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September 11, 2008

The Portuguese neighbour appears at my door shortly after my return to France, clutching a plastic carrier bag. He too has been away for most of the summer.

'I've bought you some presents from Portugal,' he says. 'I spent a long time thinking about what to get you.'

'Oh dear god,' I think, gingerly opening the bag.

Inside, I find a bottle of port and.... wait for it... a statue of the Madonna - and a rather sorrowful looking one at that.. For once I am speechless and I hope that my face does not betray my horror.

'You are Catholic?' he says, looking concerned.

'Er yes, I did go to catholic school,' I reply, wondering what on earth I am going to do with the statue.

'You do like it then?'

'Um. Yes. It's very nice. Thank you.'

After he has gone, I put it in a box of unwanted presents destined for M├ędecins Sans Frontieres. And it occurs to me that it might be time to move. Provence seems like a very nice place.

comments (2)

1. Posted by eldorado on September 11, 2008 3:39 PM

Ha, ha, ha, ha!

2. Posted by Susie on September 13, 2008 10:07 PM

Could you not use the virgin as a paperweight? Or a meat tenderizer? A weapon for self-defence? Repaint it as a garden gnome? There must be some use for her. If she's one of the luminous variety you could use her as a night-light. :-)

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