Georgie flew out here a week ago last Saturday and went back last Monday. Weather was a bit chilly and damp, but it cleared up last Saturday. Sunday was a scorcher with the temperature hitting 27 degrees. Georgie spent most of the day weeding and planting seeds and shrubs while I pruned the bottom hedge and sawed down a couple of ugly mini-trees out back. Also took the opportunity to do a couple of loads of washing and then hung it out to dry. Had a quick natter over the wall with neighbour Chantelle who said this is the week of change when nature hits top gear and all the plants and trees explode into action. It really was a splendid day and a perfect end to Georgie's week-long break. Shame she couldn't stay for another week because the weather's been marvellous - 26 degrees today and still climbing.
One of the many things we discussed during Georgie's brief visit was, inevitably, that old chestnut 'what are our plans for the future?' It would be an easy question to answer if we were rich, but we're not, so it's tricky. Personally, I couldn't give a monkey's about being skint, but Georgie, being the sensible one, is constantly worried about the prospect of poverty. However, despite this, she's thinking of resigning from her ridiculously low paid job in London and coming out here in June and going free-lance, armed with the latest hi-tech Apple computery thingys, then maybe returning to London for winter. Sounds good to me. After all, the winters out here are rubbish and this winter has been particularly long and challenging. The first snows arrived early last year in October and they've been off and on since then with the latest snow flurry being a couple of weeks ago. With spring now definitely in the air, I'm tempted to say that winter's finally over. However, having said that, it snowed a couple of years ago in May, so maybe we haven't seen the last of the stuff.
This meteorological inclemency was another topic we briefly discussed. Our thought was to maybe sell this house and maybe buy another locally at a lower land height where the winters don't bite so hard. Or maybe up north where it's nearer to England. Or maybe a bit further south where it's warmer in winter, such as the the Dordogne or Lot regions. Or maybe go for broke and do up the ruin at our barn property down near Beaulieu-sur-Dordogne. Trouble is, we can only guess what the cost of 'ruin' renovations would be - we may well get a clearer idea later this summer. Also, we can only guess what our present abode will sell for, if it sells at all - which is why we're planning to do it up a bit over summer in readiness for a possible attempt at selling next spring.
Anyways..., while Georgie was here, out of curiosity, we had a quick search of the internet for property prices in our Limousin region. Set a ceiling of 100,000 euros (about £92,000?) just to see if anything interesting turned up. Surprisingly, there were quite a few - mostly uninhabitable barns or pokey town boxes, but at least it showed that prices haven't dramatically increased over the last five years or so; if anything, they've decreased. Then, just as we were about to stop searching, we spotted an interesting cottage down near Tulle that triggered our curiosity (well, ahem, triggered mine!). Priced at just 66,000 euros with newly installed oil heating (luxury!) and still retaining a few original features (i.e. not yet totally ruined by crappy 'modernising'), I reckoned it deserved a closer look. As the weather was dull and grey and we fancied a day out, we contacted the agent and arranged to view it the following day.
To cut a long story short, the day after our visit, we contacted the agent and put in an offer of 56,000 euros. The next day he informed us that the vendor had received an offer of 64,000 euros via another agent which was progressing. However, the vendor has set a time limit of this coming Saturday for the purchasers to confirm that they are able to get a bank loan to purchase, otherwise we'll be given the 'go ahead' - unless, of course, some other buyer turns up. So, we're now waiting for a Saturday 'yay or nay' to proceed. Interesting, huh?
Besides all that, Georgie's asked for a photo of newly shorn Jock's face so she can show Donnie. Sounds simple. However, Jock flatly refuses to be photographed and turns away the moment a camera is shoved in his face. Caught him slightly unawares this morning though. Have also included a snap of the front door tulips that have really come on a treat in the last couple of days since Georgie departed.
A Winters's Harvest
1 week ago