Thursday, 4 April 2013


We're seven days into a ten day break at our house in the Limousin. Unusually for us there are very few jobs to do whilst we're out here, no guests to entertain and the only thing to worry about is getting as much relaxation in as possible which is a high quality problem. Mel and I are both on a fairly tight health regime currently and so other than a couple of bottles of red wine (no really....) we've majored on good healthy eating, cycling and walking. Our evenings have mainly consisted of giving up on films half way through because they failed to impress.

The weather has been as patchy as can be expected at this time of year,  though thankfully we have escaped the snow that continues to fall in the UK. However, yesterday we awoke to brilliant sunshine so after a lazy lunch at a little restaurant in Pageas that we habitually visit we borrowed our friends Roz and Neils dog Tess and ventured off into the Limousin forest (les Essarts) armed with a map, a bottle of water and little else.

Thankfully our navigation skills stood up to the test without having to resort to dropping a trail of breadcrumbs behind us and we had a thoroughly fulfilling couple of hours walking around the barely discernible woodland trails without seeing a single person. Tranquility doesn't come easy to me but I found it in spades yesterday, the absolute antithesis of the hustle and bustle of the last few months.

Tess led the way. She appears to know the route like the back of her paw and she comically appeared to show frustration at our hesitancy. Some hours later we returned back home to a roaring fire and a rare glass of wine to toast a fantastic day.

We have a couple more days left before we return to blighty. Mel will then return in a few weeks time with her parents to run the holiday gite. We have several bookings already and are excited at the prospect of seeing Gouhaut spring to life as a holiday destination for other people. I'm almost jealous of the people that will rent our property, spending time here in our rural idyll is a pleasure I never tire of and they get to sample life here at it's very best. The holiday season in France is only about 14 weeks end to end and outside of that window, the area returns to it's almost soporific pace.

We're planning our summer holiday where I will join Mel and her parents here in Gouhaut before Mel and I spend a week travelling down the west coast of France and into Spain. A road trip adventure that I've already begun to plan based on several gastronomic landmarks that I've read about. I will of course share the highlights of that trip here.

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