Living in France for 3 months with Jeannine & Roger

cocumont vinyard

Cocumont 21st May

A beautiful spring day and the Pentecost public holiday have brought more tourists and sellers to our local Monday market. The biggest queue was for the rotisserie cart; little chickens were obviously hot on the lunch menu today.

Having done the “Cultural Immersion” thing for the day by going to the market, we then went geocaching in Cocumont to escape the crowds. First up was Terra Aventura’s multi which takes you on a tour around some of the vineyards that supply the ‘Cave du Marmandais’. French word of the day ‘cave’ translates to ‘cellar’. If you aren’t already aware of Terra Aventura’s caches, he makes you discover places by solving puzzles and questions based on information boards or features on a route. A 5km walk around unsheltered vineyards in 29deg heat probably wasn’t my smartest decision for the day.

Here is an example of the questions asked:

  1. Which wine means "who keeps"? How many letters are there in this compound name? Note this number that is worth "C"
  2. The winemaker makes his accounts after geocachers have come to taste his wine. Before their passage, the full barrel weighed 232 kilograms. After the tasting, he weighed only 124 kilos and was half full. How much does the empty barrel weigh? Note this number which is worth "E".
  3. Observe the map. How many vineyards are on the Lot-et-Garonne department? Note this figure that is worth "G"

You may think they are simple questions, but when the information boards are in french it gets a little tricky.
The answers to the questions if you were wondering are: C = Le Fer-Servadou, E=16kgs, G=4

Each of the questions are important for learning about wine production, even the last question because where vineyards are geographically determines the wine production and labelling as governed by the AoP (Appellation of Origin of Protection) standards. An appellation is a legally defined and protected geographical indication used to identify where the grapes for a wine were grown. For example only grapes grown in the Cognac area can be produced and sold as Cognac and only grapes grown in the St Emilion area can be bottled and sold as a St Emilion wine.

Anyway we found the cache, the cache owner suggested 2 hours and we normally take 3, but this time we did it in a record breaking time of 1 hour.

cocumont vineyards

We then did some smaller caches, including a church under renovation, but then heard the rumble of thunder, followed closely by a torrential downpour, geocaching abandoned for the day.

cocumont church

Today’s taste of France was the breakfast of champion geocachers, Roger’s French toast, otherwise known as eggy bread made from old baguette.


Jeannine & Roger

A couple of people who decided to try living in France for three months, to absorb some of the culture and to try a diet of Baguette, Cheese and Wine.

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