samedi 24 octobre 2009

GEMO National Competition Part 2

A few more photos and descriptions of the show day.
The competition was hosted by the Parc Naturel Régional d'Armorique and organised by the association Bro an Are - Terres d'Aree. There were a large number of stalls, events and exhibitions going on, on the day, many of which I didn't get to see but a few close to hand that caught my eye were some of the livestock.

There are several breeds who teeter on the brink of dying out and this breed along with the ouessant has been one of them. Until recently I had found very little on them and it was the first time I had come face to face with some at the show, some essential differences and also some similarities but they are not the only local breed found in Brittany.

Familiar colours but a much larger more commercial breed of sheep altogether.

They also had some of the local rare breed goat, Chèvre des Fossés. I absolutely fell in love with these goats.

With long hair all over and a very fetching set of bushy eyebrows, I found them hugely appealing. If only I had the space................
Most of the stalls were local crafts or had an environmental aproach to their trade.
And finally at the end of a long day and with a two hour drive home ahead of me, the awarding of the prizes, the book I received curtesy of the Ecomusée Monts d'Aree was a real treasure.

A series of charming black and white photographs of people and events in the region with verses in Breton, French and English. Many of the photographs had a timeless quality to them, really lovely. The perfect end to a good day.

The Ouessant Sheep originates from the island of Ouessant, part of a tiny archipelago just off the north coast of Finistere, Brittany. The island of terror as it was known to some, was swept by the full force of the atlantic’s weather, the hardy sheep adapted to survive on poor grazing from salty clifftop meadows. It was the women of the island that raised the sheep, renowned for their black wool to weave into cloth known locally as berlinge and their meat with its sweet and delicate taste.

La race "Mouton d'Ouessant" est originaire de l’île d’’Ouessant qui fait parti d’un petit archipel au large du Finistère, Bretagne. L’île de l'épouvante comme c'était connu par certains était balayé par les intempéries de l’atlantique, ces moutons rustiques s'adaptaient à survivre sur les pâturages pauvres des falaises salées. C’était les femmes de l’île qui élevaient les moutons réputés pour leur laine noire à tisser « la berlinge » une étoffe régionale et leur viande avec un goût doux et délicat.

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