We heard on Friday that we have approval to move to the next stage of the mortgage process. 

This means furnishing the hypochondriac French with extensive health records and life insurance policies just to make sure that if anything happens to us, they’ll get their money back.

Luckily I’m insured for four times my salary so worst case scenario, Big T can bump me off for a lump sum! That is of course a joke and not something he would ever contemplate…(who’s writing this post?)

So once we submit another massive round of paperwork, we’ll shop around a little to compares rates and make sure we’re getting the best deal but so far so good.

Fingers crossed, we might even have a house by the summer!

The Battle for Supremacy

I’ve had an ongoing battle for the past few months (or years if I’m honest). How to beat the advance of the evil Lord Blubber and avoid the spread of middle age. 

I’m reluctant to admit to being middle aged but apparently it’s a condition which starts in the mid forties and continues until the mid sixties at which point old age begins. What nonsense! 

Still, there does seem to be a slight slowing of the metabolism and an increase of the numbers on the scales. Cycling six miles daily isn’t cutting it, the legs are strong but the core is soft.

At some point along the way I started buying lunch from Pret a Manger, a London staple as there’s one literally on every corner. Despite my best intentions, they have sneaky salads where the dressings contain as many calories and fat as the salad itself and the nutritional value is questionable. It’s also expensive so in the words of Big T, one ends up fat and poor!

And so this week I’ve begun eating with purpose. Everything I’ve been eating has had a nutritional value, it has to be high in protein, low in carbs and good fats are ok. And to justify a glass of red wine, antioxidants are a positive thing!

Take that Lord Blubber, I’m not going down without a fight!

Hail Mary

Arriving home from work I discovered hail covering the outdoor furniture and plants. It was the size of large crystals of rock salt and gave the little dog great fun digging it out of the cracks between the cushions. 

It was back to winter for us!

To France for Lunch

It was a very long day as it turned out but hopefully worth the journey.

We were collected at the airport and taken to see the house near Le Rouret. It was just as I remembered it and with blue skies, sunshine, bees buzzing and the scent of rosemary in the air, perhaps the best day to see it…

View from the pool
Outdoor Kitchen with estate agent included
The living room with original beams

From there we were dropped off in Valbonne for a nice lunch sitting in the square in glorious sunshine. For a Thursday it was a nice alternative to being at work as we shared a carafe of rosé.

After lunch we hopped on the bus to Antibes, for a Euro. We met with the notaire and signed the compromis de vente, a promise of sale which means we now have forty five days to scrape our pennies together to see if we can afford it.

Things slowed down a little after meeting with the notaire. Our flight was delayed, there was no train at Gatwick Airport and we missed the last tube home. Crawling into bed at 3am we were exhausted but we hope it was worth it.

And so now we wait and hope…

A Day in France

It was an early start as we’d had the dubious idea of going to France for a day. 

We were going to look at the house we wanted to buy as we hadn’t seen it for a year. 
Probably a good idea then apart from Brexit and a general election on the cards…
We were up and out by 6am. Agnes was going to see her friends for the day and we were at the airport at 7:30am, arriving into Nice by 11:30am local time. 
It was going to be a long day!

The Easter Staycation

This year we stayed at home for Easter. 

Previously we’ve been to France but without a house, it’s much more expensive and less appealing. So we stayed in London and had a surreal few days where we completely lost track of time and the days all felt like Sundays.

We ate Hot Cross buns, had a Mexican fiesta of Baja Fish tacos, went to see a film for old people (The Sense of an Ending, very good and worth seeing) and had a Sunday with the clan. The icing on the cake was a Mad Men marathon where we didn’t leave the house for hours. 

It was a rare chance to stay at home and relax. 

We went back to work reluctantly. It was “need another week off” Tuesday. 

An Auspicious Occasion

A wedding is the best of times, and in the case of Maria and Roger, a celebration indeed!

We set off very early to join the party, travelling to Hull and back in a day. It was certainly worth it as we had a fantastic day with family and friends, old and new and we felt warmly welcomed into the fold.

Families are made of different tribes these days. Second wives, stepchildren, new husbands, partners, in-laws and more. It doesn’t matter as long as there’s love and ideally laughter and there was plenty of both. 

It was a fantastic day of celebration and we hope there are many more to come.

Cheers to that!