The municipal elections in France went ahead yesterday (Sunday) despite some serious concerns about the spread of the coronavirus, and clearly the citizens of Daglan were (a) in the mood to vote, and (b) in the mood for more of the same. The current Mayor’s entire team was elected.
If the topic is new to you, just check out my posting of yesterday, “A village votes and holds its breath — ensemble.” In it, I published a photograph of the posters of the two competing teams, each with 15 members. Here’s some of what I wrote:
On the left is the poster for Ensemble pour Daglan (“Together for Daglan”), with 15 members running for office, headed by Marie-Odile Delahaye (who would become Mayor if Ensemble gets enough votes). On a separate fact sheet that was delivered door-to-door, all of the candidates’ photos were shown, with their names, their village or hamlet of residence, their occupation, and their age.
On the right is the poster for the team known by the not very catchy title of Aimons Ensemble Daglan Demain. This team of 15 candidates is headed up by Pascal Dussol, who was elected Daglan’s Mayor in the election of 2014, when his team was known as Daglan Demain, or “Daglan Tomorrow.” This year, the names of the candidates are not even shown on the Aimons poster — there is just a group photo.
Despite what seemed to me like pretty lacklustre publicity, the Aimons Ensemble Daglan Demain team proved dominant. And the voter turnout was a whopping 85.4% (at least I believe that’s whopping, compared with other elections I’ve read about). So it looks like Pascal Dussol will be our Mayor until 2026. And to give you a clearer picture of him, here are a couple of photos:
The photo above shows the Mayor (wearing the tri-coloured ribbon of office) with other officials in 2017, opening the renovated Mairie. (The renovation was a pet project of his and included, among other things, moving our postal services into the Mairie, from a building across the street.)
But M. Dussol also has something of a fun side, as you’ll see in this photo from the parade for the village’s August 2016 festival, when the theme for the parade was les civilisations:
So what will the Mayor’s new term bring us? It’s hard to say, since M. Dussol was notably close-mouthed about the future during his annual address to the village (in January), and also during the public meeting last Wednesday, when he presented his team to the village. It seems that in a conservative village, not hearing about changes is a good thing.
Two approaches to the COVID-19 problem: This morning I drove into the neighbouring village of Cénac for some shopping, and was struck by the different approaches taken by two different retail outlets to the coronavirus problem.
My first stop was to the Carrefour supermarket, where everything seemed quite normal — in fact the only change I noticed was that the staff members at checkout counters were wearing gloves. (And one shopper was wearing a face mask.)
But then I needed to buy some kindling for our log burner, and so I drove a bit further to the Point Vert — a nursery that also sells hardware, animal feed, garden tools, and so on. Take a look at this photo, and see if you can spot something unusual:
What’s unusual is that there is a red-and-white striped tape blocking off the entire store, from the fence at the street to the fence at the entrance. So, what was going on? Was Point Vert open, or closed? As it turned out, the answer was: both.
That is, the store was open for business, but customers could not go in. What happened was that, eventually, a young man came out to see me, and asked what I wanted. I told him I needed four bags of kindling. Then he went into the store, and came out several minutes later, to show me how much I would owe him. Once I paid him for that amount, he took my money into the store, and returned with my change.
Was I supposed to get the kindling on my own? No, no! He brought the four bags near my car, where the trunk was standing open. Was I supposed to load the kindling myself? No, no — he would do it. But first I had to back up, to keep a decent distance between him and me. And that was that.
It seems pretty severe, but I supposed it’s better to be safe than sorry. And tonight, we may even get word from France’s President that we are all supposed to self-isolate for a while.
Ever thoughtful, my wife Jan has already hauled a few boxes out of our attic that need sorting (old photographs, papers, correspondence, and so on). If we’re going to be stuck at home, we might as well do something useful.