Jardin d’Eve – An Autumn Adventure

The Volcanos in the background

The journey over…

On 22nd September 2017 – Myself, Roy & little Flo. drove from our home in Portesham to our new home in the Cantal… in our trusty ISUZU work truck. It was a long journey down, avoiding Paris, approx 12 hours without stopping. With me being nearly 3 months pregnant, it was an ‘interesting’ journey to say the least.

It was the first time we’d been on the EuroTunnel, usually we fly (from Southampton or Bristol) it only took 35mins to actually cross the channel. We are going to try ALL the different ways to travel there – i’m really looking forward to going on the T.G.V. again (Le Train Grande Vitesse – The Big Fast Train) the Ferry… not so much. Our middle daughter, River, came over on the plane, to Limoges airport, with my parents and stayed for a week while we stayed for over two. We rented a couple of nearby Gites, one of them was in walking distance of our barn. Both were cosy and we would definately recommend them.

Our welcoming committee…

When we arrived, our neighbours were there to greet us, they had obviously missed us…

The cows & their BULL had moved into our garden.

This time we also met quite a few of our neighbours – of the people variety – we handed out our cards so they knew who we are and they could contact us if they needed to, especially the local farmers. Everyone seemed friendly – only one of them spoke English – and very interested in what we were doing… they ALL told us how much work it was going to be… but that’s the fun part, or so Roy tells me. 

Let the work commence…

We couldn’t wait to start the reapair work on our barn. We managed to find everything we needed in our area. Roy soon made friends with the staff at the local ‘Brico-Marche’. They were very helpful and our English-French communications were hilarious sometimes, with lots of hand gestures.  I feel we are becoming local celebrities as there aren’t many English residents (or tourists) around… especially one’s full of energy & all excited like us.. ha ha!

Buying building supplies with daddy. 

Repairing the biggest hole in the Barn.

We hired some tower scaffolding for the weekend but the prices were too high for 1 week so Roy made his own – ‘Dalley Style’ with boards nailed to the beams and a tall ladder.

The walls are very thick, will be great insulation.

The whole family helped.

This is the date which our barn was built. Can you read it?

Me with our ‘soon-to-be’ view every morning.

We finally found the natural spring in the opposite field, that we have rights to. Luckily it’s just on the edge, so easy for access. At least we won’t have to wrestle with the cows when they are in the field. Hmmm, constant mountain water, what to do with it?

The Natural Spring.

Time for a break…

There are lots of walking opportunities around the Cantal, definately in our neck of the woods. We saw walkers on paths through the top of the hills both sides of us. The road from our hamlet to the local village is also walkable following the stream all the way down.

The hamlet where our barn is.

A view of Vedeche.

There are lots of places along the stream, that runs near us, for us to padddle in

Freezing cold water on a hot Autumn day… lovely jubbly.


Time to go…

So we’ve patched up some holes and secured it for the winter. No doubt the 6ft stinging nettles will grow back and our neighbours with the enchanting bells will be there to greet us when we return… can’t wait!

This will be our entrance to our house.

It is sooooo beautiful here, we didn’t want to leave but knowing this is our future encourages us to finish everything we have to do in England before the big leap next year.

Our next plans…

We have been a bit slow on finishing the plans for the Mayor, but have been in contact via email and will get them off to him shortly. It will be 8 weeks before they return them to us, hopefully with our permit to start doing the huge renovation work. 

 At the moment we intend to return in February, for a week or so, to do some more work on the barn. The next time, after that, will be when we have moved here permanently…. this could all change as we need to sell our house and have our 5th child… will this be in the UK or France, only time will tell.

Roy looking over the mountains of the Cantal from Salers


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