Or,  what am I most looking forward to once I am able to travel again? My answers may surprise you, but they are mine own…

1) The cars. The gentle reader may have noticed that I am somewhat of a motor-vehicle fanatic. The days of the Renault 4CV, the Citroën DS19, the Simca Aronde, the Peugeot 403,  the Panhard Dyna Z and so many other fine machines may be long past, but they may still be encountered in classics shows across the region. Besides, it is pleasant to think of a 203 Cabriolet or a Deux Chevaux ambling past the Chateau gates.

2) The films. Not just the starring vehicles for Jean Gabin or Lino Ventura or Simone Signoret but the comedies of Jacques Tati and  Louis de Funes issuing orders to his squad of inept gendarmes. Then there is the ever-lugubrious Philippe Noiret, Jean-Paul Belmondo and Alain Delon both looking furtive, while Albert Camus even mentioned Fernandel in L’Étranger. Of course one can always acquire a DVD, but such actors really do need to be viewed in the lounge of Chateau de Bois Giraud. Preferably accompanied by a coffee and a Prince de LU biscuit.

3) The grounds. There is space enough to stage a plethora of picnics and party games and dance to C’est Le Mashed Potatoes by Johnny Hallyday, even if friends and family urge you not to carry out the last-named pastime. Some people have no taste for the performing arts – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bx1H_9DZ3eU

4) The confectionary. From caramel au beurre sale and Coussin de Lyon, a green-coloured chocolate marzipan local speciality to the Mint’Ho caramel white mints and a lemon-flavoured Carambar. To those who claim that these are images of total and utter self-indulgence – absolutely!

And wherever our readers are – stay safe and looking forward to welcoming you once more.