10am To the bank to pick up the bankers cheques for the house.
11am Meet at the notaires, with my notaire for the exchange of contracts, keys, paperwork etc.
12 am Finally, I have the keys in my hand to our new beach house. Very exciting. I can finally empty my car, which has been full to the roof since Saturday with essentials for the house: pots, pans, cups, glasses, toys etc. I was very lucky, someone (a friend of a friend) in the north of La Manche in Barfleur had just bought the necessary furnishings for their gîte, which has now been rented long term unfurnished, so they were looking to sell lots of them. I got a great deal, including a “bébé foot” table for 5€!
Unexpectedly the previous owners have taken the oven and kitchen furniture which is a bit of a surprise. However they have left the old stone cider press, so you win some and you lose some.
13pm I call the electricity, water, gas, and telephone companies to get or stay connected to all the necessary services.
14 pm Back home, some 35 minutes away, via the bank to hand in some bills to get some money released from the loan. Then home to meet the people who are going to move some things from home to make the beach house liveable until the refurbishments are completed. So off goes the garden furniture to serve as a dining table, the sofa and coffee table I inherited from my brothers, the arm chairs from Granny’s cleaners old flat, a fridge, a cupboard from the kitchen that I’ve just replaced in Gîte Lily.
Then picking up the children, putting the dogs in the car and off we go to spend our first night in the beach house. Only one slight problem… the beds have not arrived. The people dropped off the other furniture in the garage, and as I can’t move the sofa by myself, we strip off the mattress for the girls and I sleep on the cushions.