Fishing for Carp near Bergerac

Carp_fishing_near_bergeracI didn't realise that fishing was such a massive pastime until I moved to France but it is. One of the major things that fishermen have going for them is the space and no shortage of lakes and rivers.

Locally to us there are an awful lot of small irrigation reservoirs which are stocked with large Carp which are introduced to help clean the lakes up.

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Fuel protests start to cripple France

We are just about to head off into Villeneuve to buy a few bits, however, the blockades by French (now Belgian and Spanish) fishermen of the fuel depots is having effects countrywide with fuel running out (or at least being restricted) at the pumps and we are not sure if we can fill up. We are hearing reports of panic buying with French locals taking cans into the garages before the situation escalated and now, unless fuel supplies are allowed to get to the service stations it looks as though France will literally grind to a standstill.

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Moving the blog into the background

BlankI have been making a few changes to our blog in the last week or so. The aim is to have the site revamped and ready to go for the new holiday season.

With this in mind, and collating feedback from guests who stayed with us over the summer, we are going to make the site more of an information site for potential guests who are looking for a holiday.

Don't worry, for all of you who like to take a peek at all of the cock ups I make, the blog will still be running in the background with all of the historical information about our build and the trials and tribulations about living in France.

You will either have to bookmark the site so that you land directly on the blog or use the sidebar navigation which will be labelled 'Blog' (funny enough).

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My other blogging hat

Ljscreen I do love to ramble on a bit and I have always wanted to write. But, I think I had attention deficit disorder at school, my Dad called it the fidgets, and I could not concentrate for long enough. I do not claim to be Shakespeare but I am learning a lot of things that I need to from a blogging perspective. Craig McGinty, who I was introduced to soon after we arrived in France, is such an inspiration and fantastic help. In fact, Craig has been instrumental in my blogging from the day I switched from an expensive website, which was run by a company who were screwing me for as much as they could, to Blogger and then Typepad.

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The finest prune oven in France

Prune_oven_004 have something to show you that has really excited me (yes I know is is a sign of ageing and sadness). Donna and I have had a fabulous weekend in the company of Clive and Hillary who were our neighbours and very close friends in Oakhanger.

Clive, together with David and James, helped us move our worldly possessions over to Le Mas back in September 2004 (yes thats over three years now).

We spent some time showing them around and to finish off on the day before dropping them off at Bergerac airport for their flight back to Stanstead we went on a relaxing walk with the dogs before lunch.

I wont talk about Cookie chasing Mr Bertrands chickens although I am pleased to say she did not eat any.

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The endless summer

Experiment_011 Evening everyone, I am so sorry not to have posted for ages. It is not that I am not interested in updating the blog but it is more a case of not knowing what to say.

We are in a bit of a vacuum really. I have done all that I can do in the barn but we await two important tasks, both by third parties, to be done before we can really run in for the final leg.

We have ordered some hand finished terracotta tiles for the floor. Three weeks have just passed (we were promised in two) so Donna has called today to be told that they will be delivered tomorrow (8th Nov).

The other is the preparation and creation of the triple panel French doors to fill the old bar entrance.

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The hunter becomes the hunted

It is Sunday and yes it is another hunting day for the locals. Although we do not have the organised Chasse through today (you know, the ones with the orange hats) we are getting the odd hunter with his dog walking past.

I have no idea how they ever catch anything though because they are not exactly using stealth as a tactic.

Take a look at this unfortunate hunter who finds himself becoming the hunted. I cannot make it out exactly if he was killed during this encounter but he sure has taken a beating.

I have heard about the Boar or Sanglier getting wild when injured and cornered but never seen anything like this one.

Can I use a well in France?

Well_009 Some where down the line between us and Monflanquin, SAUR (Société d'Aménagement Urbain et Rural = Company for Urban and Rural Development) we have been working on the water pipes which means that for the last two days we have been without a water supply.

This isn't in itself a great problem because they turned us off at 9.30 after breakfast and restored the supply just before lunch. The only thing is that they didn't notify us of any works in advance.

I had mixed up a barrow load of mortar this morning to finalise the piers but had not added the water and when I turned on the tap nothing came out.

Luckily for us we have a well. You have a right to use as much water as you like from a well you own and this included unlimited use on vegetables too.

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Somewhere over the Rainbow

It has been hot here for the last two weeks or so. Last Wednesday, after a humid day we had a single rain shower which lasted for about 10 minutes. The sun remained out during the brief squall and with it came the inevitable rainbow.

I don't think you will get the full effect in this photo but the whole of the Pigeonnaire is perfectly framed by a very strong rainbow.

Sun_035 Blow me down the very next evening, the same thing happened.
It must be an omen! I must check the lottery numbers.

Unfortunately, these are low quality photographs but click on it and it will enlarge in a new pane.


Using Google Calendars

A little while back I switched to Availcheck Calendars after Rentcalendar seemed to stop trading.

Unfortunately, Availcheck, the free version anyway, will block calendar access after 78 hits per month which wasn't that cool really because out of the hits we get every day, the calendar seems to be one of the popular places to check out.

I then switched to Google Calendars and I must say that they are really good. However, one very interesting point that is worth a mention is the searchability.

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