Living and Building a home in the heart of France
29th November 2005
The end in sight
Sanding the ceiling.... not easy, not pleasant, not satisfying, but at least it's done now.* Except for the highest part of the 'grand volume' which isn't a good idea for someone nervous of heights on a wobbly scaffold.
*at least we thought so...
The men applied plaster over the joins
between boards rather more than just within the tapered edges. The resulting bulges are impossible to sand down to make the walls completely flat. I want to see if paint will make the joins invisible, so I started in bedroom 1. This is only the first watered-down coat of white, but it looks hopeful.
Well, it's now just
until the end of January, when Maison Provinciale are contracted to finish building our house.
Or maybe it'll be the middle of February, because of an official two-week delay caused by bad weather last February (even though they hadn't started it then). But that's not quite the same as the move-in date.
This will also allow us time to work through the ever-growing list of finishing tasks, such as interior painting, building a kitchen from the Ikea units currently stored in our barn, putting up curtain poles, laying wood floors in both bedrooms.... and lots and lots of SHOPPING!
There's a plan in this village, just as in the rest of France, to bring the drainage systems up to 20th, if not 21st, century standards. The funding was agreed and the work to give us mains drainage was scheduled for last September. Now they're telling us it'll begin at the start of January (or possibly mid-January) and be completed in 4 weeks (or possibly 6) (maybe) (or possibly more). So our choice is: 1. to pay 3,000 euros for a septic tank or 2. wait until we can connect into the new mains drainage. So even if the house is ready to move into by mid-February, we might have to wait a week or two longer until we can flush the loo. As we're living in relative comfort we've decided to stay on in the gîte until all systems are go.
Meanwhile, back to the sanding. By the way, that's called ponçage in French... not what you'd expect, eh? We have done little else for the last 7 days. I've sanded away the skin and nerve endings on my thumb - ouch! For once I'm glad the sun sets so early - bad light stops play at 5pm!
This is the water treatment plant just completed in the next village - once the grass grows it'll be unobtrusive.