-ending story

All artisans, shopkeepers and other small businessmen in Cormatin are united in their "union", the ECCA. In the middle of the village there is a big sign, where all members of the ECCA are described, and where they can be found on the maps of Cormatin and of its surroundings.
This sign is (in theory) renewed once every two years; some businesses are no more and new ones have joined the ECCA. We are waiting already over two years for our name on the notice board, but some people are not as patient as we are. The man who collects signs by the dozen (see my previous blog) had a new sign made and nailed it on the board only a few weeks before the whole thing would have been renewed by the ECCA.
But that is not all; when one leaves the parking area of the château in Cormatin to take the D981 direction Cluny, one finds on that corner a few other signs. And lo and behold, Wolfgang had managed to put signs up there as well!
The count in the previous blog stalled at a meagre 13; this has in the meantime increased to 15 (sounds like I am talking about a death toll!).
It looks as if the number of signs Wolfgang employs is higher than the maximum number of customers he can attract yearly to his beer bar!

For our own website click here.