Three weeks today there is a big event in Cortambert, the Trail du Mont Saint-Romain. The runners will have a choice of parcours of 11km, 17km, or 30km for the serious runners. The latter are expected to climb Mont Saint-Romain, enjoy the view from circling the top, then run all the way back, the fastest arriving at Cortambert foyer rural in an astonishing two and a half to three hours.
There is more information about the event on www.trail-mont-saint-romain.fr/info.php and on the Trail facebook page.
On this bright and sunny but freezing morning there was a reconnaissance for the local runners, a 15km training run up Mont Saint-Romain. Chris went with them to take some photos. Their route was Cortambert – Nouville – Mont Saint-Romain – Culey -Bray -Toury – Cortambert.
The group meets up at the foyer rural in Cortambert
Mont Saint-Romain behind
Coming down past the woods
Regrouping at Culey
The Trail du Mont Saint-Romain is a project that involves many volunteers from Bray, Chissey, Blanot and Bray as well as Cortambert. Teams have been organised to mark out the circuits with direction posts and tape, and every intersection will be marshalled to prevent the runners from taking a wrong turn. There will be people registering, fitting and recovering the timing devices, a commentator and first aiders.
Afterwards a meal is served in the hall for everyone, runners and volunteers, so teams have been organised for peeling vegetables, making soup and apple pies, and dishing out plates of food. So even if you are not a runner there is no shortage of other things to do. With all this preparation the Trail is bound to be a success; we just need the good weather. Bon courage to all the runners!
This weekend it was the turn of our club, Country Dreams Cluny, to hold a line dance afternoon. It was very successful, well attended and enjoyed by all. Here are a few photos -
Annie, Marie-Claude and Nicole greet the arrivals
Max (L) with Jean-Pierre and Mano man the bar
Ready with the music
Christiane as MC
Country Dreams ready to go
Dancing led by Country River Saône from Mâcon
Marie-Claude struts her stuff, Christiane and Cathy behind
More can be seen on Chris’s videos on https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLGNOEJEz1Z_UktnewUa3A-Bx4BYDgFmLW
Now to start practising for the next event which will be the St Patrick’s Dance at the Griottons on March 10th. All are welcome.
Last night, despite the cold weather, there was a good turnout of families to see this year’s lights in Cluny. Thankfully the events were not so drawn out nor so weird as usual. The Ombres Blanches, four ladies on stilts in beautiful floaty costumes led the procession through the town to the market place.
One of the shop fronts on the main street
In front of the Abbey we gathered to watch a lively performance of fire dancing and pyrotechnics with Lughna by Cie l’Arche en sel.
Don’t try this at home
After another wander round town we returned to find the Abbey open, and the four ombres blanches were leading a procession round the cloisters. Following behind was the semeur d’étoiles, alias Gérard Thélier, our resident historian.
The ombres blanches in the Abbey
Le semeur d’étoiles
It was nice to see the children so enthralled. The evening was cut short as the horse spectacular was cancelled. Just as well as the snow had begun to fall and it was nice to get home to a warm fire.
I don’t usually feel the cold but yesterday we were chilled to the bone. I think the raw weather put a lot of people off visiting ‘Les Oiseaux Rares’ this weekend, or at least they moved smartly between venues and didn’t linger. ‘Les Oiseaux Rares’ are a group of 25 artists in Cormatin who collectively open their workshops and studios the last weekend in November. You follow the bird footprints chalked on the pavements to go from one venue to another. They use the Mairie, tourist office and church in addition to their workshops. Each door is decorated with a wooden bird which is supposed to be a caricature of the artist within.
The bird at the entrance to the church…
wherein was the artist Patrick Balleriaud with his latest paintings
You can buy a bowl produced by one of the potters and at every exhibition try the homemade soup on offer. Perhaps we arrived too early for that but at the workshop of Pascale Ponsard we enjoyed some mulled orange which fortified us for our return through Cormatin.
The bowls, but where was the soup? Pascale Ponsard’s silk scarves piled on the bench behind
Returning to the church we admired the work of Patrick’s partner, Silvyanne, who runs workshops making things out of what you and I would call rubbish. Her work always reminds me of the Art Brut of Johé Gormand of Cortambert (famous after her death in 1963).
There are special day or weekend art courses available at the studios of Patrick Ballérinaud for visitors and locals alike. See www.studioballeriaud.fr. We had a lovely day last year learning how to sketch and watercolour landscapes. His portaits are excellent; we have the last priest of Cormatin in the hall at La Maison du Curé. At the moment Patrick is sketching portraits of the grandchildren. You just need to send an email with a photo. Great for Christmas presents.