Thursday, 29 September 2016

Something for the weekend...brocantes Sunday 2nd October

Brocantes / vide greniers Sunday 2nd October

* Up to 50 stalls ** 50 to 100 stalls *** 100 to 200 stalls ****More than 200 stalls    ? Unknown

BALLAN MIRE  Vide-greniers ***

BLERE  Vide Greniers-brocante **

BOURGUEIL  Brocante Mensuelle *

BRECHES  Vide-greniers et marché gourmand ?

CHINON  Vide-greniers ?

ROCHECORBON  Vide-greniers ***

SAINT ETIENNE DE CHIGNY  Vide-greniers ***


TOURS  Vide Greniers et Exposition de Véhicules Anciens ***

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Get-togethers and season endings...

In a tough year for tourism here in France we have just about managed to keep our head above water with renting out our holiday seems to get more difficult every year. The market place is saturated with offers of holiday accommodation as people try and supplement their depleting income.With so many ('Holiday Lettings' has nearly 500 alone) holiday homes available in the Loire Valley it is getting increasingly difficult to stand out and also be 'found' and it's a constant battle of David and Goliath proportions to compete with the 'TripAdvisor' and the likes. Google have advised me that my sites are not 'mobile friendly',which I already knew and I am loosing a lot of traffic because of this. To 'fix' this I have to redo hundred of that's the winter evenings taken care of !

Anyway...we have chosen our careers as holiday hosts and cleaners and the ups far out-way the downs. This year has been made more difficult by our making the 'Old Walnut Mill' available to increase our chances but as our 'project' is not moving on as it should we have been nomads again (we did say we'd never do it again) staying in whichever property wasn't rented or in friends homes (how kind you all are) when we needed too.

This year we have enjoyed so many great get-togethers and outings that you could kid yourself you are permanently on holiday (if not for the changeovers and Pauline's bed linen ironing) in an idyllic part of the world.

As the season draws to a close and friends return to their 'other' homes (in the UK) we can only be thankful to have chosen a part of France that has been adopted by a lovely bunch of people as the location for their 'maison secondaire'.as well as a very friendly bunch of locals.

Monday, 26 September 2016

Morning glory at Le Bourg...

Our current guests at 'Le Bourg' would have awakened to a lovely red glow this morning that had me and a French neighbour out in the street investigating the source...the morning sun trying to break through some cloud cover...later!

Morning glory on the front wall at Le Bourg.

Sunday, 25 September 2016

Church on Sunday...Saint Saturnin's Neuilly-le-Brignon

During last week's Patrimoine weekend I was able to visit inside the church at Neuilly-le-Brignon somewhere I had always found locked on previous visits.The church of Saint Saturnin  was founded in the sixth century by the then Bishop of Tours, Saint-Bauld. The building we see today dates back to the eleventh century and added to in the twelfth, sixteenth, and nineteenth centuries. The bell tower being the last addition.

The nave has a paneled barrel ceiling which leads to a rectangular choir.

The choir has two side chapels...

one of which has an interesting container. 

Looking down the nave to the rather grand entrance with its pillars.

There is a large painting depicting the martyrdom of Saint Saturnin who was sais to have been dragged through the streets of Toulouse by a bull until the rope, attached to his bound ankles, broke.

It sits beside our Joan

Friday, 23 September 2016

Something else for the weekend...gardens at Villandry

Come and meet the gardeners at Chateau Villandry
This weekend the gardeners of Chateau Villandry avail themselves to amateur and professional gardeners alike who are keen to take advantage of their expertise and knowledge. There are exhibitors of local produce plus distractions the children…as if wandering the delightful gardens weren’t enough!
So whether you are an experienced gardener or a novice or just want to view these incredible gardens, this could be the weekend to do it.
Check their website for full program

Thursday, 22 September 2016

Something for the weekend brocantes / vide greniers this weekend Saturday 24th & Sunday 25th September...

Brocantes / vide greniers Saturday 24th September

* Up to 50 stalls ** 50 to 100 stalls *** 100 to 200 stalls ****More than 200 stalls    ? Unknown

FONDETTES  Vide Grenier **

Brocantes / vide greniers Sunday 25th September

* Up to 50 stalls ** 50 to 100 stalls *** 100 to 200 stalls ****More than 200 stalls    ? Unknown

ATHEE SUR CHER  Vide-greniers **

BEAUMONT  Vide -greniesr, Brocante ***

BONNEUIL MATOURS  Brocante Vide-greniers *

CHASSENEUIL DU POITOU  Grand Vide-grenier ****

CHEDIGNY  Vide Grenier et Vide Atelier de la Mode

COUESMES  Foire annuelle et vide-grenier**

JOUE LES TOURS  Brocante vide-greniers *****

LIGUEIL  Brocante Vide-greniers ?

NAZELLES NEGRON  Vide-greniers ***

NEUILLE PONT PIERRE  Brocante Vide-greniers >?

SAINT PIERRE DES CORPS  Vide-greniers ***

TOURS  Vide-greniers St-Paul *

VENDOEUVRES  Brocante ****

VILLEPERDUE  Vide-greniers **

Wednesday, 21 September 2016

Changeover fatigue...

Pauline and I managed to squeeze three changeovers 'Le Bourg', then the 'Old Walnut Mill' and finally 'Les Balcons' in a week. By allowing flexible arrival dates this was always going to happen. To be honest we have to be grateful to still be having guests at this time of year in a season that has been difficult for the tourist industry here in France. It was pleasing to have Americans at two of the houses at the same time,they actualy bumped into each other on the 'English tour' at the chateau in Le Grand Pressigny.

The two American ladies at Le Bourg were artists making it five (talented) artists who have choosen to stay with us this has been our pleasure to host them.

The painting of the church here in Barrou is by  Sandra Beck who has become  a very good friend of the village.

It was great to be entertained on Monday evening at friends Angela & Dennis' lovely home after spending the day getting Les Balcons ready...they did a fabulous job of hosting despite have to cater for 19...great night in good company.

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Disappointed tourists...

We encourage guests staying at our holiday accommodation to use local facilities and visit local attractions, so it was disappointing to hear that our current Australian guests at the Old Walnut Mill couldn't get to see inside the chateau at La Guerche yesterday as they were told that it closed to visitors on Sunday, yet their website says they are open until today, the 20 th of September.

Ouverture au public 

du 22 juin au 20 septembre

How disappointing!

Monday, 19 September 2016

Local history,,,

Having spent the Saturday of Patrimoine weekend doing a changeover at the Old Walnut Mill and welcoming new Australian guests, we rustled up some energy and took ourselves on the local history tour around Barrou.

it wasn't until the last tour of the evening at 5 pm before we headed out,although I'd managed a few of those 'normally closed' churches a little earlier.

Our first port of call was the church,which is actually the third church the village has had as the first two which had been built by the river had been lost to it! Th church was beautifully dressed for the occasion...

as was Joan.

Although the church's patron Saint Maurice was looking a bit the worse for wear,although he could be excused as he has been around since the 15th century! 

This statue's origin was less certain with the date appearing to have been changed from the 13th to18th century.

The second visit of the tour was to the 'La Grand Maison' which is opposite the boulangerie.The building was the family home of a friend and neighbour's great-grand parents and grand-parents and it was she who showed us around.

We only got to see the first floor and cave as the building is in very poor condition.Project anyone?

Did you know spiral staircases go up to the left as it makes them easier to defend against sword carrying

This is the back of the building much of which dates from the 17th and 18th centuries. At one time this was actually the facade.

We were given a torch and told to mind our heads as we explored the great caves of what had obviously been a very grand house at one time.

The third visit was down to the lavoir which seemed inappropriately small for the village.

It sits on what was the original road to Lesigny, one that was used by salt smugglers,thus its current name 'Chemin des Faux  Saniers'

A surprise find down here was a little field of sheep one of which needed a lozenge as it had the deepest bleet I have ever heard! 

The 4th visit was down the familiar track to us down to the river Creuse to the location of two previous churches, beside the priory.

We understand the original village square was here before the river washed a lot of it away (1820) and the curent square used to be the village cemetery.

For the 5th visit we had to head out of the village along the D366 towards Chaumussay to the hamlet of  'La Coue.

The hamlet currently has a population of 3 but at its height there were 24 residents.

It has a charming well preserved 15th century house which would have been typical of dwelling houses of that period in Touraine Sud.

Sunday, 18 September 2016

Church on Sunday and opening doors

With today being part of the national Patrimoine weekend here in France it might be an opportunity to get behind some of the doors of normally locked churches, like this one in...


or this one in Lencloître

or this one in Jars

or this one in Varennes

or this one in Le Fert-Imbault

or this one in Neuilly-le-Brignon

 or this one that I can't even remember the location of ,

Happy heritage hunting.