This must look as if I've really got into the theme of death but no, don't worry this is about a roundabout......and a memorial.
The French came late to roundabouts at least in this area. When we first arrived there were few indeed and at junctions Napoleon's rule of Priority to the Right still held sway.
The roundabout though is a much more sensible way of dealing with motor traffic; I mean no offence to Napoleon here.
Now they're everywhere and many are"sponsored" by local landscape gardeners and garden centres to showcase their work, an excellently practical idea which we all benefit from. In fact I've stolen a few ideas myself for my own garden.
Now to the second part of the story;
sometimes you come across a person who has the gift of living well (I don't mean in a hedonistic sense) who manages to cram so much into their life it makes you dizzy. Such a man was Coluche who started his career as a stand up comedian, became a film star, set a motor cycle speed record and stood for President of France. Impressive career but now listen to this: he worked actively to combat racism and in 1985 set up an association called Les Restaurants du Coeur. which helps to feed the socially marginalised.
In Winter occasionally their volunteers stand outside the supermarkets and ask people to buy with their shopping one or more items from a list. Such an easy way of giving.
Coluche had a passion for motorbikes and died at the age of 42 in Opio in a road accident.
His fans and there are a multitude have erected this memorial near where he died and every year on a Sunday near the anniverary they turn up here on motor bikes in their hundreds to commemorate this great man. You really have to see it; it's unbelievable. No one could wish for a finer tribute.
A couple of years ago after this informal service his fans left a sign naming the newly constructed roundabout "Rondpoint Coluche"and there the sign stayed, a reminder of a good man,......for a few months until the local Mairie, the council, quietly replaced the sign with the more geographically correct "Rond Point du Piol."
Something to do with politics, I believe. Coluche was, after all, a socialist. These days, it seems it's not enough to be good.