After four years as a customer at her small farm nearby, Mme Roustand actually asked me my name. I buy wonderful eggs and vegetables from her, but not as often as I should. We live in a tiny farming hamlet consisting of six homes and eight souls.For the most part they are a farmers, retired or about to retire, save for Patrick who is a dairy farmer in his prime. He appears to work ceaselessly, making nonsense of the 35 hour week. Everyone in the hamlet, apart from us, grows wonderful vegetables. They all have chickens and ducks for their eggs, and in one of their barns there will be rows of hutches with rabbits and chickens ready for the pot.There may well be a pig fattening for slaughter in February or March, or when it has achieved the required weight. I asked our neighbour, Jeanette, why it was that there was no real cream to be had in France. She explained that after picking up her fresh milk from Patrick the dairy farmer, she boiled it up in a saucepan, let it cool, and took the cream off the top.These people are truly.self sufficient.Their tiny bags of rubbish shame us.I, however, am not a farmer. I’m a photographer living out the last part of his life, with my wife, in the backwaters of the Vendee, after a lifetime in London.As old habits die hard, I’m still a supermarket customer. I gave up smoking, and several other bad habits, with no difficulty but the supermarket cannot be denied. Which accounts for my delight at Mme Roustand’s interest in my name, as the cashiers at the supermarket show no interest in that respect.The eggs that I bought this morning are wonderful. Pastry, mayonnaise, mashed potato – all are tinged with gold when these eggs are involved in their creation. I also bought a bunch of leeks.