After 14 days of howling gales and storms that would put English weather to shame, I turned to look through the salon window and shouted “will you please give it a rest” to which the weather gods, in their ivory towers, said a resolute “Non”.
Two weeks of struggling to and from the barn, laden with logs for the fire to give me a vestige of respite from the present inclemency, was threatening enough to make anyone raise their voice to the heavens in search of someone, anyone, to hear the cry of the afflicted.
Having duly served my requisite time of isolation on entering France, (whether or not Covid-19 rules stated that one should), being trapped and restrained inside four walls by bad weather when there are plenty of outside chores waiting my attention, was not something I had signed up for in moving to warmer climes this far south of the British Isles.
Elsewhere noted, with the purchase of a can opener, I consoled myself with another tin of tuna and a slice of cake from my good friend Diana, whose thoughtful injection of finest alcoholic beverage to accompany lashings of festively adorned nuts and glacé cherries, kept the wolf from the door for many of the preceding days.
After the mad scramble to leave the UK, I guess this solace and forced internal retention is just deserts for the years that have led to my squeaking out before the door of Brexit was slammed unceremoniously behind me.
Giving credit to Charlotte who has worked tirelessly in the field of paperwork management and ensuring that I don’t lose the will to survive on more than one occasion, the hard-pressed woman of substance is now facing moving our home in Kent to temporary lodgings for the next six months or so, before being able to join me and survey the progress (or lack of) that I have been able to accomplish being left to my own devices.
And therein lies the issue. Because although I might well be hundreds of miles south of the aforementioned lady, with the addition of WiFi to our French abode, communication has not been an issue. So regular reports and updates are de rigueur ici.
Mais, ce n’est pas un problème car je suis capable d’effectuer à la place de nombreuses tâches à l’intérieur de la maison…
This has all had the effect of keeping Charlotte happy with the progress even though I am chomping at the bit to get outside and start making l’extérieur a more pleasant place to be.
All best plans or projects need a list and ours extends over several pages as well you might believe. Purchasing in France can be tricky unless you have a wealth of knowledge and money of which we had neither at the commencement of our plan. With the following years came the knowledge, but the finances were and will always be on a shoestring. Financial affluence is not quite the same as financial solvency and as we fall into the latter bracket, all plans have to be rigorously examined, measured by rule and all funds squared away to ensure they fall within our attainment. Any deviation from this strict path of propriety, would undoubtedly result in us creating a risable folly en France. Not something either of us would wish.
So, 14 days in France and what do I have to show for myself?
I’ve lost count of the rewired plugs to EU two pin standard. The only item not to sport a new plug is the Christmas tree which is still using an adapter. I’ve hung pictures and fitted a new shelf in the library (which sounds quite ostentatious until you realise it’s the space at the top of the stairs where you can sit and read….the landing). I have shortened all the curtain poles so that curtains can be drawn without catching on the overhanging section. A wall in our main bedroom has been painted, twice. The lighting in the bathroom has been changed from bare bulbs hanging on wires from the ceiling to having proper lights mounted.
Aside from the above, a myriad of spiders and flies that had chosen our home to crawl into during the time we have been away, in the hopes of surviving the winter have been ‘dealt with’ and turfed rather unceremoniously back into the spume and wave of Storm Bella!
Bon courage et bon voyage mes petits amis. This journey has only just begun so updates will follow in due course as we lumber down life’s rich tapestry path.
Carry on regardless