The opening event to launch this year's programme for the Cercle Français de Belfast took place this evening in the Dark Horse Coffee House in the Cathedral Quarter. Nearly 50 people turned up and several took out membership on the spot. The programme published on a separate page on this site is a varied one and many of the speakers were present to explain what their talk would cover.
After the programme was announced some of the participants took to the floor to provide commentaries on photos they had taken on a recent trip to France. Amélie had submitted a photo of a château in her native Franche-Comte and urged us to go visit; Hélène, an inhabitant of Paris showed her photos of the Basque Country and a beautiful coastal chateau close to Biarritz. Helene's contribution was closely followed by Michael who this and every year heads to Provence in search of Azur blue skies. That colour was much in evidence in his photos of Avignon and Uzes, in the Languedoc. Claudine shared some fascinating photos of another chateau, concentrating this time on its use as a prison for some well-to-do offenders. Claudine's husband, Seamus followed up by showing pictures of his gardening efforts around the family home near Blois. Finally, Jim shared a photo montage of French country windows set to music with accompanying captions which he translated.
There is something about evenings such as this when members share their experiences and enthusiasms. Many of those attending complimented the night and the programme. Relaxed and informal, the atmosphere of the Dark Horse could have matched a grand café in Paris and certainly there was a buzz of conversation in both English and French. We need to do more of this.
Were you there? Do you agree? See you next time!
À la prochaine!