We have been in France for just over a month now and what a busy month it has been – so busy in fact that I’m finding it difficult to write down everything / anything we have done!
So, as a broad overview, work on the house has started – read days of heating men fixing last year’s frozen and broken radiators and pipes, a digger man excavating the back barn, a fosse man emptying the fosse and an architect orchestrating everything.
Our new heating system is due to be installed mid-November so fingers crossed all goes according to plan and that the winter feels snug this year! The weather has definitely started to turn – the mornings and evenings are chilly, but the days are still warm and sun-filled and so clear that one can see the mountains.
The London commute begins…
Gavin has started commuting and it seems to be working okay. He leaves for London early Monday morning and arrives home late Thursday night for a “long weekend”, working from home on Fridays. The weekends feel full of energy and come Monday, the house feels a little empty, but we are all getting into the new routine and Grif and Ro look forward to their morning Skype chat with Dad.
The new school year…
Griffon started the new school year in September and found it difficult initially. I felt terrible leaving him in an environment where little English is spoken especially as he is such an articulate child and really enjoys expressing himself. (He has been making up for not speaking much in the morning by talking non-stop from the minute he arrives home to when he eventually falls asleep at night! Non-stop!)
One month on and Griffon gives me a little wave and a smile and heads off to join his teachers and friends. The greatest attraction at school at the moment is the large horse-chestnut tree and the conkers or “marrons” as they are called in French. There seems a never-ending supply and I think the children at the school are all very good at counting!
Last Wednesday (on Wednesdays there is no school for the youngest scholars and a half day for older children) we visited a nearby town called St Gaudens and their local children’s club. It was a happy find as I have been on the hunt for something for Rohan to enjoy. The endless list of baby and toddler entertainment available in London is simply not on offer here. I’ve noticed that until three, children tend to stay with family members.
So, we are settling in! Thank you to my mom for coming over from South Africa for the crazy-busy transition period and to my nana for staying on into the winter to help out. We appreciate your love and support. Thank you for the London / SA messages along the way too. We can’t wait to share this beautiful place with all of you!