I came back from a holiday in France a year or two ago, and decided that I needed to take my schoolgirl French by the scruff of the neck, pull up its socks, and generally mix all metaphors in an attempt to make something useable out of it. I found myself a podcast called Daily French, listened to it religiously for a month maybe, and came away with a brilliantly improved French-speaking English accent. My rendition of the phrases: “Daily French” or “daily pod” are second to none. And it is its spirit that I offer you “daily dog” – just imagine a Poirot of your choosing saying the words, and that is what I am hearing in my head.
All of which is senseless meandering, of course, unless I can tie together dog sketches and France. But zut alors, what about that French classic, le Caniche, or, as I would say ze Poodle.
And of course, the French theme continues through the material – the off-cuts to my daughter’s curtains: Toile de Joie.
Obviously, to an addict like myself, all fabric has the potential to stimulate joie; and to a pedant like myself (and one who has just looked it up to check the spelling), the fabric is, in fact, called Toile de Jouy, not de Joie. It is therefore not cloth that produces joy, but cloth that is produced in Jouy (a town not far from Versailles). Not sure how I feel about those curtains now – though I suppose an C18th French Lady riding on a poodle is still undeniably joyful.
But it wasn’t just a poodle. I have a number of other dogs cavorting with the hooped skirts and flounces. The less French Dalmatian and St Bernard:
And then something of a whole host of unidentified pups. They’re named and numbered over in my stories on Instagram if you’re interested. Otherwise, let’s play a game of guess that breed:
I love the way the bottom right fellow is swinging in the bunting. There were a couple of accidental interactions between dog and background (and one or two not so accidental).
And, to end, another shot of that glorious material. Hats off to the citizens of Jouy, we say: