The moon rose, fat and yellow as a summer wheel of wheat lit on fire and sent rolling down the hill. Wispy clouds couldn’t hide its smile. We strolled through town, stopping at one show then another,  finally settling for a group playing “Purple Rain”. It seemed fitting, after all this wet weather. My daughter and her friends were in the crowd – standing under the charm tree, just outside the wine bar.

The pavement was still wet from the day’s soaking, but there were loads of people out and about. It’s the month of Ramadan and so the evening meal is taken very late in the Muslim community. Parents and children were still taking walks in the village after midnight. A young man was twirling a sparkling purple baton, a couple was pushing their son on his tricycle. As usual in Mantes there was a cosmopolitan mixture of people from around the globe. This village always makes me feel as if I’ve been on a voyage, and last evening, it was accompanied by music.