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Gettin’ Back to Work

Dude and I have been taking a bit of a break when it comes to the renovation of our house. We wanted to enjoy the spring weather, save a bit of money and plus, we were just plain sick of working on the house!

It’s been a nice couple of months and we would have taken a few more weeks off but this past weekend we were forced by nature to start up the work again.

Last weekend it decided to rain every evening in our village for four evenings straight. I’m not talking a few raindrops here and there, I’m talking a torrential downpour for about 45 minutes and then it would clear out like it never happened. Then the next morning we would wake to a beautiful blue sky and sunny day. Come 7pm though, look out, the storm would show up again. It was crazy! There would be thunder, lightning and we even had hail one evening!

After the third day of this, guess what??! Our brand new roof that we just had done in February started to leak around the roof window and the leak was running down to the far edge of the house and water was seeping through one of the bedroom walls! We called out the company who did the roof and they came out on Tuesday morning to assess the damage. They are suppose to come back sometime in June to fix the leak. Good thing we didn’t paint the top floor, yet!

Another big surprise was this.

 

Now, I didn’t buy a house with a pool, but voila, I now had one in my yard over the weekend. Dude and I took the photos to the Maire and they are sending someone out to the house because even though part of the problem is that our lot is flat with no proper drainage, the other problem we encountered is that even if we did have proper drainage, all the water would pool high at the front gate because the city never put in a brow ditch or drainage system in the street.

So, sometime next week the service technique of our town is going to show up so they can survey the street and put in a drainage system and fix the street since it is at a higher level than our terrain. This is also a contributing factor in the water pooling. In the meantime, Dude and I are digging some trenches in the yard to put in proper drainage. That’s a job! Confession time-he is doing most of the work, I am only the helper.

Tomorrow we are off to the store to go buy drainage pipe to lie in the trenches and at least start getting the drainage system in place before the service technique shows up. The Maire said we had to show that we were in the process of fixing the area within our property line before the city will do their part.

The other thing we did on Wednesday morning was to go and visit a rock query that is near our village. Once the drainage system is in place we are going to re-gravel the garden and entire entry way to our property. We found some red marble rock and ordered 3 tons of that for the garden area and then ordered some cheaper gravel for the entry way. In all we have 10 tons of gravel coming to our house next Wednesday!

So between trench digging, laying drainage pipe and re-graveling our terrain, it’s going to be a busy week.

This evening we met our new neighbor who bought the house to us on the right. She happened to drive up as we were trench digging and I wanted to let her know that a truck was coming next week to drop the 10 tons of gravel and it was going to block her gate for a day or two. It turns out she speaks English! Apparently she was married to an Englishman so she speaks it very well. Dude and I ended up chatting with her for about an hour. She just got the keys to her house yesterday and came by to drop stuff off. She gave us the tour of the house and guess what??!! She has a crumbling fixer-upper like us! Big surprise!!! We will both be crying on each other’s shoulders throughout all the work 🙂

She also happens to be an artist and showed us a few of her paintings. She has some gorgeous ones of the region with villages off in the distance and surrounded by lavender fields. Dude and I were very impressed.

After show and tell of her house, we showed and telled ours and guess what??!! She said she almost bought our house when it was for sale! Yup! Can you believe it!! Her kids told her it was too big for one person so she declined, but she did say that she had loved it when she first saw it. 🙂

Seeing that she got her own fixer upper (one half the size) with a large garden, she made out and she can see our garden from some of her windows so she seemed happy. We told her she could come and visit any time.

Dude was super happy cuz he kept thinking that some developer would buy that house and make a huge ugly group of apartments and then we would up and die. Seems that our lives have been spared and we now have a nice neighbor, which is always a plus.

Well, time to hit the hay. I have to get to some ditch digging manana!

 

Spring Is In The Air (Even If The Weather Doesn’t Want To Cooperate)

Yesterday evening Tinki and I went for a walk for about an hour. It was good to get out and enjoy the extra daylight we have now. The trees and flowers continue to bloom and the weather has warmed up from a few months ago, but it’s still not up to par for me. I would like for it to get just a tad bit warmer. I don’t like to be freezing cold and I don’t like to be burning up either which is one of the reasons why spring is my favorite season. That and all the flowers and trees blooming, of course! Usually the weather is just right for me, but this spring I feel like I’m getting gypped. All the nice days were in March and once April rolled around the good weather left us.

Over the last couple weeks the wind has continued to blow and it’s been cloudy most days. Even when we have reached decent temperatures during the day, the evening gets pretty cold in my village when the sun goes down.

As Tinki and I took off for our outing, it was still warm enough to not have to wear a jacket, but by the time we returned home, the wind had kicked up again pretty strong and it was cold. Good thing we decided to bring our jackets with us.

We only lasted for an hour before it got too cold and windy, but that was long enough to snap some photos of the most recent blooms.

 

 

Even He’s Cold

As the wave of cold continues across Europe we are bound to see more and more photos of snow covered cars and houses, people bundled up like Eskimos, frozen lakes and rivers and ice covered cliffs.

Provence, though definitely not as cold as some of the other regions of Europe, has been touch by the cold spell, nonetheless. I read and watch the news daily for any sign of a power outage (which has happened in the department I live in), icy road warnings or more snow to come. Some of the photos I have seen have been incredible, some sad, and some beautiful and breathtaking.

When reading this morning about the current state of the weather in Europe, I came across this photo. It was one that made me laugh and I just had to share it.

I think he even has a look of distress on his face. I love his icy beard and his furrowed brow. His sad face seems to give off the impression that even he is cold and has had enough of this weather.

For some interesting fun facts about Gargoyles, head on over to my friend Corey’s blog at A French Frye In Paris. He’ll let you in on the lowdown of these famous creatures.

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