Around this time of year, in many villages in France there will be a local fete celebrating la moisson, which is the harvest of the arable crops. We went along to a local-ish village last Sunday to have a have a look see. 'Vieux metiers' translates as old crafts/skills and as you'll see in the following photos the two go hand in hand really. It's all a bit of fun and about seeing how they did these things back in the good old days.
It started with a parade through the centre of the village of everything from a brass band, traditional dancers, Breton horses doing what they used to do in the past (i.e. be working heavy horses), then was followed by a display of ancient tractors and a few other things.
We then moved to the field where the events took place. These events are always held in a stubble field and it's quite fun watching the old threshing machines and having a look around at the displays. These are not huge events and really a couple of hours suffice for seeing all there is to see.
I took quite a few photos which I've tried to whittle down so will just post them here with captions.
|The old boys with their old tools|
|Along came the dancers|
|The best bit for me - seeing the Breton horses scrubbed up and |
actually doing some heavy horse work
|I'm no expert but there may be some Cob Normand in this one. |
It looks just a bit different around the neck and head, and is a bay rather than
chestnut or the lovely almost palamino colour of many Bretons
with their blonde manes and tails.
|Now onto the old tractors|
|Some of which were lovingly restored and painted in bright colours|
|Some belched out clouds of smoke!|
|Some looked like they'd been rusting away in the corner of a barn for the last 50 years!|
|The Pompiers (Fire Brigade) from times gone by|
|A combine. I can't say as the ones I see in the small fields here look any more modern ;-)|
|Breton pulling a gypsy caravan|
|We looked inside later. It had a stove for heating/cooking on and a bed at the back.|
It was really tiny inside.
|Over in the field the old threshing machines (les batteuses) were going.|
|Perhaps there was a problem with this one!|
|I'm not entirely sure, but I think this is how they did it before steam or diesel power. |
Working horses going round and round. Must have been boring!
|There was some local Breton dancing|
|And this exhibit which cracked me up! |
A display of how they did the laundry in the good old days.
Those poor women must have had dreadful backache the next day!
|Last but not least.|
Me sporting my new basket which I bought
from the man selling hand made baskets.
I love it!