Bordeaux, France. Seventy-five years ago the Eskualdunen Biltzarra was created in Bordeaux, the Bordaleko Euskal Etxea. It took 20 years to acquired a clubhouse in downtown, and today it is completely renovated, with classrooms, a kitchen, tavern and two small apartments. At the rear is the “Plaza of the Basques,” where events are scheduled. Its members explain that the clubhouse is a wonderful heritage that they can enjoy because at the time of purchase, it didn’t have the real estate valuation that it has today.
The Club hosts many activities including Gau Eskola that teachers Basque online as well as in person. They also host sporting events with soccer and rugby teams as well as Basque pelota. They promote the classic Basque hobby of mendigoizaletasuna (mountaineering) and its group “Ibilki” organizes hikes both around the capital city, as well as in the Basque Country, Baiona is less than 200 kilometers away, and therefore close at hand for weekend outdoor outings.
Gastronomy is cultivated thanks to, among other proposals, the “Goxoki” cooking workshop, led by Mathilde Rosseti. There is a dance group and a remarkable choir, with a repertoire in Basque and performances and outings to other cities and choral events. And the “Kantuz,” group entertains at Basque club events as well as those of other associations. After lifting quarantine in France, the tavern has now reopened, Thursday to Saturday as a meeting place for members.
The Bordaleko Euskal Etxea participates throughout the year in other activities, such as European Heritage Day, the International Euskera Day, Basque Diaspora Day, or the Music Festival. At the Wine Festival, organized in Bordeaux every two years, the Basque club always participates with a stand and also joins the Korrika either by organizing a program in the city, or by booking kilometers and running in the Basque Country.
Due to COVID-19, the majority of its activities were cancelled in 2020, except for the Gau Eskola, that continued virtually. Basque club members hope that at the beginning of the new school year in September that they will be able to resume each activity as normally as possible.
Lan bikaina! Aupa lagunok!