Tuesday, 13 April 2010

We finally made it...

And breath! I feel like this is the first time I’ve had to actually sit at the computer in front of my fire (my French fire) and collect my thoughts.

We made it to France and arrived at our new house on Thursday 4th March 2010, gerbils and all! The car was packed to bursting and 540 odd miles is not too comfortable in a 3 door car with 2 gerbils and everything but the kitchen sink!

Part of me feels like we have been just about keeping our heads above water since we arrived, staggering from one calamity to the next! They tell me its character building and as each one gets further away we start to see the funny side!

We have survived a gas leak on our first day, 2 very confusing phone conversations to a very French gas company resulting in gas man and fixed leak! Followed closely by the great escape, one minute the gerbils were both happily doing gerbil things in their house, the next they were no where to be found! Two days later and various home made gerbil ‘traps’ and we had coaxed both of them out from behind the fireplace where they had created a warm and cosy home!

Mid march saw the arrival of a new addition to our family.

This is Louis and he is 10 months old. He came to us from a rescue centre. He had been found on the side of the road, nothing more than a scrap of bones with a crushed paw. He was so timid and very scared of everything. It took us nearly 30 minutes to just get him out of the car.

We think that he has been severely mistreated and beaten, he is terrified of men and shakes uncontrollably when he meets new people. He does like to steal socks and has taken to following me around like my shadow. It will take lots of time and patience but he is a sweet little dog with a lovely nature who just needs lots of love and cuddles!

Along with our beautiful house, we have 4 cottages (gites) that we will let out to holiday makers. We began the task of renovating them almost as soon as we arrived and I think we are starting to make progress, although it has proved too much some some!

The previous owner had some very weird ideas when it came to interior decoration, I sometimes find it hard to stop the bad words escaping from my lips when painting the 6th coat of paint to cover up neon orange walls or luminous green furniture!

Our first paying guests arrive on 11th May so we are working to a tight schedule. We have had lots of help and support from our wonderful families though, my parents have been out twice with big van loads of things and ‘The Other Half’s’ mum and partner were with us last week lending a helping hand with building stud walling and making curtains.

So even though I have the odd homesick day and sometimes things seem to get on top of me, sitting in the garden on a sunny evening with my man and my dog next to me makes it all worth while and I know how very very lucky I am.