How wrong can you get an article?

We’re used to journalists getting things wrong when they write about us at Notaires and our llamas in papers or magazines, but the last example takes things to extremes. The Pays du Limousin summer special lists things to do and see in Limousin over July and August. A guy showed up a month or so ago to take a few photos. He wasn’t a journalist and only had a scrap of paper with him, which I assumed were directions. He said he was taking photos of the Nouzerines area (Nouzerines is our local village). He scribbled a few names, took his pictures, and that was all. So it came as a complete surprise when someone said what a nice write-up about us they’d read in the magazine.

My heart sank. What had they said? So I went to get a copy and, oh boy, it’s worse than we feared. I appreciate that they want to promote us, but I’m aghast that no one thought to let me know what they planned to say about us and check some of the details. They’re pretty much all wrong!

First up, the intro says that you can have rides on llamas. Horrors! You can’t ride llamas, end of story, as their backs aren’t strong enough, and no one has ever ridden ours. So where this came from, I have no idea.

Somebody’s overactive imagination!

Next up, it says that we left Ireland because we couldn’t find land to set up a llama farm there and so came to France for that one purpose. We had seen three llamas at an agricultural show in Ireland and thought they looked interesting, but that was it. The whole owning llamas thing developed into a joke with our eldest son after our arrival here, which is what led us to go and visit Bernard Morestin’s llama farm. We ended up buying our first llamas from him. Our llamas have only ever been a hobby, and still are. Alder and Notaire’s Lakes and the gite are our main business.

And so it goes on. Llamas don’t like rain (nonsense), apparently we offer ‘sportive’ treks with our animals (?), and people can stroke, feed and brush our llamas. The llamas could cope with the feeding, although Katrina would get grumpy if she didn’t get all the treats, but as for the stroking and brushing – no way. They are happy to come up and sniff visitors, but don’t want to be fussed over. Llamas aren’t into that.

To our surprise the article then announced that we have pigs. Well, we have guinea-pigs, but that’s as close as it gets.

I talked to our local tourist office about this imaginative article, but she simply shrugged and said it’s the French way of doing things. They don’t let a few facts stop a good story!


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