Firstly, apologies for the delay in posting. My promise to post every week unless forewarned otherwise was dependent on France Telcom ensuring we have access to the internet! All weekend it appears that the entire village has been cut off from the outside world with no phone line and so no internet – one of the few frustrations of living in rural France.
Hopefully you saw my message on Facebook last night – posted from Dave’s phone from the top floor of the house!
This week has, once again (sorry!), been dominated by progress on the garage and making the most of the dry weather – while it lasted.
While Monday was another dry, clear day which allowed us to start erecting rafters to form the roof, it was a slow and frustrating one as some of the calculations weren’t as our builder was expecting and it took longer than we anticipated to understand why and make the first rafters fit correctly.
As the end of the frame we were very keen that they were correct as it would be the basis for the remainder – which will total about 40. Once resolved we managed to get the first 3 sets of rafters up to hold the ridge beam in place overnight before we picked up on Tuesday and completed all the rafters on the first bay.
Wednesday was a productive day but working on other parts of the frame (gable wall and door access to the first floor) which meant that at the end of the day we couldn’t stand back and feel we had made as much progress as we had when we were putting the rafters up.
Thankfully that was resolved on Thursday when we managed to extend the rafters to the centre of the building.
Our builder couldn’t work with us on Friday so we took the opportunity to focus on other things that we had been meaning to do for some time and, as it was the day when the forecast was due to change from the extended period of dry weather to the more Breton mild but wet, we cut the grass for the first time in weeks – or at least most of it before the rain started – and it looks so much better for it. Despite the recent very cold weather, previously it had been the normal perfect growing conditions that we enjoy in Brittany and the grass had gotten very long – but it still felt a little odd mowing in January!
Saturday gave us brief respite from the forecast rain which allowed David to finish digging a new flowerbed in the orchard (which we had started almost 12 months ago before the ground got too hard in the summer) to continue our plans to add more interest and planting throughout the gardens.
I had to visit another builders’ merchant / DIY store to collect a couple of things for the garage which I couldn’t get from our normal store – there doesn’t seem to be a ‘standard’ way of building in France and our builder, being British, uses some UK methods that aren’t followed in France so we have to get materials from a range of suppliers. It also meant that I could pick up a few bits for another project that I plan to complete while it is wet – more of that in the next few blogs which I hope, France Telecom dependent, will be posted next Sunday.