Contemplating the need for furniture.
Sale rooms and the vide greniers had been suggested but relying on being in the right place at the right time to find just the right furniture seemed to be unlikely. They would be fun to look around for all those important extra bits and pieces later. We were beginning to think that at this rate, we could end up spending a large part of each holiday looking around furniture shops.
Cleaning the old paint off the beams and painting the ceiling inbetween them took hours of hard and dirty work.
Less than two weeks later, we came back with the biggest transit van we could hire on our normal driving licenses. Once the warehouse lads had lifted the heavy items in for us, we loaded up the sofas at home and took the opportunity to fill the remaining space with all kinds of things that we would not be able to fit into the car, including our old garden bench which we thought would get a lot more use in France than it did in our garden in chilly Derbyshire. There was also a shower cubicle and tray for the bathroom, which was to be the next DIY project, and a spare lawnmower.
There was not much space left in the van.
All in place and perfectly polished.
Mme André was somewhat bemused by the whole thing. We turned up with a van, stayed one night and then left again !! The drive home was long and hard and to our absolute dismay, we hit snow, literally, in Northern France, even though it was 6th April - that wasn't supposed to happen ! Driving a large and completely empty transit in snow was not a happy experience. We passed a couple of nasty accidents on the motorway, one involving a horse box, although the horse was standing by the overturned box and seemed to be OK. These slowed us up and we missed our ferry, having to join the long queue for another one.
Not a speck of dust to be seen !
The whole weekend had been quite an adventure but I wouldn't wish to repeat it in a hurry. Huge transits are horrible to drive. They are slow and hard work and very uncomfortable and doing all those miles and then back again in just 2½ days was exhausting. But it was worth it just the once.