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Light at the end of the tunnel!

July 23, 2013

The grass is growing like weeds – in fact it is weeds – so Monday morning was mowing and weed wacking time. This is not made any easier by the smaller weed wacker refusing to run; it’ll start but won’t run and carburettor cleaner didn’t help. I was reduced to using my small rechargeable electric trimmer, a bit if a challenge given the battery provides about 10 minutes cutting time – I do have two batteries and some judicious timing and charging got the job done.  We spent the afternoon getting ready for our visitors; they were having issues with their sat nav and got a bit lost around Rennes but all was well in the end. We spent a long and pleasant evening discussing all sorts of news and stuff and basically surviving the heat/wind which would not let up enough for sitting outside.

On Tuesday we all went exploring into Vannes and to various bits of the towns and villages around the Golfe du Morbihan – mainly to show our friends what had persuaded us to move here originally. The fact we couldn’t afford any of those locations and ended up this side of Vannes is ancient history and a valuable lesson in house hunting and setting priorities – location is everything! We had a good lunch in a creperie close to the sea and then another pleasant evening at home. These two are off house hunting in France further south so we bid farewell on Wednesday morning, let’s hope they have better luck with the sat nav.

The rest of Wednesday was taken up by clearing up and relaxing, we are really not used to having other people around so much, we were quite tired. Thursday was the time for Junes check up with the rheumatologist and I think we were both hoping for good results and a visit maybe in six months; we got both BUT the doctor wants to continue with the monthly blood checks, some new vitamins and x-rays before the next visit in December. This means an appointment with our GP to coordinate the prescriptions and a call to set up the blood samples. At least all the results were good and this is just precautionary stuff so no big worries but we do seem to spend an inordinate amount of time on health issues since coming to France. We cannot complain about the system, the staff (professional and admin) are efficient, friendly and helpful, the care level is second to none and the whole system is minimal management and maximum patient care – the world could learn a lot from France on this.

Apart from a couple of enquiries on the internet the house sale is not progressing. One of our French agents called at 30 minutes notice (again!), sent a colleague who turned up an hour late and then the clients decided the house was much too big for them after spending less than five minutes here! We also talked with our local agent and she agreed that we might gain some exposure by having a ‘for sale’ sign outside – at least while its tourist season.

The weekend was pretty relaxing, great Test Match cricket even if we only get to watch the highlights and we made good use of the BBQ. Sitting outside is a bit of a problem, I resorted to tying a rope to the top of the shade umbrella to combat the wind – only partially successful. The wind made it quite unbearable at times but the forecast says it will be decreasing soon – I hope so but the temperatures are high (31 on Monday) and projected to remain high for a week or more. Everyone say this is unusual – in fact the temperatures on the French weather map are the same from the Channel to the Mediterranean and everywhere in between. It is numerically cooler than California but it doesn’t feel it and cutting the grass on Monday was a tad exhausting.


I made our doctors appointment for Tuesday and as per usual he spent almost an hour with us with very thorough check-ups and June’s new prescriptions. I have also got to have an “echographie” as my digestive problem (or possible hernia) is still recurring – this is set for July 31st – and our doctor is on vacation for two weeks so I continue with the treatments he gave me. At least he doesn’t believe it is urgent!

One of the Internet enquiries telephoned as asked for an appointment to see the house, we agreed to 2:00pm and planned accordingly – then she called again after we got home from the doctors and asked to change the appointment to 7:30pm! They arrived at 7:30 with their two young sons and spent well over an hour with us. They said they were very impressed and what they needed was a house to move into immediately – was there any way we could leave and rent it to them during the legal formalities. Our answer was that if the legal eagles could protect our interests we could discuss it.

Malcolm the gardener did come this week but the weather was so hot that after four hours he had enough but he did get a lot done and we are keeping the place in reasonable shape. The weather is weird, the normal West to East flow has reversed and we are getting strong winds and heat. Sitting outside is still a problem and cooking creates even more heat! Still we have had a couple of BBQ’s and thoroughly enjoyed them.

Friday was even hotter and uncomfortable and we finally settled down as the evening cooled to watch the cricket highlights, accompanied by rain and thunder outside. Then we got an almighty lightning flash and all the electrics went off – with England having a monumental day at about 97 for 7. It was obvious it was not a specific problem to our house or even street, it took EDF until 12:30pm on Saturday to fix it. At least we still had the cricket recording to watch in the evening plus the next day’s play.

The weather got even hotter over the weekend and we were reduced to quick cooking outside and then diving back indoors to eat. Then we got a request from the Tuesday visitors to come back on Saturday for a second visit. They stayed another hour at least and then made us an offer which was substantially lower than our asking price but they are cash buyers and very keen to move quickly. The rental idea was never mentioned again. We promised them an answer by Monday.

Sunday was spent in much soul-searching and discussions about the pros and cons of accepting or rejecting the offer. We also contacted June’s ex flat mate and Maid of Honour at our wedding and happily this resulted in an offer to move there temporarily so we could go rental hunting. This will be really good for June so we decided to accept the offer and we and they have already started the ball rolling with the notaires. In fact, as I was out shopping just now for bread, the notaire called and is already working on the compromis with the buyers in his office!

We could be on our way!


David & June

6 Comments leave one →
  1. July 23, 2013 13:02

    OMG – it may finally be happening for you. I was a real estate agent in Florida for about 20 mins. and the one thing I learned was that in a tough market your first offer will be your best offer. I hope it all works out as you want and you find something suitable to rent while house hunting in UK. You are right about the weather – soooo bloody hot here too and like you NO pool so indoors is the place to be. Happy for you both! Jo

    • July 23, 2013 13:17

      Thanks Jo, just got the date for the compromis from the notaire – 2nd August 🙂
      Really miss the pool as well, can’t have everything 🙂

  2. Michelle permalink
    July 28, 2013 18:42

    I’m just a random person who has been following your blog for awhile. I just wanted to say, “Congrats!”

  3. July 31, 2013 10:57

    that is fantastic news for you both, thoughI will really miss you on the blog, you’ll have to keep it up with an English version.
    good luck with the sale, 🙂

    • July 31, 2013 11:14

      Thanks Jenny & John, glad you are enjoying the holiday. Maybe an English version of the blog – we’ll see

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