Looking out on the views of Creuse the signs that winter is upon us are slowly becoming apparent. The morning dog walk reveals a new vista every day.

It’s definitely cooling down now, got our first frost yesterday. Fabulous cold crisp mornings with sunshine breaking through in the afternoon and some showers.

Although we’ve had quite a lot of heavy showers over the last few weeks preventing Simon from getting up on to the roof to fix those loose tiles. The locals say such heavy rain is fairly unusual so it looks like we brought a bit of Buxton with us.

A solemn day the 11th of November. The French don’t do remembrance Sunday like the UK. They have a bank holiday for WW1 (Armistice) and remember WW2 separately. Anyhow off we toddle to the memorial at 10:45 for remembrance at the eleventh hour. English poppy and French cornflowers in place. The event goes as expected. I shed a tear and remember all who fight for peace. I clutch my photograph of my Great Grandad (Private Walter Staniforth who died at the battle of the Somme). It’s particularly poignant to be in France the country where he rests.

There’s a sing-song with the choir all very civilised. Then the Mayor asked us all back to the Mayor’s hall for drinks reception (It’s only half eleven but OK we’ll be social) Anyhow we’re presented with strong peach cocktails, whiskey and wine mixed with that strong red stuff…… and we cracked on with the Franglaise.

Feeling warmed up and certainly cheered up with a somewhat special warm glow. I had to go to bed for an hour once I’d wobbled up the hill back to the house!

The fire is on 24/7 with a lovely gentle warm glow. It holds the heat so well. It’s like an enormous radiator! We’ve fitted half of the insulation and the loft is progressing well. In the morning you can clearly see on the roof where the frost is and where the heat is escaping.

We also noted that the French folks in the countryside are bloody hardy. One old chap (Michel) is 85 years old – he’s not cold, not put his coat on yet never mind the fire – windows and doors open all day chickens, cows and dogs in and out all day. It’s like living in an alternate universe.

Loving living the dream, now back to the renovations…

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