Hope you had a good week.
I’m sending you this from Charente where I’ve been all week, researching for articles. I’ve visited Saintes, Cognac, tons of lovely little villages and I’m now in Angouleme, the capital of Charente, perched high up on a hill (the town that is, not me!). The weather has been gorgeous and the people friendly, I’ve walked miles of cobbled streets, tasted wines and Cognac, eaten far too much, discovered amazing abbeys and chateaux and fallen head over heels for this lovely part of France.
I think my strangest experience so far has been to listen to a man in red tights sing opera on a carousel – you’ll have to wait for me to finish writing my post to find out more, however all I’ll say is, if you are in Saintes, don’t miss the Abbaye aux Dames and the bizarre but brilliant carousel ride!
After this trip I have to knuckle down to some writing and gardening. Much to my amazement we have finished the front of the house – everything. Shutters up. Walls built. Painted the facade. Roofs on. Guttering fixed. Garden planted. Gate on. 14 years after I first set sight on this very run-down old barn/farmhouse by fate rather than design, whilst on a day trip to buy wine – it now looks like my dream house. It’s been a long and bumpy road and I can’t tell you how grateful I am to have had the chance to do it, it’s been a life-changing journey.
People often ask me if I would do it again. Well I have to be honest and say I think so! We’ve basically rebuilt the house by hand, just the two of us and it hasn’t always been a bed of roses. But it has been an adventure. So yes, I think I would do it again, but I’d leave some bits out, like the electric shock I got three weeks ago when I didn’t listen to the instructions properly. Never confuse “don’t put the wires together” with “put the wires together”.
A massive, massive thank you to everyone following my journey on social media – Instagram (where I post photos of my travels and daily life), Facebook and Twitter. I really love to chat to everyone so don’t hesitate to message me, I’m happy to share what I’ve learned and am still learning – either about living in, travelling or where to go in france!
Now, I’m off for a walk around the old town, to get a sandwich from one of the lovely boulangeries and sit on the ramparts drinking in the views…
Wishing you a very bon weekend
Bisous from Angouleme,
Read the whole newsletter here
If you don’t want to miss my weekly “whimsies” as someone called them, and a round up of fab features, plus exclusive random newsletter give-aways – its easy to subscribe. Just scroll to the bottom of this post if you’re on a mobile device, or look on the right on a laptop, type in your email address and click subscribe…