Thursday, 1 March 2012

Ma Vie Française

We spent an idyllic few
weeks one summer at this 

home in Provence.
My French Life continues to be manic - like an amusement park ride that you willingly take, with great excitement and anticipation only to realise that despite all the promise that it offered before you strapped yourself into the seat, it is not quite what you imagined. 
After a few circuits of the course your emotions are stretched to the point that just you want to stop the ride, but of course you can't until the whole unpleasant journey ends….. in its own time. The more exciting sections of the voyage are eclipsed by its treacherous twists and turns. Your stomach becomes knotted.  Berating yourself for electing to take and pay for this unpleasant experience, silent words are said in hope that the journey instantly halts and you survive it with your dignity intact.
After seemingly forever,  the ride is over.  You walk away grateful for being “in one piece” ………. then a little voice in your head  declares.......... "that wasn't so terrible after all, I think I’ll do it again next year"!

The view from the pool house across to Bonnieux.

When it comes to renovating My French Folly, I'm at the stage of rebuking my myself, with knots in my stomach, wishing for the journey to finish tout de suite ……… with ma maison française et moi, intact and functional. I can confidently say that I won't be  taking this ride again.

My vision has morphed into a French farce in the hands of the U.K. company which is supposedly managing the project. 
Reports from France  last week spoke of action and promise. This week - nothing.

Breakfasts were eaten on the terrace.......... very slowly.

Today is the first of March and I depart for France in June.  My man on the ground in Burgundy has had the house keys for 14 months, and the house still resembles those of its birth date – 1750. Living like an 18th century woman is just not me.
It's at times like this that I seek solace perusing my photos of France ..........dreaming of places at which I have stayed ..........  imagining the scents of summer filling my nostrils and the fruits of le terroir satiating my appetite. Thank goodness for dreams…..

A few months after we left this beautiful home it was used as a film set.


la fourchette said...

Oh I can soooo relate to that ride...this is my eighth year and the speed at which those treacherous twists and turns are hitting has slowed. whew!

Too bad about your 'man on the ground'. A friend of mine in Amsterdam is a project manager and now working in the south of France. An American, he's lived in Europe and specializes in work in the south of France. A more trustworthy individual would be hard to find. If you need a consult, let me know.

Elizabeth Eiffel said...

Thanks for the support Leslie - it's heartening to hear that I'm not the only person who has taken this ride!. I have contracted my "man on the ground" to project manage the renovations to the ground floor only, so your contact may be very useful in the future!
Bon weekend.

Ann said...

Beyond frustration at this point! I cannot even imagine. That said, I wish I could sneak away and visit you in the 1750 home. We could make it work!

French Girl in Seattle said...

Anyone undertaking such a Herculean task deserves all my admiration, but to undertake said task while living thousands of miles away, in a different country, well... that is simply in-cro-ya-ble! I bet once you arrive there, things should speed up a bit. Keep the goal in sight, take a deep breath, and visualize your French folly when it is all over... ;-) Veronique (French Girl in Seattle)

French said...

Hang on, hang in will all be worth it!! I love the images!

Burlap Luxe said...

I am with French basketeer she said it all :)
Thank you for the beautiful posted photo's breathtaking.

Thank you for all the beauty you spread while taking the time to visit me! best of all the encouraging comments that mean alot to me coming from you.


Laura Ingalls Gunn said...

Oh I see a magazine column in your future! :)

What a lovely home.

Thank you SO very much for your prayers my friend.

Jo Farmer said...

So sorry about the man on the ground, I hear this all too often. My husband and I will be embarking on our own restoration later this year but we will be doing it ourselves (albeit, slowly) as we both have a lot of experience in the building industry... We will be there sometime in April/May so if you need someone to check things out for you, drop me a line.

BTW, your name was first out of the hat for my little GIVEAWAY so please email me your address and the pillow you would like most.

Thanks for your support and for joining in the fun.
Jo xx

manon 21 said...

Bonnieux est un village que j'aime beaucoup,pas loin de ma maison de campagne.



Karena said...

You will be so pleased with this dream of a home; I hope you will let Andrea and others "in the know" give you the help and encouragement to keep going!!

Art by Karena

Genie -- Paris and Beyond said...

For many of us, we drool at your dreams and I hope that you know that we are all behind you, pulling for the progress that helps you keep the goal in mind. May your dreams and ideas keep you uplifted, mon amie.


Kerri said...

I love your pictures!!! Thanks for visiting my blog. I am posting from the new blog as I wont be using the other blog much anymore. I do have my dog show blog, but dont use it often. Anyway, I think this is a lovely home :)


Virginia said...

Oh I have no doubts that your dream will be realized. And that terrace shot took my breath.