Fun and games

It was a weekend of fun and games with birthdays and get-togethers.

From a ten hour karaoke session to celebrate the birthday of Big T’s sister to a lunch in Croydon with the usual suspects, we certainly packed it in.

Combined with the power shower packing up, it was all go!

It ended with a restorative stroll through the allotment meadow and an early night as festivities as set to continue all week!

The mysterious life of bees

In France, just outside the front door of the studio there is an old honeysuckle vine.

There is one small twig hanging over the door which is bare of leaves where, each evening, it is clustered with bees gathering to sleep for the evening. It’s fascinating to watch them jostle for space buzzing and then settle and all is quiet. In the morning, they’re gone.

My theory is that they’re camping for the night as it’s too far to fly back to their hive and the lure of the lavender is too hard to resist.

I will have to research the mystery of the camping bees.

Taxi taxi!

I have recently discovered there’s an app for black cabs in London.

I’m seriously late to the party but what bliss yesterday as I was busy buying a radiator cover (in July) and couldn’t possibly have dragged an enormous heavy box home on the bus.

How civilised to request a taxi from my phone and have a nice chap load and unload me and my purchase door to door. I’m converted!

I can only hope that as an old(er) lady I can afford to travel by taxi.

No Uber here!

Cleaned and rented

Another cleaning session in France and the house was ready for guests. Everything was finished, cleaned out, cleared, stashed, stored and emptied. The house looked lovely, the garden was spectacular and not a leaf to be seen in the pool. It was a lot of work!

We decamped to the studio for the rest of the weekend where we celebrated both Bastille Day and our sixth (London) wedding anniversary at the local bistro in Le Rouret.

We stopped on the way home to listen to a band in the Le Rouret square playing ’80s music to a rockabilly rhythm in English. It was an odd combination which seemed to confuse some of the dancers. Very French!

On Sunday we decamped to the river in nearby Villeneuve Loubet where we claimed a pebbly island in the shade. Silver birch trees dappled the light and the water was very cool and refreshing. It was certainly better than listening to people in our pool but we were eventually invaded by a noisy family so decided it was time to head home.

And then it was back to the airport with a few busy weeks ahead as we now reach peak season with birthdays, weddings, airbnb bookings, house renovations and it all culminating in a trip around the Turkish islands on a boat.

Fun times ahead!


The Third Room

The third room is done, well, done enough for now.

This is how it looked in January…img_1910-1

I have assembled the bed and made it up with clean (albeit slightly dusty) bedding, all ready for our inaugural guest arriving from Australia. Lucky it’s my brother who, as an architect, surely must have lived in worse conditions than these! Who needs a kitchen anyway?!

This evening I installed a blind. It looked brilliant, the perfect colour and a rather good installation, or so I thought. All went well until I tried to roll it down with the chain, and nothing happened. And then the chain snapped.zVORupNkRYWnr%9qT8wliQ

I decided enough was enough and ignored it for the rest of the evening. Plenty of time to find a solution or claim it’s purely decorative!

And it turned out that by reading the instructions, all was well and the blind was working perfectly. Who would have thought?!


Tiny signs of life

After carefully tending the poorly bay tree, I was encouraged and slightly hysterical to discover a new sprig of tiny green leaves on a branch. I may have even cheered!

I had repotted the poor thing, fed it, watered it and spent each evening carefully picking up the fallen leaves whilst talking to it like a lunatic and rubbing its crisp, brown, burned-looking leaves as I was convinced it had been lonely.

The upstairs neighbours are probably laughing at my efforts as they spotted me cycling home with a large bag of soil balanced precariously on my handlebars.


The Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild

We decided to take a morning off to get some inspiration and so off we went to Cap Ferrat, one of the nicest parts of the Riviera to see how the other half live, or at least, used to.

The gardens were what we’d really gone to see and we weren’t disappointed. Overlooking the Med on all sides, the gardens transitioned beautifully from Spanish, to Stone, Japanese, Cactus, Provencal, and Formal where fountains playfully splashed in time to orchestral music.


Very lovely indeed and it would seem we now need a fountain, and I have just the place for it!