Thursday, 28 January 2010

Toying with telly

Have been dabbling with the idea of doing some TV in relation to écovallée. But as a producer in the UK suggested the other day, why should people care about the self-imposed difficulties of a middle-class family living in another country, when there are so many more needful subjects to cover? (My words, not his.)

Fair point, I thought.

Meanwhile, I've had meetings with the mayor and the regional Chamber of Commerce and in a few short weeks, I'll be able to report (how's THAT for positive thinking about two and a half years of tilting at hot air?) that we'll be open for business - legally - this year. Of course, there's the question of finding the money for the wood for the platform, and the new cover (I never did tell you what was so wrong with the original material we bought, did I?) and a few furnishings.

Horse. Cart. Cart. Horse. (Hang on - we do have a cart horse, but we did get the horse before... No. We haven't even found the cart yet.) For old times' sake, and to give your eyes a rest from all these weary words, here's a photo of the yurt we were originally going to live in, in front of the Brighton Earthship.

And to keep you really up to date, here's the yurt we're living in now (when the snow kindly covered all the crap lying around in the yard).

Maybe I should have called this post: Spot the snowball.

Saturday, 23 January 2010


...all my troubles were pretty much blown away - at least for a few hours.

It all started after lunch, with a phone call from a friend, inviting us out on Friday to our favourite restaurant. We hardly ever go out, partly because of the animals, partly the children, and mainly because we are so astonishingly poor.

Then I had another call. The laptop that my awesomely talented friend Café del Nightmare is giving to me (yes, giving - I suspect there isn't a more giving person on the planet) will almost certainly be arriving on Monday. Which means this old iBook, literally held together with superglue, can become the paperweight it so desperately wants to be.

Then another call. The car was ready in the garage and I could pick it up at school-collection time.

All pretty good, I thought. How else can I capitalise on what was obviously a good day to be Capitalising on Things. So I started emailing the Chamber of Commerce in the regional capital to set up a meeting next week, but was interrupted by...

...the arrival of the mayor. Completely out of the blue. All smiles and touchy-feely. She wants to help me, she said. And to help Her Indoors with her new stitching business. She invited me to come to the Mairie on Monday afternoon, where she'll give me the name of a bank in Bergerac that could loan us the money we need to get a yurt up and fitted out this year, and details of how the Conseil Generale can help, too.

More than a little bemused, I finished the email to the CCI and set up a meeting on Thursday morning.

Then I saw the time. I was running late - but still made it to collect the car and pick the kids up from school.

The good fortune didn't rub off on The Daughter, alas. She trapped her finger in the car door and we had to go to the doctor's. No stitches and it definitely could have been worse.

I said it wasn't over.