In 2003 we built a simple house at the top of our land, intended for our daughters and their friends when they visited.
In 2006 we decided to expand and, after discussions with an architect consultant in le Vigan, decided it was wiser and more economic to expand this guesthouse and move up there, turning our current home into the new guesthouse or gîte. This was built for us (to a very high standard) by Jean-Pierre Fazeindero, whom I now regard as ‘my builder’.
One year later (!) we had plans, planning permission and had put the project out to tender. The quotes came to twice as much as we had set as our budget, but (madly?) we did frantic sums, seeking out every pocket of cash, borrowing before we were too old to be acceptable to banks, and decided to carry on.
The main builder, Lionel Martinez (more equipped to do a big project like this than Jean-Pierre), was booked up till Christmas, so it was only in February 2008 – 18 months after the initial plans – that building was at last started.
The diary of the building of this house was primarily for us, as a souvenir of an exciting but stressful period! Here it is a month before completion:
Very sadly Chris died two months before the house was completed, so in November 2008 I moved in alone – but with a whole host of friends turning up to help with the move:
Thus started the latest chapter in my life, with magnificent dawns like this from my bedroom window:
View of my house from across the valley: