Today I went to visit Murielle to buy half a lamb (organic and locally grown!)
She gave me fairly precise directions to find her - she lives out in the country. But I forgot to ask how many metres, no, kilometres, before each section. My mobile phone stopped working. Here I was in a city car winding my way around unknown country!
I arrived at a field and saw another car parked there. Was it Murielle's car with a note on it ? I went to look... and heard someone calling out. I looked around and across the small valley saw three figures watching me. Obviously, it was their car and not Murielle's.
Nothing for it - I had to follow the dirt road and try and find her house. The road looked too rough for my car, so I pulled out the cooler and prepared to walk the next section. A smallish white-haired man was walking towards me "Can I help you ? I'm from the Forestry office."
I explained my mission. "I'm looking for the house called 'le Pouzat'." "You mean the hippy types ? It's another 800 metres from here, but you can't get to it by car - the road is too rough. You will see a grey car parked in a bay. Stop there and continue on foot another 800 m."
Mmm, I'm dubious about getting through. Already I have to turn around and the wheels skid on the wet grass. The other 2 men have joined us by now and push me out of the soggy ground. I turn the car then bump my way through the ruts and over tree roots, find the parking bay with the other car, lock up, grab the cooler and head down the last part of the unmade road. A four-wheel drive powers up toward me. Yay! it's Murielle. She has rung home and discovered I was on my way and has come to meet me. We get to her house in one piece and I get my lamb and a nice cup of coffee.
I'll go back there - not by the same route though. But Murielle wants another visit. She has chosen to live there with her companion and has raised 3 daughters. She is into alternative living. Lives off her pottery and vegetable garden. Her partner is the local pot grower and seller. I will go back, because Murielle is a new Christian and has this incredible thirst for the Word of God.