Sunday, 25 November 2012

la fermette

 We have had a project on the go for the past few months which I want to talk about today.

 After much deliberation and soul searching, we have bought a mini farm here in rural France.

Yes, I hear you all laughing and saying it doesn't suprise you..... my penchant for chickens and gardening, and Wayne's hankering for a big atelier means we had to do something like this eventually.

We actually made the decision a few months ago and started the paperwork to buy this place.  Unfortunately, in between we have had two deaths in the family which left us feeling unwilling to shout our good news out to the world.  To be honest, we have been devastated and mourning for most of the time and my last few posts have been vapid attempts to continue normal life.

For the past month we have been doing the necessary renovations ready to move in.  Tomorrow is the big day!

In fact we have been very fortunate to find a farmhouse in really good condition - a rarity in France where they are normally ramshackle ruins falling down around the owners ears!

The only real work we HAD to do before moving was to repaint (the 60's wallpaper was nightmare the interior and to redo the electrical wiring in the house.  Oh, and put in a kitchen because the existing kitchen comprised a sink and an oven..... no cupboards etc to be seen.

Poor Wayne has spent every weekend and quite a few extra days crawling around in roof spaces and trying to make sense of ancient wiring that is in 3phase.  Some of the wiring is so old it is the old tin plated wires covered in woven cotton!!! Scary!

It is going to take a bit of time to get everything restored and looking how we want it.  The walls are thick stone over a metre in width, and there are many layers of plaster going back over hundreds of years.  A challenge I am looking forward to immensely.

We have three outbuildings along with the house, surrounding a gravelled courtyard.  Then there is half a hectare of land as well.  A lovely chook pen and roost, clapiers (rabbit hutches) and pigeonnier.  The orchard has over 30 fruit trees planted, plus berries and grapes.

With this much land situated on the edge of a tiny village, surrounded by fields and forests and a pretty stream, it is idyllique.  Wayne can finally have his viewing platform for the telescopes, and I can have an enormous veggie garden as well as animals.

So, I sit here on the day before our move, surrounded by boxes - packed with the assistance of two good cats - and contemplate the next few weeks.  We will have no internet or tv, and there is no mobile phone reception in the village so no using my iphone to keep up to date either!  I am going to be in communication isolation!!
Photos and updates will be posted once internet restored and I have unpacked sufficiently to justify the time spent playing on the computer.