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And so it goes on!

October 30, 2011

Week three of the Great Renovation dawned with much demolition work in the bathroom, the arrival of all the new bathroom fittings and Marc beginning to start the rebuilding. Getting the old tile off the bathroom was a major task and resulted in quite a lot of collateral damage to the wall plaster. Consequently the walls were lined with “green board” a damp-resistant form of plasterboard. Opening up the floor for the toilet drain revealed the floor is 27cm (10.75”) thick! – took some serious hammering. Unlike in the US, there are no individual shut-offs on the pipes for the sink, bath or toilet, this will be corrected as shutting off the whole house to change a tap washer is just not acceptable. We hit another snag as we wanted to put hand basins in the toilets (never understood the lack of these) but there just isn’t room in the downstairs one. OK, they make a combined WC and hand basin – BUT the drain is horizontal and the existing one is vertical 😦   So, after much research we are going to put in a standard WC and we have found a tank-top basin that fits. That’s a future job.









June and I continued with the wallpaper removal, a really nasty task as it is all very old and dirty and in places really stuck hard. The ceilings are a real pain 😦 It is amazing how many hairline cracks are in the walls, looks like a shattered eggshell when wet. We were also joined on Thursday and Friday by Marc’s wife Sylvie who came to lend a hand with this – a really generous offer we were glad to accept. So far we have removed all of the lobby area, stairwell (Marc on a long ladder), landing, upstairs bathroom and about one and a half bedrooms. Another few days should hopefully see this done and then we can concentrate on making enough of the house liveable – we plan on completing the bathroom, toilet, bedroom and getting the kitchen functioning.








We decided some time back that the tiny oven was just not what we needed so we have bought a micro-wave that will fit the old oven space and a new “piano de cuisson” which is a large, free-standing oven and cooktop combined. Marc set to and removed the old oven, the unit where the cooker is going and the work top. He couldn’t do the sink as (see above) there are no shut-offs for the taps. He has arranged for a plumber for next week to correct all this and make ready for new units. We still have some shopping to do for a new kitchen sink and a towel rail radiator for the bathroom.









Our new found friends and neighbours came calling a couple of times and he decided our old bath-tub was just what he needed as a trough for the cows – he took the sink and the bidet as well 🙂  It also appears they want to help sort out the rest of the trees at the back – apparently it was the old lady’s sons who were kicking up a fuss about who owned the trees; the farmer has offered to obtain a quote for removing them and will share the bill with us.

The heating oil was delivered on Monday so we have had hot water and heat ever since – it really has transformed the place and made working less tiring. We’re still commuting everyday – 25 minutes each way – and having to break off and go and find lunch. It’s very wearing and we’ll be glad when we finally get to move in, no matter how much “camping out” we will be doing.

On Friday, Marc became a grandfather so he & Sylvie are headed South for the weekend to see the new baby, they should be back on Tuesday. This coming week should see the plumbing sorted, tile laid and the rest of the wall paper removed. We can’t wait as we are both completely exhausted and really feeling the strain after having done very little for five months.

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