Historic inventions in our streets

Each year, the Sunday afternoon parade is a highlight of Daglan’s four-day Fête de la Saint-Louis, and it always has a theme (Liberation, Music, Civilization, the Western movie, and so on). This year’s theme was historic inventions.

The inventions highlighted in the parade weren’t necessarily ones I would have chosen, but clearly some thought and a lot of work had gone into planning the parade and its floats.

What follows is a photographic review of some of the entries, starting with the steam engine (which I’ll admit looks a lot like a tractor) driving a train.

Choo choo!

The jet engine is a more modern invention, and is particularly impressive when mounted in a little airplane or rocket that in turn is mounted on a small scooter. This one was scooting around and weaving its way through the other entries:

Here he comes — again!

Plastic is of course an historic invention, and one of its many uses — as demonstrated on this float — is in the manufacture of very large condoms, which in fact can be worn on the head:

There’s nothing like protection.

It was natural that an airplane would be featured among historic inventions, although I had the feeling that this entry had been seen before — when the parade theme was Liberation. By the way, the words on the side of the plane’s nose mean The Widow Maker.

A bit of historical research (thank you, Mr. Internet) turned up the fact that many planes have had that nick name over the years, including one unfortunate new model in World War II that kept stalling and crashing, thus making widows out of the young pilots’ wives. Here it is:

And away it goes!

The band may not be considered an historic invention (or maybe it is), but this group of marching musicians added a lot of life to the parade, and for a time drowned out the music of the bumper car ride:

Playing to beat the band.

The telephone was clearly a major breakthrough in communications (and did you know that Alexander Graham Bell invented it in Canada?). I’m pretty sure the first one wasn’t pink, but this version was fairly attractive:

Give me a ring sometime!

A large sign on the front of the next float highlighted the 100th anniversary of rugby in Daglan, but the contraption on the platform  stumped my wife Jan and me at first.

Clearly the vertical column was some sort of chimney, but what was that word on the right-hand cylinder? (On the left of the chimney were the letters RCD, for Rugby Club of Daglan.) See if you can make it out:

Smoke was pouring out of the chimney.

We had to ask four fluent French speakers before we got the answer: Gnôle means hooch. That is, moonshine. Fun guys, these rugby fans!



This entry was posted in Festivals in France, Life in southwest France, Tourist attractions and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Historic inventions in our streets

  1. D2 says:

    We are always amazed at the creativity in the parade. A good sense of humour can be a great link between different cultures without even knowing the language.

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