Monday, July 24, 2006

itinéraire culturel

Out with the Luzec historical crowd today for a 'cultural journey' in blazing heat. Started in Relec Abbey, with its damp Cistercian atmosphere and dreadful accoustic (sorry, excellent, according to the locals). Jean-Marie Ploneis, a linguistics professor (who recently bought a copy of my history of Brittany) gives a brief talk to introduce La Quévaise, a form of medieval monastic land tenure significant to the environmental and sociological development of the Monts d'Arrée and the Trégor. His words reverberate around the lofty ancient abbey and are totally lost in an aura of green mould. Then we all trail off in about thirty cars to the archaeological site of Goenidou to stand around listening to him speak more distinctly in direct baking hot sun for an hour before someone suggests that moving into the shade might prevent a few early deaths. Louis Elégoet, who has the merit of being very attractive as well as a fervent, devastatingly lucid historian, is also of the party and has much of interest to contribute. I admire his work greatly and always enjoy the chance to see him in action. Home exhausted and shrivelled for that well-known sun-stroke preventative: ice-cold vodka. Always works.

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