Random thoughts of a rapidly ageing Englshman who wishes he was retired and living in Fance

Saturday, 14 March 2009

Ring My Bell

I have to admit to an ever so slight interest in things campanological. It all started long ago when I read The Nine Tailors (Daphne du Maurier). An excellent tale of triple bobs and murder in the fens.

Now for those of you who's education tended more towards the Comprehensive than Ecclesiastical and are wondering what the old fool is on about this time, its BELLs and (for once) I don't mean of the alcoholic whiskey variety!

Years ago I used to be a (fairly bad) bell-ringer...and even earned 50p per wedding which was the price of a good 3 pints back then. Its not easy you know, you don't just yank the rope and it all happens, you actually do speed it up and slow it down, and you have to be able to follow the number patterns as well, and pull hard enough to make sure your bell stays up, but not so hard it bounces, at the right time......its all very technical stuff.

These days my bell ringing is a bit more mainstream. I stick to doorbells.

When we bought our Grand Pressigny Chateau, or at least looked round it, it had a lovely old bell, with a chain and proper handle.......

But this mysteriously disappeared with all the contents before we got our hands on the place. Which is a real pity cos it was one of the very few things I really hoped would remain. So our first French purchase for our new home was, that symbol of welcome, a doorbell.
Then I cut down the rampant hydrangeas so you could actually get to it!

Its not quite as intricate as the original and is no doubt a modern cast thing, but it has a lovely light note that always gets you attention. And visitors find the string easy to operate!

We've even added an outside light to help them find it.


Anonymous said...

Aaah, pictures like these, They're wonderful. They show how much love goes into doing up your own place, your own little patch of France. Get the front door right first, so that all can see how much you love the place.

NickL said...

You're so right! It may be an english thing but I do like to try and let the locals know we care!