9 June 2017

Vintage Citroën celebration, Épernay, Marne (51)

I won't even pretend to know anything about the history of cars, but the Citroën Dyane, created in 1967 and produced until 1983, is this year enjoying its fiftieth anniversary. The Dyane is based on the 2 CV (for 'deux chevaux' and familiarly known as the Deuche), which began life in 1948 and ended it in 1990. I particularly enjoyed the 'Barjos de la Deuche' ('Deuche nutters') club notices on some of the cars.

I once tried driving a Deuche when my former friend Daniel Daffos (from Labruguière, Tarn (81)), studying in Albi (also in the Tarn) when I was an assistant d'anglais at Lycée Rascol, came up to Leicester to visit us. I failed to get used to the very different gear lever, though. Still, it was an experience for us to have Daniel drive us back from the Midlands to the south-west of France in the trusty Deuche.

It was with some surprise, then, that we discovered a celebration of the Dyane's fiftieth birthday on the outskirts of Épernay: not just Dyanes but Deuches and other old Citroën models, their owners proudly displaying them in a field where they'd pitched tents and were enjoying the produce of the temporary stalls. If anyone happens to own one of these cars and objects, for whatever reason, to their registration number being displayed, then I will willingly blank it out. A selection of the cars on show:

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