Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Preparing for the Grand Depart

Monday 20 July 2015

Stinking hot and dripping.  I hate Summer here

Leaped out of bed early and started putting things in suitcases - ended up with one very full and the other virtually empty but they weigh the same because of the Tablet which, although small, is extremely heavy but not so much as the now unreliable laptop.  The screen keeps on freezing even though I have taken off vast amounts of stuff and deleted back ups. Because I wasn't paying attention, I deleted all backups so now have nothing to go back to. A laptop variation on burning all one' bridges.  My most important photos are on the Cloud and emailed to myself so I am not concerned if it all goes txts up.  The laptop has taken also to whirring and overheating.  They seem to have a life of between three and four years before expiring in a state of being overloaded and overheated.  I don't particularly feel overloaded, for once, but I am definitely overheated and cant wait to escape to the cool shores of the land of my birth, where you can be outdoors all day, every day (providing you have appropriate footwear and a brolly).  Have been sleeping badly, especially as I seem to have done something to my rib.  I was leaning over the sink to get open the window and release the shutter, when I felt something give and now my left lower rib really hurts and wakes me up in the night.  

OH went to do some shopping and walk dog and I blasted through my work to do list and cleared things that have been lurking for a while.  There is another requested visit during my absence - for the chateau with the dry rot and leaking roof.  If my guy doesn't make an offer, I am stopping visits if they wont drastically reduce the price.  Spoke to a potential seller who again asked the question, how can you guys charge so much?  I said if he was happy for me just to do the advertising and nothing else, then we could charge the same as the UK agents.  If he wants me to do accompanied viewings, full translations, ordering reports, communicating with all parties for up to six months, then he can pay the going rate.  Or he can sod off (I didn't say that).

OH came back and we had a quick bite of lunch - poached eggs on lovely brown cereal bread - then into the furnace to see my notary.  It is not good news about the US lady - she has to agree to sign the release document or the funds will be blocked and the only way the seller can get hold of them is by going to Tribunal - where he could take the opportunity to sue her for further damages.  Our rental unit sale and two other sales are on track.  I asked her to write to the sellers of the Villa (buyers NZ ladies) because they have let the garden go to rack and ruin and I asked her to threaten to retain 1000 euros to get it sorted out.  That should get them moving.  Lastly, I gave her the details of the new sale.  Back home and yet another shower.  Finished packing and made dinner and watered.  Showed OH where to water and pleaded with him to actually water the soil and not just zizz about the hosepipe and wet a few leaves.  I am praying for rain whilst I am away or it will all be dead as proverbial dodo.

Bought train ticket from Gatwick to Basingstoke on the train line website - am going to have to change at Clapham Junction and Waterloo - two places I have never been to - the excitement and the journey await!!  Speak to youngest on Skype and cant wait to see him. Eldest is going to try and get some time off.  He hasn't yet learned that you need to inform employers early of your intention to have day off.  He waits for them to say when he can have leave.

Spend night tossing and turning and being very hot and my rib hurt.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Thoughts on hornets and the productivity of husbands

Sunday 19 July 2015

Pretty much very hot all day 34 degrees

Had a lazy start and lay in spare bed and wrote this and drank tea and listened to the birds in the tall trees and the bees in the chimney.  The chimney breast is along one wall of the spare room and the bees come back every year to nest in an inaccessible nook.  Every year I try and smoke them out and every year they decide to stay.  This year, they have been joined by quite a few hornets.  Solitary creatures, they have a heavy drone and examine slowly the beamed ceilings, looking for a hole in which they can lodge themselves whilst they construct their intricate nests.  I squirt them with furniture polish - they don't like the smell and leave quickly.  I don't wish them any harm but they are easily the size of the knuckle to the end of your thumb and I don't want to be on the receiving end of a sting.

Went down rental unit and made up the bed and put out the towels.  Treated myself to a wonderful tarte au fraise

The main computer decided it wouldn't switch on today so OH did lots of hoovering and weed killing.  He hates my laptop.  Despite the fact that most people use two hands to use a laptop, he uses one and makes life difficult for himself.  He moans incessantly and I take the laptop off him.  He is much more productive without technology.  I found him later on in the day looking at polo shirts on EBay.  He is not the right shape for a polo shirt.  Watched Mamma Mia and ironed.  Pierce Brosnan would look good in a polo shirt....

1.30 came around and I was obliged to go out into the furnace and meet the sellers on whose house I had the offer yesterday.  The lady works in an old folk's home and does three 12 hour days in a run before having two days off.  Sometimes she only has one day off before recommencing the cycle.  I wouldn't like to spend that much time with anyone or anything.  Nine til nine with people with incontinence, dementia, mental problems.  She says it is a challenge.  Her husband grows grape vines.  He has much the better deal of it.  His vines are immaculate, as is the house - he does the housework too.  We have a drink in a bar and the lady stuffs down some strange French tapas and they sign and then, with relief I go home and we have a siesta.  Dog has disappeared with the neighbours dog and is presumably running around the locale.  Find him later at the neighbours, after having to repel the other neighbours dog.  He doesn't like being squirted with the hose pipe although he is up for a little wetting and managed to soak my dress too.

Get a brilliant review from the US purchaser of the little heart buttons.  Look at Etsy and find some inspirational resin jewelry makers.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

A deal is struck!

Saturday 18 July 2015

Top and tail of the day, big thunderstorms - very hot in middle 
36 degrees

The air was fresh this morning and it was still raining.  We had all slept well, despite the lively skies.  Fortunately the dog's hearing is not what it was, and the plaster walls had escaped the frantic rakings that he used to subject them to in order to relieve his stress and anxiety.  Also fortunately, the pain in the bum neighbour's dog is terrified of them and we haven't seen him in days.

Had tea in bed and enjoyed the light breeze coming through the window and the gentle patter of rain on the shingles.  Wagtails ran across the apex, tick ticking away competitors.
Yet another order!  For raindrop cabochons.  Packed it up and send it on its way to Scotland.  Thought longingly of cooler weather and found a picture of a kangaroo in a NSW vineyard, its solid and iconic shape outlined by the snowy landscape.  There is a terrible drought out in Oz and the farmers are going broke and being forced off their land by the banks.  It is scandalous.  The bankers are responsible for so much misery.  Australian farmers are suffering like the dirt farmers in the US in the 1930's and yet we never hear about it on the news.

Figures in hand, I went to see the sellers of the contemporary house.  I was deliberately late.  The man and his daughter were hovering in the hallway.  The lady was at work.  I put in the offer at the lowest I dared in order to give myself headroom to get up to the amount they actually wanted to pay.  The man was disposed to accept it, having had the day to think about it, but the lady (buzzing like a hornet on the other end of the phone line) insisted on having five grand more.  When you get to five grand difference, you know you are not far from a deal.  I left after an hour and a half and much coffee and licking of my toes by their manic bichon frisé.  A kitten battered a cork, hanging from a string on the back of the chair. He is an attack kitten rather than a cuddly kitten.  He also batted away the bichon, which must look like an elephant to him and tried to eat my handbag.  Kittens are fearless and have undeveloped palates....

Back down town, I rang the potential buyers.  No answer.  Ten minutes later I rang them again.  No answer.  I became convinced they were with another agent.  Sat on a bench and chewed my hangnails and finally they rang me back and said they were at the coast and trying to park and would ring me back.  Half an hour later and I had gone into a bar and read the design magazines and drank yet more coffee and had to go and hide in the loo from someone who is hard to get away from, they rang back.  We agreed a deal and I rang back the happy seller and I said I would get buyers to sign offer document and see them tomorrow.

Back home and felt rather boiled and hyper and had egg and bacon and siesta.  Back down town for 7 to meet the buyers.  Air was stifling.  36 degrees.  Skies turning yellow and stiff breeze blowing.  It is party weekend in our town and there was a very annoyed smoker shouting at the Tabac owner who had sold out.  He was singing happily and didn't seem remotely concerned.  I noticed he had a pack in his pocket....  The buyers arrived and I took them into the little rental unit and we all had lots of water and they signed and I went back home and enjoyed some excellent Jamaican jerk chicken, tomatoey potatoes and green beans, prepared by OH.  Thank heavens, one in the bag.  Just need to get the sellers to sign and everything over to the notary and then I can go on hols in peace.