Tuesday, 18 November 2008

happy banks and innuendos

I haven't seen the peak of La Rhune all day today, and it has rained a fair bit too...

We had a meeting with our bank manager this morning. As with most people I was slightly trepidous beforehand for no rational reason other than it's a bank. On arrival we buzzed the security buzzer (you can't just walk into most branches down here) and the wee receptionist smiled at us through the window before clicking the door open and bidding we enter. We entered and were greeted by Cyril our bank manager, undoubtedly the finest and smartest branch manager on the planet. Behind him stood the entire branch staff, all six of them, and he introduced us to each individually as we shook their hand. It was all very formal and made me feel a little silly with my £1.25 savings account.

Following the introductions he bid we enter his office, more of a boardroom given that space is hardly a premium in these parts. Accompanying him was his deputy Frederic and a young lady wearing an exceptionally short skirt called Sandrine. It transpired that her primary function was to sit next to me, take notes and show an indecent amount of thigh. I like to think that I support sexual equality so struggled a little then remembered where I was and that I should act accordingly. Thereafter her presence was a pleasure.

We conducted our affairs with all three proving an uncanny knowledge of global banking procedures and investments (£1.25 can go a long way if you are patient). The meeting lasted over an hour and it was Maria and I that had to bring it to an end, we were parched. As we have found common in French business meetings, even those that last some time, no offer of water was made. We thanked Cyril et al who had not only helped us enormously but also made us feel exceptionally happy, something no other bank has ever managed to do. As we were leaving Sandrine sidled up to me: "Monsieur Walker, I vill contact you if I 'av any action for you". Bemused but excited by this proposition I was quickly brought to earth by Maria who explained that 'action' was another term for investment opportunity. Hey ho, you live and learn.