Saturday, 29 September 2007

Party Boussagues

Continuing LeeLee's saga this week.......she set her alarm (to get herself up for college) for 6:00am. And she actually got up then! So that's something!

Richard got up at 7:00am to check, and found out that LeeLee had also woken Nic at 6:30am as usually required.

Only problem? Nic does not have school on Saturdays! So she was pissed off with her sister again!!!!

Boussagues is a fortified mountain village about 30 minutes from here. It is situated on a fairly inaccessible hill side (higher altitude than us) and surrounded by the garrigue ie a wilderness of scrub land.

Further up the mountain behind Boussigues is the house of a friend-of-a-friend of LeeLee's, and their land runs down from the house to the village. In the midst of this garrigue, they have a small wood cabin linked up to electricity.

Having set the scene for you - LeeLee was invited to a party there this evening and over night. And when I said 'there' I mean in the garrigue around the cabin, and 'overnight' means you are welcome to bring a tent and sleeping bag.

After sorting out the logistics of getting four friends who all live far away from each other, in one place to then go to/from the party, LeeLee looks out at the rain starting to fall at 19:00 and decides that sleeping under canvas is not her idea of fun. So can we come and pick them up at one in the morning instead of 10:00am tomorrow?

No! Because we are also at a party this evening and would not be in a fit state to drive!

Found another parent able to pick them up and all is hunky dory.

What was interesting was everything we heard about the party from LeeLee and her friends the next day.

About thirty teenagers were there, all knowing each other - some well, others as friends-of-friends. Many cycled there (up hill all the way over rough tracks!) and would cycle home the next day.

On average they drank 6 bottles of lager each - that is, the small dumpy bottles!

The 'drunkest' were two particular people - who were still able to walk though. So not 'seriously drunk' by English standards, by any means! Only two people threw up during the evening/night - and goodness, didn't they have to take some stick for this!

There were no fights whatsoever, and indeed no arguments at all.

Only about five of them smoked, and always went outside the cabin to do so. They also always made sure they were 'down wind' so that their smoke did not annoy anyone! Ah, bless!

They all looked out for each other. If a friend was not around, they phoned them on their mobile to check where they were, and that they were OK. If they did not answer, the word went round that someone was missing and EVERYONE searched around the garrigue until they were found. These are children brought up to understand the dangers of getting lost in a wilderness that is all around them every day. Many of the children live in isolated mas.

The light drizzle did not bother these 'outdoor' youngsters, and having to go behind a bush to answer the call of nature, was not even commented on - other than the fact that the 'English girl' forgot to bring tissues with her like they all did!

The party crowd included a handful of 'hippies', some glamour girls in their glitz and heels and also two punks (with blond Mohican's and black/white checked trousers?!). Everyone got along fine - no aggro at all between the groups.

The two punks had brought along guitars and played during the party. Weird punk songs? Not on your life - songs that everyone knew and could sing along to of course!

The youngsters drank what they liked the taste of - they did not drink with the primary intention of just getting rat-arsed. There was NO CONCERN about drinks being spiked - they were horrified at the very idea!

LeeLee and her friends thoroughly enjoyed themselves. She was sad that her friends and young cousins in England do not get to go to parties like this. She is unfortunately too aware that teenage life back in England is very different.

We do worry about her when/if she goes back to England for university - it will now be quite a culture shock. She recognises this as well.

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