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Everything posted by Monika

  1. I wonder if anybody could tell me what the extractor unit looks like in the roof. I have only looked at it since the "kitten rescue" and I think a hose is missing,  there is nothing to connect the unit to the small ventilation chimney on the roof , or is the unit not supposed to be connected to it, if not does the insulation and roofspace not get damp ?
  2. And Cooperlola, is that by any chance your beautiful oldtimer on your Avatar. How wonderful that people have kept and restored these cars which are all part of our rich heritage. 
  3. Ok, I agree with Logan "nearly" 100%. But people seem to need this idolatry, be it royalty or popstars. But surely you must admit Cooperlola that it is great that in this day and age we can still have all the  pomp and circumstance of a statevisit and that it is truly heartwarming,  the coaches with the horses and the guards and the bands and it is done so well as only the British can do it and we are envied all over the world for this.
  4.  I wanted more on Carla!  She was barely mentioned. That was interesting Cathy to hear how the French reported it. Perhaps it's a positive sign for Carla, if she can avoid becoming an "idol" like Princess Diana was.      
  5. I thought Carla looked lovely (exactly my style, including the flaties), not so sure about Camilla, I don't like her style. I had to smile at Prince Phillip when he shook hands with Sarkozy, his eyes were already on Carla. I was so pleased to see that our French visitors had the full treatment of pomp and circumstance. It's just so wonderful, and nobody does it better than the British.
  6. Surely  most of 'our houses' will appeal to the foreign buyer market, which is driven not so much by the french economy but by the foreign buyers home county's economy.  Batten down the hatches for a few years.  Why would "our houses" only appeal to the foreign Market? I thought there was a new incentive on the way for French people to buy and "allow mortgage payment against tax"? To my mind these people and programmes are not responsible.  They always paint an unrealistic picture.  Comments such as 'you can rent this out for 500 a week' without any reference to paying local tax and what it is, is not responsible to my mind.  I agree and I see red when they say that the renovation will cost such and such, totally underestimating the costs of a renovation.
  7. Amanda Lamb on Channel 4 "A Place in the Sun" was very positive about the French Housing Market. Could it be that there is no Credit Crunch in France because the French don't borrow on their Credit Card as the English or Americans do? Will the Pound sink with the Dollar? Should we now join the European Monetary system or is Brown waiting until one Pound is worth one Euro?  
  8. As my neighbours don't live there (their cottage is an "everlasting" renovation project) their washing is not a problem more my conscience as an environmentally "friendly" person! I think we have a ban as well during the summer (not last summer). Thank you for all the advice, I might just stick to the bonfire twice a year (with my broom at the ready). My neighbour told me that French Farmers start their bonfires with a tyre filled with petrol, that may be the reason why it keeps burning even when it rains!!
  9. I was just going to ask Libellule if Albert was her husband? I do adore Gypsies as long as they are as clever as Albert (he has given some great advice on this forum), however if they infringe on my rights as a "traveller" I am not so keen ( public parking area - and they were obviously there to stay for some time)  and all I wanted was a space to put my car and rest for half an hour. In our "Campervan" days (lifestyle traveller?) we used to encounter them a lot in Municipal sites, they were never a threat and they kept to a designated area.
  10. On our way up to Cherbourg we usually have a rest in the Aire Cantepie (I think that's the name of the only Aire on the Cherbour Peninsula?) The large car park was full of travellers/gypsies. Does anybody have any information how long they usually stay. Days, Weeks? Can they be moved on by the police in France? Does anybody have information, why the 8.30 (Poole to Cherbourg) BF Ferry on Wednesday 12th March was over an hour docking? (I am just curious!)
  11. My favourite job in the garden is making a bonfire once or twice a year. My french neighbour however has told me that it is not environmentally friendly. Has anybody got any data or has it completely upset my carbon footprint and I have to go on the bus (nor take any flights) for the rest of the year?
  12. They certainly seem to be well organised in Normandy too, a firm contracted by the Mairie came along our lane and cut trees and hedges, they were working for two solid days and we paid them an extra 70 Euros to cut our Leylandi Hedge, which was was totally out of control. No problem at all, it was done in no time and all the "debris" removed to a gigantic fire down the road
  13. "I generally don't like England that much!" Not my words but those of Prince Harry (third in line?) in his latest Interview in Afghanistan. I was quite surprised at this frank statement and this tendency of the English not to like their own country. Surely every country has good things and bad things. England is beautiful, we have lots of history and some very picturesque countryside. We might have a government we don't agree with, but which country has the perfect one? We might have crime, but again which country does not? But then I love France too and Switzerland and again there is plenty to critisize there.  But it does not mean "I don't like it very much". What are your thoughts? Have I got a blinkered view of England and is it really so much worse than the rest of the world?
  14. [quote user="Gardian"] Yes, yes.  Hear all that stuff about plants and births etc, etc. But WHY? (and that is sort-of shouting)   I mean, what for goodness sake is the biological reason why it's better to plant a spud when the moon is getting to its zenith (if that's the right phrase) or to go in to labour at the same time? Old wife's tales if you ask me.  [/quote] Somebody explained it once to me and this makes sense (to me anyway!): The human body consists of a lot of water (I think it is quite an amazing amount), so just like the sea with its tides we are influenced by the moon.
  15. I think you are right, I have heard that before Clarksinfrance, but is that 5 years from purchasing the property which was then renovated or 5 years from signing off the work, where could I get more information on that? ?
  16. My mother (in Switzerland) would never plant anything but on a growing moon, and also never cut her hair on a waning moon. When she had her Cataracts done she was only accepting an appointment which was corresponding to a certain phase in the moon (but I can't remember what).
  17. That's exactly it Gluestick, that is the calculation you have to make and if after all this you could buy the finished product I would not go for the Renovation (I am talking as a "battle weary " Renovater!) . But being in such a good position near the sea it might well be worth your while to renovate, because those places are very sought after and will be in the future.  With the TVA it so much depends on your builder, I know of people who have done whole renovations and extensions and only paid 5,5 % TVA (having signed a document that the house you are renovating has been a dwelling for the past 2 years)
  18. We have electric heating and leave it on the "frost setting". We turn off the water and empty the toilet cistern (but have not taken the water out of the pan). We don't empty the hot water ballon. Bedsocks and Hot water bottles for the first night is a very good idea.
  19. Thank you to both of you, yes I think that's what it is a Lasure. What we want to avoid is to have to sand off to bare wood to apply a new different product. So we will try with a Lasure. I believe they come in different colours? What is Lasure in English, i.e. what would we be looking for in B&Q?
  20. The man who has installed our shutters has vanished before finishing the job, he installed them and treated them with something shiny but I don't think it is varnish,  more of a preservative but they are now two different colours (some he made himself, some he bought ready made). We need to give them a further coat with "something" to make them look the same, what would you suggest? (Not opaque if possible so we would still see the woodgrain)
  21. Imagine just 4 stone walls (35 square meters). No roof, nothing. Adding first floor, covering it with apexed roof. (1 Bedroom plus mezzanine.). Plus Extension with bathroom and 1 Bedroom.  Installing everything from plumbing, eletrics, Fosse, decorating  etc. etc. And it came to Euros 96'000. This was an extreme renovation, with Project Manager but might give you some idea Pangloss (we now have approx. 100 square meters)?  However  I often think we were crazy considering how many projects you could buy in France which require much less renovation or possibly just some TLC.
  22. Thank you so much Albert T.I.G. You truly deserve your name as your are a fount of wisdom. It puts my mind at rest, and it's a good idea to fix it with a gap in between. Thanks again.
  23. Sorry it's me again, my husband has talked to a "woodburner installer" here in England and he suggested that he should fit metal sheets behind the woodburner (he bought them at an auto shop) and paint it with fireproof paint. I am still worried though that the metal gets so hot that the plasterboard behind it could still catch fire (the metal even acting like a conductor)? Thanks for your comments.
  24. We had a brandnew woodburner installed 18 months ago and had a terrible tar problem, it was coming out of all the joints. After a lot of research and good advice on this forum I went to the installer and he turned the flue around (having to buy some extra connecting sockets), now the female ends are looking towards the ceiling and the male ones towards the floor! And the problem is solved, no more tar!
  25. I asked our farmer down the lane, of whom I was quite afraid, he had stacks and stacks behind his barns and in the forest. He brought it round in 1 meter length and we paid Euros 38 for it. And we were invited for a drink! Ever since our business transaction he has been very friendly.
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