A day with the Chasse
Today I took up an invitation from the president of my local chasse in the Correze France to spend the day as an observer.
As I drove to the venue across country on farm tracks the sun was just beginning to rise and mist was lying in the valleys. I reached the destination on time at 7.30am and after a lot of hand shaking we went off to inspect the maize crops to check for signs of Boar - we found plenty.
We arrived back at HQ at 9.30am and members were beginning to assemble.
Dogs were being fitted with bells and GPS units, members were donning high-viz jackets and hats and I thought we were about ready for the off when a door opened to reveal a table set up ready for breakfast which consisted of bread spread with raw garlic and salted pigs lard, cured sausage, pate, gherkins, red wine, then coffee.
All licences and insurance details were noted in the presidents log and after the obligatory safety talk all guns and dog handlers loaded up and drove off to take up their positions.
The dogs and owners vanished into the maize and we drove to a safe position on a hill overlooking the area. Dogs started barking and horns were being blown but after a couple of hours the hunt was called off as the boar had given the hunters the slip.
Back at the lodge a table had been set in the open with all sorts of aperitifs
and nibbles. Members with arms pointing in all directions were saying how the boar had slid sideways out of the maize and into the forest. After a glass of whisky I went up to the President to thank him for the day but he explained that lunch would be served in about ten minutes,
Walking into the lodge I found two rows of tables neatly set, the members then sat down to a five course meal. Red wine was poured into jugs from coke bottles and it was delicious, the wine hit the spot the banter started and a good time was had by all, fortunately for me, the short journey home was off road, so not a problem.
Considering my very poor French, I found the members very welcoming, I had a great day, and I have been invited back in a fortnight.