25 February 2015



I arrived chez nous last weekend, very tired after a truly horrible journey which involved rain, hail, sleet, snow and a fifty minute hold-up due to a crash on the M1 which caused me to miss my train.


Just as I thought, there was plenty of mud chez nous.


The contractor turned up on Monday once the rain had stopped to begin digging the trench to take the electric cable to the gate.  While he was hard at work we went to Tours to choose some tiles for the new kitchen floor.  We dropped a note in the letter box of the mason giving all the details of our choice at teatime and headed home to cook a nice meal in our old kitchen for the last time.  And to use the dishwasher for the last time, too, as it was destined to be parked out of the way for a few weeks until the new kitchen is installed.


On Tuesday we began moving our things out of the kitchen cupboards and with our temporary kitchen not yet up and running we went to Descartes in search of a spot of lunch.  We chose to eat in a restaurant we have passed by many times before, called, I think, “Le Cherizy” and were in for a real treat.



It was very pleasant inside and for 13.50€ we had three very nicely presented courses.  Smoked salmon and avocado salad, steak and chips, and orange confit. 

mud6b mud6c mud6d

Excellent value and a most enjoyable experience so we will certainly be going there again.



Today we started the job of removing the old kitchen. I always had my suspicions that we might find unwanted visitors lurking behind the units once we started taking them out.  When we moved in there were mouse traps and mouse droppings on top of the wall cabinets. 

Sure enough, a huge mouse nest was built in a hole in the wall just behind the cupboards.


With the wall cupboards out of the way, the worktops can be removed, hopefully in one piece and, along with the old cooker and hood, will be on their way to a new home tomorrow.  We don’t like them but always felt that somebody else would be able to make good use of them – a much better option than simply taking them to the tip.


Unfortunately the wet weather means that we can’t have our new drive for a while.  Our window of opportunity of fine weather has been and gone.  The contractor has filled in the trench and removed the roundabout that was in the middle of the drive then he’s off on holiday for a week so we are left to live with the mud and have no real idea when he’ll be back to finish the job.  It all depends on the weather.

The good news is that the mason has already ordered our tiles and, because of the wet weather, might be able to start the kitchen floor at the end of next week.  So the rain that has put the kibosh on our drive might have worked in our favour in another respect – the mason can’t get on with his huge list of outdoor jobs so can fill in with our indoor one.  Fingers crossed!


  1. Looks like things are progressing which is good news.

  2. How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.
    Bon courage...

  3. "then he’s off on holiday for a week".....
    Ah, good some nice dry weather is coming up!!

    That restaurant looks wonderful...
    Henri has really got to do something about Grandma!!
    There is some chocolate gnasher tart waiting for you here...
    and some bread pudding Anglais style...

    1. Many apologies... Pauline decided that the tart was too dry to offer a friend...
      and served it up... it wasn't as nice as the first night... the chocolate g'nash had dried out a bit too much.... and it had curled up at the tip... a bit like a British Railways Refreshments Car sandwich...
      but we can probably let you have some eggs to compensate.

    2. Some eggs would be very welcome......I'll be round tomorrow........

  4. Once the mice have moved out, you'll have the place to yourselves - and Lulu and Daisy of course. I'm sure that delicious looking meal made up for alle the hardship you're going through. I kind of liked that roundabout, but I guess it's easier this way. Take care and good luck with the weather.

  5. At least the poor weather set back on the drive way has opened up the opportunity for the kitchen floor. Will the UK kitchen supplier deliver to France or do you have to arrange your own transport? That lunch looks delicious - I love avocado salad and the price point is excellent - especially with the euro exchange rate at 1.376 as of this morning!

    1. Craig, we have organised very reasonably priced delivery of the kitchen using a company recommended by the kitchen manufacturers, Magnet. They will deliver the units to the shipper's warehouse and it will arrive chez nous a few days later. That's the theory, anyway!
      That's an incredible exchange rate, almost what it was when we bought our first French house. Soon afterwards it plummeted to nearly 1.1 !!

  6. Good to see yet more progress and I hope the new kitchen floor is soon installed ready for the arrival of the new units.

  7. Good luck with the new kitchen, you will soon be able to enjoy the luxury of having it as you want it. The mud is a real pain, I cannot believe how much rain we have had this year, I am very thankfully we are n high ground, but even so the garden is saturated and yes very muddy.

    That looks like a meal that was very good value for money. Bon weekend Diane x

  8. Hoping that the kitchen remodel goes well, and the driveway dries out.

    1. This morning the drive looks like a water theme park. But a lot less fun.

  9. Ours looks like the battle of the bulge was fought across it with huge tanks. And they really are trying to be careful. I hope when the floor comes up there won't be anything underneath to be sorted out before the new floor goes down. Odds are you have tiles laid on concrete on top of tiles on lime mortar on top of soil. In our donkeyshed they patched the grenier floor (hayloft) with more tiles every time it sagged. There were four layers if I remember right. It didn't do anything for the beam underneath which was cracking and held up with a prop.

  10. Despite the mud -- welcome home :-)
    Squelchy out here too even though we're on a ridge. When they did the works at our place it looked like the battle of the Somme! Thankfully nature is tough and you'd never know it now.

  11. You are perhaps thinking "is there an end to all this?" but as one who has been there one day you will look back on these times and smile contentedly!

    PS can I use restaurant pics?

    1. Jim, I'm sure you're right but that stage seems a long way off at the moment!
      You may certainly use the restaurant pics. I have no hesitation in recommending it, although we have only been there once. I might not have been so pleased if the menu du jour was andouillette or something similar!