Thursday 7 January 2016
Torrential rain of the week decided to let up for three hours this morning
Alarms started ringing at 6.45 this morning and the light was coal black and no difference between eyes open and eyes shut. RJ started running up and down the stairs and stuffing yet more things into my brand new and already ready to pop valise. We had picked him up from the UK and he had brought all of his laundry with him on holiday, plus a computer and some books. There was no way that was going to go back as hand luggage.
OH thumped downstairs, switched on the telly and I could hear him shovelling cereal into his chops. The voice on the telly droned on. RJ brought me a cup of tea. The clock ticked heavily.
It is always the same when loved ones come to visit. They arrive and it seems like you have days stretching ahead of you and so much to say and do and catching up and then, with dreadful haste, the time has expired and they go back to being a virtual presence in your life, as opposed to an actual one. Back to periodic and longed for messages on FB and blurry images on Skype.
Downstairs and the kitchen door was wide open and a balmy breeze was wafting in and warming up the kitchen. In Winter, the wind comes up from Africa and wraps itself around our corner of France and coddles us for a day or two. 15 degrees at 7.30 am on the 7 January. We will, no doubt, pay for it later in the month.
Everything and everyone was then in the car and they roared off into the lightening gloom and I went back into the kitchen and decided work was the way to get through the day. I forbade myself to go into RJ's room and be very sad.
The new offer needed work. First step is to scan in and send the offer and buyer and seller details up to Head Office. I then enter the property details onto the agency operating system. Next, send copies of the signed offer to buyer and seller. Next, contact the diagnostics technician to carry out the necessary inspections. Next, send the offer and decoded buyer details to her notary. Ring notary and make sure they have received and understood it. Ring seller and tell him I am on the case. Email buyer to make sure she is back in the UK in one piece and still keen. She is.
Cup of tea.
Read through details of the sales incentive for January and February. At the head of the email, it says it is very simple. It then goes on for three pages. I will never compete with my colleagues in the English heartlands of France in terms of fedback visits but I can knock them into a tin hat with new properties on market. Down here, I am the sole representative of the company. Suspect that they are rubbing shoulders with one another in the Dordogne, Perigord, Charentes, Lot and Limousin.
Cup of coffee and hit the private ads. Line up a house in town where I spoke to the lady before Christmas, the too modern flat which I showed earlier on this week, and a house which I used to have on sale last year and which has popped back up again. I am chatting away and saying I know the property well and that the previous owners wanted much higher price for it when it transpires that I am talking to the previous owners who lost their buyer and it has never actually been sold. Together with my new sale, one that has just gone on market and the three I will bring on this week, that will be five new properties on market. I will need to do 30 properties by the end of Feb to be in top spot.
Find some cooked sausages in the fridge. Battle with the fire for an hour (no firelighters) and then out into the rain to pick up the accounts. Arrived home to find OH in the shower and RJ had been and gone and arrived safely in UK. He sent a message on FB later on to say he was in Gatwick and waiting for a train. Spoke to WF (youngest) and he has been transferred to another section, looking after dossiers which have gone pear shaped. He has a good attitude to work and is being appreciated.
Roast chicken with Sophie Grigson stoved potatoes; basically cubed potatoes with loads of cloves of whole garlic, a little water and a little olive oil and then simmer. Green beans. Delicious.
Watch a very strange film called Mr Nobbs. Spent most of the film wondering where was Glen Close until it occurred to me that she was Mr Nobbs; a cross dressing butler in a Dublin Hotel, set in 19th century. Rather depressing.
Just before Christmas, OH selected Angela's Ashes as our evening's entertainment. We watched about a half hour and he said, 'its a bit depressing isn't it?' and when I told him it wasn't about to get any happier (the twins were still alive at this point), he turned it off. I reminded him that when we had used as firewood the termited beams from the barn end, I had said it made me think of Angela's Ashes and he said he had had no idea what I was talking about.....