After a few days of temperatures in the high 20’s and a pair of amorous kestrels spending all day screaming to other as they fly over the valley, we sincerely hope that spring is here. In fact yesterday was grey and drizzly, but no rain, no lovely green countryside.
I have been quite busy, actually doing a bit of business for estate agents drawing up floorplans and taking elevated photos. The only problem is that the really pricey properties that want this treatment are in the Dordogne, so I have had a few 4 hour round trips down that way – not exactly a penance! I have also tried doing some writing, although Peter Mayle probably need not worry. I have an article about (wait for it) floorplans and photography in April’s “French Property News”, with another article about Voutezac in June’s issue. I have interviewed some of the Brits who have set up successful businesses and hope to work this into another article.
At the start of March two of our friends from England, Rennie and Peter, came to stay for a few days. The weather was a bit variable, but I think they enjoyed themselves, and we certainly enjoyed having them.
As I have mentioned before I am a member of the Franco British Chamber of Commerce, and we had a very enjoyable meeting at a local hotel – brief talk on marketing, discussion, then networking over dinner. Very enjoyable.
A couple of weeks later we were given a couple of tickets for Brive Rugby Club – the FBCC get some as the club are a member. We saw an excellent game between Brive and La Rochelle – a real relegation dogfight which luckily Brive won. There was a crowd of about 11,000, and it was a very agreeable afternoon, with no animosity between the two sets of fans. There is lots of beer, some monstrous sandwiches, lots of passion and a good time is had by all!
With the nice weather we have stared exploring again. We have found an old slate mine outside a nearby town – they do guided tours and have demonstrations, sadly not actually open yet. The same applies to a Gallo-Roman site a bit further away – there are houses and remains of a theatre discovered in 2004, but not open until the summer. Now we both travel with cameras at the ready, so Judy has taken some really nice shots.
Last Sunday we went into Objat for the local market, and there was also the annual agricultural show. This is a real show – mostly lots of tractors and equipment for the farmers to drool over, and a huge marquee full of wonderful Limousin cattle, all just tied up and left quietly on their own. At the other end of the market is a livestock auction, and I have to say that in Carrefour in a couple of weeks there will be a large photo of “Champion so and so”, and lots of lovely joints of superb meat.
When we got home we were surprised to find a large group of people milling around outside our house. They turned out to be an Antiquarian Society from Argentat, a town about 40 miles South of us. Their day out was a tour of Voutezac. A few of the party were British, and when I offered to open up our cellars they passed this on. We then had about 30 keen historians looking around our 13th century cellar (and under cellar) and peering through our arrow slits. They seemed to enjoy themselves!