You may remember that we were very disappointed with the August weather last year as, while supposed to be the height of summer, it was a very damp and blustery month when we felt we were constantly apologising to our guests. Thankfully this year’s August ended much as it has been throughout with bright sunshine and hot temperatures.
The week began as the last ended with me trying to complete the rear foundation of the garage and over the course of 2 days I managed to inch forward another 8 metres or so but still not to the end when I decided to take a break as I was at risk of RSI and tendon damage in my hand with constantly smashing the spade into the rock hard soil. I will pick up again early next week as yesterday I invested in another couple of tools – a proper pick axe / trenching tool and a new spade where the blade doesn’t bend!
So on Wednesday, I thought I would take advantage of the great weather and start to prepare the rear windows of Kergudon and Granary’s front door for painting. I painted the rear door of Kergudon in Breton blue a couple of weeks ago and we will eventually make most of the exterior woodwork the same colour.
Unfortunately this task was a classic case of starting what I hoped would be a relatively quick and simple job but which became much greater in scope and time. I started by cleaning the outside of the upstairs windows of Kergudon which, much like every other aspect of our own house, haven’t received quite the attention that the gîte windows had in the previous 18 months! While I was doing this I saw that one of the windows needed quite a lot of filling as, while the glass wasn’t loose or at risk of falling out, there were large gaps between the glass and the window frame. Knowing that I would need to mix some filler I thought I would see what was needed on Granary’s front door so that I could do it all together. That’s when the job increased in scope!!
I knew that some filling would be required as the door had not been painted for a number of years (and we had not managed to do so last year) the wood had started to get soft at the base. However, when I started to sand and scrape it became clear just how soft it was – thoroughly rotten in places and I am surprised that it hadn’t become a bigger problem sooner.
The 1 day ‘quick’ job suddenly needed me to cut out and replace all of the rotten wood before I could sand, prime and paint. I managed to prepare the base of the door for the new wood, which I have cut and primed in preparation, but have not managed to fit yet – one for early next week.
The end of the week was less productive although on Thursday we made good on our pledge to take a day to ‘research’ some local areas. Thursday is sort of our Saturday as David doesn’t work in the gym and it helped that the weather was still very good.
We chose to visit one of the towns on the Crozon peninsular that we hadn’t been to previously although a number of guests had and all said that it was a pretty little port – Camaret-sur-Mer.
Camaret is a pretty little seaside town and large working fishing and leisure port with a large number of restaurants and bars to relax in. Having wandered along Le Sillon, the natural breakwater forming the harbour, we ate moules frites overlooking the boats in the bright sunshine.
After lunch we took the dogs for a short walk to the Pointe du Toulinguet and found a fantastic beach at Pen Hat.
Some recent guests had recommended a beach in the area which consistently had had lots of waves and therefore was popular with surfers and we think this was it. Along the coast, as in so much of this part of the world, there are a large number of defences and fortifications dating from the Napoleonic times many of which had been modernised in WWII. One of these near Pen Hat is the museum and memorial to the world’s Merchant Navies and specifically the Battle of the Atlantic. Somewhere to visit in the future.
We spent the remainder of the afternoon on the beach enjoying a chilled(ish) bottle of Chablis and the dogs loved splashing around in the surf before crashing out on the sand. As the weather was good when we returned home a BBQ and daiquiri seemed in order!
Friday, Saturday and today have been fairly ‘bitty’ with lots of little things progressed (including my first run to the decheterie to clear more rubbish out of Dave’s gym and another trailer load ready to go tomorrow morning), indeed today has been wet outside – the first time for a while so much needed in the garden and may make digging the rest of the foundation trench a little easier.
We have continued to welcome some lovely clients, and have received some excellent reviews on Trip Advisor recently and the dogs have had lots of children and other dogs to play with – indeed Garratt has now become such an ‘outside’ dog that he has got into the habit of complaining when we don’t let him out – a behaviour that we hope won’t last too long!
We must be getting something right as one couple who arrived on Tuesday having booked for 4 nights, asked if they could stay for a 5th on their first morning.
Lots more tasks to progress and complete next week – including the hedges needing another cut (again!!) and finish the Granary door as we have guests arriving on Saturday which is also the day of this year’s Foire à l’ancienne at Commana sadly we’re still not in a position to purchase – perhaps next year …