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Ode to Bouchette

Had you visited the medieval village of Gorbio (my village) in the last ten years, you would have doubtless met Bouchette, the Basset Hound. A fixture in our main square, and the doyenne of all the village dogs. Park your car, walk down to the ‘place’ and there was Bouchette, probably fast asleep in the sun either alone or cuddled up with her housemate, Galinette, a tiny shihtzu. If you were lucky enough to eat at the beautiful Beausejour restaurant, you may well have had her asleep at your feet—the most comforting digestif ever. The Beausejour was her home, Yvan ..
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Dogs in Bags, Baskets, Bicycles and Baby Carriages

When I moved to France all those years ago I was more used to big dogs than small ones. So it was a surprise to see little dogs carried in bags everywhere.  I used to breed, exhibit and judge Old English Sheepdogs and they don’t get carried around in bags!  At first my reaction was ‘Oh no, let them be real dogs and run around,’ and I still think that but I do see the sense of putting a tiny dog in a bag in a busy city, a market place, anywhere with lots of people. The dog feels secure. ..
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When a French village becomes Spanish

Once a year in August, my French village suddenly becomes Spanish!  It’s time for the Festival Flamenco in Gorbio.  Don’t think ‘touristy’ flamenco, this is the real thing, real gitane (gypsy) flamenco with dancers and musicians and singers from all parts of Spain and it’s fabulous!  Not easy to photograph with the fast movement, low light and also constantly changing coloured lights but every year I get a little better at it and love the challenge.    It takes place over three crazy days – we eat paella, we drink sangria, we clap and cheer and during the daytime we meet ..
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How do you say ‘sorry’ in ‘woof’ language?

It only takes a few weeks and suddenly I find I’ve not posted on this blog – then more weeks go by and I justify this to myself by saying, ‘Oh well, everyone sees my photos on Facebook and Instagram.’  I post an image each day on both of those social media platforms at Jilly Bennett Photography.    And then,  several of you lovely people wrote concerned for me – was I ill?  Is everything alright?  How kind and how caring.  Thankyou!  Follow up emails made me realise that not all of you are on Facebook or Instagram, indeed many of ..
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Sanremo – a Day at the Market

  Sanremo is one of my favourite places to visit and it’s only 40 kilometres from Menton.  Hop a train in Menton – change in Ventimiglia, the first stop in Italy, and from there it’s about 15 minutes.    Market day is a good day to go  – Saturday or Tuesday, whether it be for the great food on sale – or if you want a bargain.  You can even buy Italian viagra in Sanremo market – read on!  The market has always had a reputation as a place where you could buy a fake Chanel or fake anything from some ..
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