Monday, July 24, 2006

A Small Injection Into the Ailing French Economy

Apologies for no Blog posts since Friday, but this week-end was devoted to the wedding of my youngest daughter, an event that must have injected a fair sum into the French economy because 148 people attended, most of whom travelled from Scotland (plus two families from Australia and the United States and several from other European countries, including, of course, France).

Weddings take time to be planned, organised, administered and delivered, especially when they are a three-day party in rural France. They also provide an insight into the French administration of civil marriages, in this case in the offices of the Marie (the mayor) of a small commune, near Bordeaux. The amount of form filling is normal for anything that requires official sanction in France (after 17 years, I am beginning to understand French administrative 'logic' -a 'law' unto itself), complicated by the necessity to have everything interpreted (by officially appointed translators in Edinburgh) and affirmed as accurate and true by the British Consulate’s offices in Edinburgh and Paris.

The Marie of the Commune, complete with the red, white and blue tricolour sash, and with the proceedings overlooked by a bust of ‘Marianne’, the symbol of the Republic, and a large photo of the President Chirac of France, conducted the exchange of affirmations, and allowed the couple to exchange their wedding vows and rings.

So, colleagues, I have been particularly busy this weekend and I refrained from announcing beforehand the interlude in my Blogging on the grounds that I did not wish to tempt fate and, frankly, my attention was focussed elsewhere.

Well, back to work from today…


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