We arrived in France September 2002 and started to search for a home here, we stayed in Lavit at a fabulous Chambre dHote for 1 month and then progressed further toward Les Landes but in the meantime we saw properties near Carcassone, in Luchon, nr. Maubourget in fact aprox 100 in all. Then we saw Le Gassion, my husband loved it at first sight and I hated it. It was dark inside, the roof needed replacing the bathroom was gross, the staircase to the loft was woodworm ridden. What was to love.
Brian at this time was having a few problems and was having tests for prostate cancer and he was worried about that also that we had no home, it was decided that we would chance buying this house at least that would be 1 difficulty solved. The prostate problem was not a problem after all. difficulty number 2 solved.
We moved in and for about a week we debated whether we should try to resell. Then our team spirit kicked in, when we stayed in our gite we had met a lot of helpful people who were willing to tell us where to buy what we needed words in French for different appliances etc. So the Nice team started, swimming pool was a professional job and was taken care of the beams in the lounge all termite ridden were chainsawed down ( Please do not try to visualise that it was frightening. New beams treated twice against termites etc. coating of Chene clair + 2 coats of ships varnish.
Noel and Veronique Suiffet were our constant companions he is a artisan macon building walls, coating the wall with chaux ( traditional) Brian and I going to Bordeaux to buy paint from Farrow and Ball who supply paint to all the old houses in England. Choosing colours and painting the rooms we wanted painting the rest was left plain. All the huge beams sanded and varnished.
The lovely fireplace cleared of an obscenity and a wood burner in its place , the terrace outside the the kitchen covered with expensive and attractive dalle plus a small wall.
99 llaylandii cut down to expand the view.
Those are the facts, we spent an obscene amount of money on Le Gassion BUT I have no regrets because my Brian had the vision I did not, he saw the peace the joy of being able to sit with a glass of wine and overlook the canopy of the forest. He could see more than I could see !!
In January, I leave Le Gassion with many regrets that I am not staying, my French is not enough to survive a Maison de Retraite and my sons do not need the problem of sorting things out for me. Also Le Gassion needs to be returned to French ownership Marechal Gassion was ousted for 14 years by the British I am sure he will be happy it will be back in French hands.
BUT which wall has the glass jar that says it was under English occupation ( very friendly occupation )????
When I leave in January with the spirit of my far seeing husband I will leave with sadness but our home needs laughter, aperos, family and so whilst I can I will say without crying Fare Thee Well Le Gassion and Bon Chance to the new owners.