and Alain, the President of the Cruising Club of Haut Picardie, threw a surprise 'dessert party'.
I thought I would offer to serve Pimms in honour of England's National Day but withdrew rapidly when I saw the number of bottle of Charles de Fere 'blanc de blanks' the President had supplied.
The 'desserts' were fruit tartes - lots of fruit tartes - huge party-sized apple, cherry, strawberry, raspberry and mirabel tartes as well as individual ones. There was enough for two helpings each and third helpings for the hollow-legged guests.
Four of the boat crews were British, the rest were French. It was a delighful evening, out in the shade of the cherry trees, the tartes and champagne set out on benches and the picnic blanket (which Elodie claimed just as Ron began his mad play-bowing and lunatic dashing hihther and thither). Ron and his lady-friend, Elodie, were very well behaved and were given tidbits as reward for their constraint. The champagne was still flowing when I left at 9.45pm to give Ron his dinner.
The President again toasted the beginning of the season with well and good camaraderie to all.
The following day was Easter Sunday and, thanks to my new slow cooker, I was able to cooker Easter Lamb, the gravy from which was used as the base for beef in beer on Monday.
Our neighbours, Bob and Anna, were returning to UK early on Tuesday so they were our dinner guests. Anna provided a trifle for dessert and Bob had chilled a rather nice bottle of Cremant de Loire.
The day was quite warm but there was a strong wind blowing so, instead of setting up under the trees, I served dinner in the front cabin.
We're still in port but almost ready to set off. We'll wait until the wind dies down and then give the engine a couple of hours test-run before committing to a few weeks' cruise.