Flat cat and hot dog

It’s been hot here. High 30’s – Hot enough to make even an aussie complain! Its also been pretty humid. Siena’s been sprawled flat out on the cool tiles, and the cat’s been pretty flat too. This means lovely cool evenings eating on the patio and enjoying the cloying scent of honeysuckle and watching the humming bird moths.  Poppies abound in our garden too especially since I haven’t been able to mow for a few weeks. Its cooled down to high 20’s now which makes the nights a bit easier.  Meanwhile other things have been ongoing since my last blog.

The beams are now levelled and awaiting final cementing. Its nice to be moving that project forward at last.

The car having been written off and undervalued, I was in dispute with the insurance assessor because he had cited the wrong model. Eventually I got a letter saying that they needed to re-inspect because they hadn’t had access to the correct documents and that I must send them within 7 days or be in violation (not quite sure of what) but they “needed” the log book (which was in the car anyway) and the original purchase invoice (heaven knows how I’d get hold of that – the original car showroom had changed its computer system twice apparently since I had bought it from them). Fortunately I had a some sort of credit agreement (not sure why since I paid cash but I think there was some new for old trade in involved). Anyhoo, they increased the valuation by a third and with some clause in my insurance called Capital Reparation we should be able to get it repaired. That’s good because the valuation is still 1500€ less than the equivalent that we could buy here.

After 3 years of photographing vital documents and fiddling around to get copies good enough to send off for various French bureaucracy (this is France so there have been a LOT). I finally bought a printer/scanner. It’s not that they are especially expensive it’s just that our existing printer works fine but isn’t a scanner/copier. Anyway the new one is now acting as a talisman against further bureaucracy.

So what else… my foot got worse, the swelling got as far as my ankle and above and blisters started to appear – despite the antibiotics. So finally the doctor not only admitted it was an infection but an antibiotic resistant one and sent me to a specialist in Limoges. That specialist wrote a lengthy prescription that fortunately revolved around 96 antibiotic tablets because the rest of the detail seemed to be all the paraphernalia around dressing the blisters which seemed to be being considered a cause rather than a side effect. Whatever… the referral to an “angio-embolisme” specialist I found disconcerting enough not to make much further small talk. Surprisingly though, I still had to drive myself across town to another clinic for another scan. This time the length of my leg proving that I did not in fact have a blockage caused by arterial blood clot. Nice to know. So I am now half way through the antibiotics (at 6 a day) the swelling is going down but its taking its sweet time. So the hot weather has been a blessing since it is only now that I can even think about not wearing open toed sandals.

A friend of Delia’s says she likes my photos and what a nice couple we made – I thought  she might be looking at a photo of our friends rather than us so, for anyone who’s forgotten what we look like here’s a gallery for you.

Beams, van hire, friends visiting? My foot!

The title is meant to be amusing, not complaining but its been a tough fortnight.


At last the beams are going in. After Delia and I had nearly given ourselves hernias just getting them out of the truck, we decided to put it out to tender. One of my web clients is doing it,  and he’s got a long way. Disturbingly it is just him and his very slight girlfriend – he says it’s just technique but I reckon she has steel cables for arm muscles. Once the beams are in I will enlist a friend’s help with the flooring, given Delia’s delicate situation (thyroid problems that is, in case you read something else into that comment).


We have a few other situations we are trying to deal with too: hiring the van involved one cancellation because it was going to be too small (they had given total length on the web rather than usable length) and an internet reservation that got totally lost. But both of these payments left my account so I am currently in dispute with one who says they have never received it and the other who says I have to wait until the end of the month for the refund.

Also, our car has been written off, if you have read Delia’s blog and seen the photo you probably won’t be surprised. But the offer they have given me is little more than half what I would need to buy the same model/mileage/age. I hope this is because they have used the wrong model in the documentation they have sent me, a much lower spec, smaller engine and two years older.

On the bright side, all of the above have given me good telephone and written French practice!

Not to be on too negative a jag here, but I have also done something to my foot. It is difficult to walk on, swollen and red. The doctor claims it is a bruised toe joint and ordered blood tests and a prescription for shoe inserts. I told him that the toes don’t hurt to move them but the swelling is very painful to touch – I had hoped for a dose of antibiotics to clear what I am convinced is cellulitis but he is emphatic it is not. So I have to wait a week for the blood tests (which I doubt will show an infection unless it has developed into blood poisoning!). In the meantime it is getting more painful and, possibly psychosomatic, granted, but I feel I have a raised temperature. On Monday back to the Doctor perhaps?


The weather here is lovely, we just had a long lovely weekend with T&R two friends from Leicester, we took some lovely photos and Siena had a great time being moithered by T who loves dogs but no longer has one herself.