Farewell Françoise

Today, the whole of France mourns Françoise Hardy

6/12/20241 min read

Today I wake to hear that Françoise Hardy has just died at the age of eighty. It is clear that not only do I feel very sad, but so does the whole of France, for over the next two hours of early morning music broadcast on 'France Musique,' I listen to nothing else but her sultry, sexy, lyrical voice. Thank you Françoise Hardy for being so instrumental in giving me a love of France

We first met in a coffee bar on the shores of lake Geneva. It was in the Spring of 1968 and I had come to this part of Switzerland to improve my French during my Easter holidays, along with a mixed group of teenagers from different parts of Britain. My 'A levels' were drawing ominously close, and my parents were right to feel concerned. We were hosted by various families , and I had found myself living above the local post office in Montreux Vevey, an exciting funicular ride up from the lake's shores. The view of the Alps from my bedroom window was amazing. But then everything was new and exciting. And so, when lessons for the day were over, we all ventured in to a café, and I was immediately seduced. The subdued lighting, strong smell of coffee and whiff of gitânes were a heady mix for this innocent English schoolgirl. And who was that singing from the juke box in the corner? It was none other than Françoise Hardy lamenting her loneliness as she walked the streets of Paris. At that precise moment I fell in love with all things French... a love affair that has lasted until this very day. Adieu Françoise...et merci pour tout!