The back story. Last December, I met Gaston and les girls, a flock belonging to our Airstream-owning friends Perry and Coline. I asked them what happened to the fleeces. They said they gave them away to be used as insulation. I asked if I could have one.
Long story short. After yesterday's cricket match, Coline took me over to a giant, plastic-covered mound and pulled out Gaston's fleece which is dark and enormous (not unlike Gaston himself). We picked another soft, paler one for a friend who is also along on this project. Total beginners at this, she and I plan to wash, card, spin and--in my case--knit. Right now, Gaston's fleece is tied up in a very large black plastic bag. Information on-line suggests using washing-up liquid and a washing machine but I don't think it means the diminutive French washing machines which accommodate a few pairs of socks but not much more. If it came to a stand-off between Gaston and our Zanussi, I wouldn't bet money on the Zanussi.
I'll keep you posted.