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Making hay while the sun shines :)

May 26, 2012

It’s been a very eventful fortnight starting off with our decorator arriving, erecting scaffolding and ladders and starting on the roof. He sprayed with ‘anti-mousse’ to get rid of algae, pine needles and general dirt & detritus. Apparently this needs doing about every five years or the algae actually ‘eats’ the slates away by chemical reaction. Then he power washed the entire outside paintwork, filled and repaired cracks and flaking paintwork then put on an undercoat and two top coats. It now looks much better and next week he’s going to finish off all the black trim parts and the garden wall.

 The plumber also arrived to start installing the VMC – as usual there are problems, electrical access and getting the tubes through the attic. He also did a little electrical modification for me in the bathroom to move the light fitting. 

The supplier of skirting boards has gone out of business and I could not find a suitable alternative anywhere until I did an on-line search and found a specialist company inEngland. They are shipping 60 meters at a very reasonable price and very competitive with French prices. When that arrives we shall have to find someone to fit it as I do not want to buy a mitre saw for one job. Then we can get on with the decorations.

I finally bit the bullet (so to speak) and went to the dentist to have my baby tooth extracted. Apart from the injections (which I hate) it was a big non-event, tooth practically fell out and the anaesthetic wore off in 90 minutes. I’m not going to bother with a false one as it requires two root canals for the fixing (which does get covered by insurance) and an implant is a painful process and isn’t covered. Next appointment is for a cleaning in a weeks time.

Unfortunately in the middle of all this June got sick, bad cough and sneezing and I practically had to drag her to the doctors. He gave her a lecture – with her asthma any signs of coughs colds etc she needs urgent medication, so a set of prescriptions and off to the pharmacy. We also renewed our regular prescriptions to give us enough for the vacation trip in June. June is now recovered, thank heavens. 

For a week now the weather has been pretty bad, very windy some rain and quite cold. So when the roofer shows up on Saturday to fit the VMC vent we had leaks into the attic for an hour or so. He did a good job though and we discussed the Velux windows – just as well because I got the size wrong on the un-planning permission. This was easily handled (so far) by a quick email to the Mairie and the lady said she’d handle it. 

With the decorator carrying on outside we decided the time had come to start in on the bedrooms so we cleared one out completely and when the skirting board arrives we’ll do the bathroom and two bedrooms. The plumber came on Monday to connect up the VMC and finish off by adding the grilles and window vents for circulation. It’s amazing, the difference is really noticeable, we always had lingering cooking smells in the kitchen and the bathroom steamed up completely when taking a shower – all gone now.

 On Monday the fosse septique guy arrived to do a site survey – and we discovered that he actually doesn’t need the field for access. We do have a gateway at the top and he can use that. By a happy coincidence the farmers son who runs the farm, stopped by and had a chat about the access and the work on the field. When we told him that we may not need the access he was over the moon because it meant they could get on with the planting. We also had another discussion with the neighbours regarding the boundaries and now the surveyor is coming on Tuesday 29th to measure up and create the new lines. The neighbours are insisting on this – and on paying for it – as they do not want to take advantage of us, the exchange of land must be equal and fair.

 Well, it didn’t take long! Next day they were out mowing the field, in fact all the local farmers were as the weather had changed. We now have sunshine and it’s warm enough so the heating has finally shut off. Another trip to the clothes menders and to pick up the dry cleaning plus I collected the belts I had shortened – took 10cm off them and it cost €14, way less than the cost of one new belt.

 Our regular English gardener arrived and between the three of us we trimmed trees, got the daffodils removed, the grass cut, some plants moved, and the big camellia cut back. Weather is amazing – 22C and I got more sunburn in one day than I ever got in California!

 Thursday was my birthday and we celebrated by doing very little – minor chores, lunch out, quick trip to the dentist and dinner at home. French dentists are very different to Californians, none of this “four-handed” stuff. She cleaned my teeth with a miniature power washer, checked everything and pronounced the job done – in 10 minutes! Brilliant!

 By Friday the weather had turned really hot & humid and I chose to spend the morning power washing the patio. My power washer has always been a bit of a challenge to start if it doesn’t get used often and it’s been stored away for over a year so I was expecting trouble. Cleaned the plug, carburettor, filter, fresh petrol and ……. Zilch 😦   I resorted to using butane lighter gas and that finally did the trick and got it going. It took me three hours and several petrol refills and I’m still not done with it, it’s going to take a few cleanings to get it really done. At the end of this I was totally exhausted and decided a relaxing weekend is in order – and it’s the Monaco GP 🙂 

Then, on Friday eveing we are treated to a display of modern farming – they raked, rolled and wrapped and took away three fields worth of hay! In the middle of all this the farmer is rotovating the vegetable patach and his wife, the amazing Mme J. stopped by with her grand daughters to sell us school raffle tickets.  The other neighbours even had their robot mower going – I’d really like one of those!

 So here is a slideshow of the last two weeks

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David & June

One Comment leave one →
  1. January 9, 2015 16:06

    Nice Blog, thanks for sharing this kind of information.

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Mrs Niklasson's Adventures

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