Friday 24 June 2011

Birthday stroll

marbled white enjoying scabious
Today has been a mix -- of nice things as it is my [Antoinette] birthday, but also of mundane things such as teaching and weekly shopping. 

Effectively it was the last teaching day of the year. Next week the staff are in for in-set and admin meetings but the students have gone.  My teaching being over by lunchtime Niall and I met up and went for a nice lunch at the Pizzeria Sforza just opposite the Hotel de Ville in Loches.

We then did the shopping--a Friday standard and trundled off home and the start of the weekend! Nice cards and a box of goodies had arrived from Scotland via madame la poste. 

cremant de loire
After a relaxing afternoon doing nothing much in particular we opened a simple bottle of rosé Crémant de Loire and had salad for dinner. 

We take a stroll most evenings and the cats frequently come along. 

This evening, attended by Katinka, we wandered down the metalled chemin that leads from the house. Then we branched off to the right along an old very overgrown wall and unpaved chemin. 

marbled whites all huddled together
The light was lovely and on the way back we noticed that hordes of black and white butterflies were perched on the flowers in our neighbour's little hay meadow. They seemed to have a distinct preference for field scabious. We posted a photo of one yesterday and have since found out that these are Marbled Whites.

We also saw another butterfly, but we will need to consult Susan's guide on local butterflies as we have no idea what it is.

All in all a lovely high summer's day.


GaynorB said...

Joyeux anniversaire Antoinette!

Hope you had a wonderful day - it certainly seems like it.

Love the pic of the jug of flowers and the cremant, just right for a real celebration.

Susan said...

They are Violet Fritillaries (aka Weaver's Fritillary). I'm afraid the butterfly section of LVN isn't much more than a species list at the moment - maybe this winter it will fill out to be more like the orchid section.

Craig said...

Happy birthday Antoinette. Your description sounds beautiful. I can't think of a better simple celebration than you described.

wcs said...

Sounds like a great birthday! Happy happy!

The Broad said...

Happy Birthday. What a lovely day you have had. I love celebrating my birthday in France (15 June) as the weather almost always cooperates -- which it never seems to do in the UK :-(

ladybird said...

Gelukkige verjaardag, Antoinette!! Misschien een dagje te laat, maar niettemin van harte!
I'm glad you enjoyed your birthday. That walk sounds really great and relaxing. And so does the Crémant :)

Niall & Antoinette said...

@Gaynor--Thanks! Leaving the jug outside means the butterflies can still make use of the floweers--which they did this morning. :-)

@Craig, Walt-- thanks for the good wishes

@TheBroad-- you're so right about the weather! As a kid in the US it used to be hot and humid; in the UK it was almost always wet, or chilly. Yesterday the French weather did me proud.

@Martine--merci; was inderdaad een heerlijke dag, en nu het weekend er achteraan--niet gek :-)

Niall & Antoinette said...

@Susan--thanks! It would be great if you find the time (I can hear the hollow laugh) to add more photos to the butterfly list. I know I find your Loire Valley Nature sight very useful!

Jean said...

Oops - sorry I'm late wishing you a happy birthday - I hope it was a good one.
Maybe we could meet up to make a personal birthday toast when we are next chez nous in July?

Niall & Antoinette said...

@Jean-- it was indeed. You're on for that toast in July! :-)

Pollygarter said...

Many (belated) happy returns!

Tim said...

Same from me... very belated birfday wishes.

Niall & Antoinette said...

@Tim, @Pauline--thanks :-)