Not today, thank you

Trip Start Jul 19, 2009
Trip End Oct 25, 2010

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Flag of France  ,
Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Today we went looking at houses.

It was a strange mission as we knew in advance we were not going to buy one.
I sort of got myself lured into it.
A couple of days ago we spent a lovely day swimming and yes, eating, at the Dordogne riverside.
My favourite spot, it is near Creysse and that has to be the most beautiful old village in the whole of France. Please, please go and visit it if you are anywhere near - you will thank me for it.
A few miles on is the medieval town Martel. To get there, you drive by and under Les Gluges, the hanging rocks. Another breathtakingly beautiful place.
I know I keep saying 'beautiful this, beautiful that', but it's true and 'pretty' just doesn't do it justice.

Out of habit I check the pictures of houses for sale, and in spite of my protesting I was just looking, the real estate agent practically pulled me inside, sat me down, and before I knew what happened, I had agreed to come back today and make the rounds.
Peter told me to just go by myself, as he's still not in favour of living in France, but curiosity got the better of him and he came along for the ride afterall.
Of course I kind of hope he will get inspired and see the light, but this time, for once, we were of the same mind.
It's hard to fathom, there are thousands of gorgeous old houses for sale, they are practically throwing them at you, and we get towed around three totally unsuitable houses, miles and miles apart. Money spent on petrol would have made a nice down payment.

The first was cute-ish, but it had a great big spiral staircase in the middle of the living room, blocking the kitchen and the back door. That would have to go.
I must admit I had fantasies of pole dancing once you removed the banister and steps.
The second looked perfect from the outside; an impressive, converted old barn.
Situated on top of a hill, part of a tumbling down, intriguing hamlet.
Six fabulous dogs in pens in the garden. I had a good look at them, cos I couldn't stand being inside the house.
Never seen anything like them. One had a coat like marble, grey and white, another brown with cream stripes and mottles. His right eye a big brown patch giving him a roguish look. A white-ish one, like an old linen tablecloth with rusty spots. I wanted them all. They were the sweetest things.
Turned out they were hunting dogs. The owner was a hunter. Inside his house was like a hunting lodge. I saw guns, ammunition, nasty knives, books on hunting, paintings of hunting scenes. I'd seen enough, I wanted out.
The last house - our agent must have decided on  the scenic route as it took for ever, the bends and hills making me queasy - was by far the best. A really pleasant house, 300 years old, the living room proudly featuring a magnificent fireplace. A well kept garden from which a stunning view,
The owners, a Belgian couple, were there to meet us. Though trying hard to be relaxed and friendly, it soon became painfully clear, they were in dire straits. Money wise, family matters - the whole litany of misfortune was bestowed on us, making us feel somehow responsible. We should at least do the decent thing, and help them out here, in other words take the flaming house off their hands.
We almost fled to the car, half expecting them to come running after us.

Talking things over on the way back to our own little cottage, we contently agreed we hadn't seen anything half as lovely as ours.

Well, it looks like it's gonna take some time, some mulling over.

So, Monsieur Immobilier, not today, thank you
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