Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Work, Life and My French Folly....update

Courtsey of Warrenski, flikr
I've started the day by eating a box of Lindt linor chocolate truffles - not an auspicious pastime. My visions of regaining my svelte figure are rapidly fading as the pressures of work increase and my work-life balance starts to resemble the letter "L". All work (professional and domestic), no life - the lot of a working mother and wife. I am trying to redress this imbalance, but with little success.
My professional commitments demand that I complete of work during the weekend and on weeknights. And dealing with the public always has unexpected hazards.
I go through phases of employing cleaners who initially manage to impress, but invariably start to take short cuts after gaining my confidence.
The local ironing lady - who will probably be sainted by the ladies of Brighton - insists on using spray starch, which causes members of my family to develop rashes - quite antisocial en masse.
My Scottish heritage prevents me from paying $40 plus per hour for a gardener. Besides, I love getting my hands in the dirt and psychologically don't want to relinquish this task - my green meditation. But it does add to my "to do" list.
A ceiling in My French Folly.
Then there're the renovations of My French Folly to attend to - a self-imposed pressure that has been amplified beyond my expectations by employing (and paying) a project manager who confuses fiction with fact and has a propensity to "go to ground" for months on end. I am constantly amazed by his creative excuses and absolute gall. However, for the first time since purchasing the house in France there is a glimmer of hope that we may be able to be in residence this June, albeit with the work unfinished. I am no longer dealing with the project manager but his newly appointed offsider - a man of action! Within 2 weeks an army of artisans has produced quotes for the renovation work. When they can actually start to put their skills into action has yet to be determined, but at least something is happening at our much neglected maison française.
This unexpected, but long awaited activity has me dreaming of France - with eyes closed and open - decorating rooms that I have yet to see, with copper pots, exquisite pieces of furniture and other authentic French items that I've picked up - for pittance - from brocantes in quaint villages and antique shops that I happen to chance upon while roaming the French countryside. If only dreams (shamefully, quite  selfish) came true............


French Girl in Seattle said...

My Gosh! This was like reading an update from Peter Mayle... ;-) I can see that you were not kidding when you wrote you had a lot on your plate on my blog recently. Your French folly will certainly be worth it, in the end, even if you have to deal with all that headache right now. Anyone tackling a house remodel - in their own country, and even more so abroad - has my heartfelt admiration! Courage, courage. Veronique (French Girl in Seattle)

That's Not My Age said...

How exciting! I like the sound of the project manager's side-kick.

I thought by the time I reached my middle years, my life would be sorted but still haven't got the balance right.

Lost in Provence said...

So happy to hear that something, anything, is happening for your French Folly!! I swear, Remi and I need to head up to Lyon--he'll scare them into action!
Don't forget to breathe,

Ann said...

I am so happy that at least the French home has started on its road to live-ability!

I totally understand about the lack of time. I am always torn in so many directions at once. Right now I am glad for our health. As my son just told me, just chip away a little each day.

Thinking positively...

French Basketeer.com said...

Courage! And keep after that sidekick!

Genie -- Paris and Beyond said...

Although it may seem overwhelming it does sound that you are making progress. As you have discovered, often it is not that you personally attend to each detail but to find the right person(s) to keep it moving. "Side-Kick" h a better chance of helping you with his expertise and energy level.

Hang on to your dreams and each day will get you closer to that reality. To help out, I'll be dreaming of you and your family beautifully ensconced in your maison française.


LaPouyette said...

That looks like seeing a glimps of light at the end of the tunnel????

So pleased to hear that you stopped with this English cruck/cowboy or whatsoever!

And how about to have a team of artisans! My only strong suggestion - do not pay any centime in advance. You could also check them out either via your mairie or the Chambre de Commerce. Make sure that they all are proper registered.
Good luck, my Dear!
Oh, I wish so much that your dream comes true!

And - let's dream and 'weaving' about the interior.....


LaPouyette said...

And - forgotten to say - take another piece of Lindt - or two! It's pure energy!!!!

Virginia said...

OH I'm now dreaming of your d ream in France. I can't wait to hear each new adventure . Dream on!

The enchanted home said...

Love how you began your day....my kind of gal:) No worries i polished off my sons valentines day box of candy while hes away skiing.....don't know how I am going to break it to him, but likely he won't be surprised...lol!
Your post has ME dreaming...and speaking of things coming true...guess what you won the signed Segeto book!! Viist me for details and please send over info when you can, congrats!!

my french dream said...

Hello from your newest follower. Just popped over from Jo's blog @Eliza's.
Looking forward to hearing about your French folly - we are also renovating a little barn in France (it seems to take forever).
Have a good weekend.

Sacha x

Carla said...

You made me feel a little better about myself knowing I am not the only one who has inhaled a tub of chocolate in the last week!!
The renovation sounds like it could be starting to happen...good luck what a fabulous project.
Carla x