Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Cows and alarm clocks


A couple of days ago, my husband was out walking in the mountains behind our house late in the afternoon when he heard the gentle clanging of cow bells. Instinctively, he looked for his phone. No, not to take a photo - he did that later, but to turn off his alarm clock. I had to laugh when he recounted the story to me. To explain...when returning to Australia after living in France and looking for a more pleasant wake-up sound than a jarring 'beep, beep, beep',  he took a sound bite of cow bells and set it as his morning alarm. Even in sight of the large beasts, his sub-conscious did a jolt to another time and response and nearly tricked him into hitting the 'slumber' button.

video

Back home and tidying up in the garden, he stripped some ivy off one of the verandah posts and uncovered a cow bell that we had hung there and which, over time, had been completely hidden from view. It seemed like the house was offering us a little 'welcome back to France' present. 


The cows had been a part of our French adventure from the very beginning. Stumbling into an October "Descente des Alpages', in our first year there, we had watched the slowly moving creatures, weighed down by their enormous bells, parade through the streets of Annecy, alongside highly excited geese, necks proudly stretched upright to allow us better viewing of their beautiful bows, groups of disorderly goats reminiscent of the cheeky but loveable souls that can always be found in any school class and pretty donkeys wearing straw hats and flowers. It had been a lucky mistake to be in the middle of it all and, thereafter, the sound of the cows and their bells, which woke us in the mornings and accompanied myself and the children on our daily walks to school, claimed a high ranking in our favourite sounds of the French Alps.




To read more of my family's French adventures, please click here to get your copy of 'But you are in France, Madame'. A Kindle Countdown deal for Amazon UK and USA account holders has just begun.

Hello to readers on Faraway Files. This is my first link-up. I hope it works!





12 comments:

  1. Wonderful story!
    The photo of bells is beautiful.

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    1. Not sure if the sound of the bells got to you or if you had a big blank in the middle of the post. I was trying to be creative with words, images and sounds, but I may have fallen short...thanks, as always for taking the time to read and comment.

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  2. So charming! The sound of those bells just instantly calmed me.

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    1. Ah! The sound did work. So pleased! Thanks Cheryl.

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  3. I got a good laugh out of imagining your husband reaching for his phone alarm when indeed it was real cowbells he was hearing! I can just imagine the cows in the French Alps... What lovely imagery!

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    1. This modern world...makes me want to turn off everything for at least a short while.

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  4. What a wonderful story beautifully told, full of sounds and images of the Alps. Although I holidayed in the Alps many times as a child (I'm from Auvergne), I've never had the chance to see a descente des alpages, and you make it sound like a really special moment to witness. Looking forward to reading more of your stories, and of course your book too! Love the title ;)
    #FarawayFiles

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    1. Thanks Annette. Good to know that the #farawayfiles link-up worked! Your family sounds and looks just delightful - adventurous, cheeky and prepared to give anything a go. Well done to you and yours!

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  5. Listening to cow bells in the French mountains sounds like a pretty idyllic lifestyle to me. Your husband will probably have to change his ringtone to the sound of taxi horns blaring now - worlds away from your French idyll. Thanks for sharing your story on #FarawayFiles

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    1. Hahah - I hope not! Thanks for reading and hosting the link-up.

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  6. When I was a little girl we had a set of cow bells which hung in our living room. I have no idea where they came from or where they are now. I must ring my mother!
    Lovely to read about your French adventures.
    #farawayfiles

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  7. Yes, do! Funny the little sounds that bring back memories...

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