Sunday, 17 August 2014

La Mechoui

Filled with wine bottles


"On prend un verre!"

Way up a tree, running water pipes over a path
Crazy long boozy lunch for the volunteers
Flipping cutlery into a cup, always fun
No banner long enough for 'St. Aubin Fosse Louvain'

 The social event of the year in St. Aubin Fosse Louvain is the Mechoui.  Mechoui comes from a North African word for roasting a whole animal over a spit.  It's the county fair, and I ended up helping out with setting up and breaking down the Mechoui for four long, sweaty, and boozy days.  I have new respect for carnies, as those damn tents are heavy and awkward to put up.  A lot of the time was spent driving in trucks and tractors to surrounding towns to load up all the tents and gear, then bringing it back after the Mechoui.    
  French farmers love to stand around and debate how to get things done for a while, which was interesting to watch (at first).  Also, there's the 'grab-ass' ritual, whereby everyone lines up and shakes each other's hands, then bullshits and catches up for 20 minutes.  After shaking the hands of about 30 farmers I made the mistake of shaking one guy's hand twice.  He was shocked, and possibly insulted.  In spite of an ocean of large calloused hands, they know exactly which are left unshaken, because they walk around either shaking, or passing people by, saying 'Je t'ai vu.'
  Anyhoo, it was a big pile of good times, although I only spent about 20 minutes at the actual event.  It was hot and I couldn't be arsed.

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