Tag Archives: darkhorsephotos

Finally…… Image heavy…. Bring on July…

A rather enjoyable afternoon taking images of the progress & editing them ready for web usage, as well as keeping the documentation of the Progress & changes…
I’m sure one fine evening in @ 5 years I’m going to go to the Big book shelf on the living room wall, lift off a Rather Large & Worthy Tome AND SMILE…

Managed to get through 73 frames with the D3s, and a wide angle… Well I wanted to see the place as a whole not have to piece together images like a jigsaw in PS just to understand ….

I guess we best start outside….;-)
Not much changed since December last year in reality, the place IS watertight, after the two minor leaks were remedied…
Above the Kitchen window is where the a Dog Leg starts, the tiles up there were double drilled to secure them to the roof batons, BUT only 1 screw was used to secure them.!! Added to that was the complication of the Dog Leg.
The Ridge tiles, didn’t quite cover the top row of tiles… Leaving the single drilled hole open to the rain… The water ran down inner membrane & onto the Velux gap… Now solved…. Silicone & a second screw…!

The other minor leak was also solved, with a bloody good coating of Bitumen & a stiff brush….!
Water was gaining access down the concrete by the Gable end. & dripping slowly on to the deck.. But oddly enough, it only happened when the East Wind was blowing the rain towards the back of the house..! ??

Anyway, having the roofspace open, was a bonus as the leaks did no damage & were found over time & cured… A positive thing…

Inside we go then… Lower level, Accom 1, living room > Dining room…
Dining room will be in the area where the bike is parked…
A big space, 7.5M long by 4.5M wide…
The west facing side will be very light & open… Where the image was taken from….



Off to the right in the first image you can see a doorway …
This will lead to Bedroom 1, accom 1. 4M long by 3.5M wide…
West facing window.


You can see through door to bedroom ( off the living room ) another doorway to the far side which will be Bedroom 2….
Again a light & open space… Bigger room 5M by 5M, with a separate doorway off to the Bathroom …
The black line on the floor will be a dividing wall between bed2 & Kitchen passageway.
YOU ARE VIEWING FROM THE BATHROOM DOORWAY, kitchen to the Immediate Left..


A superb bit of hand crafted skill from my Fathers hands….
A red pine Staircase, with twist…
Still covered in cardboard & tape to protect the treads until it’s all varnished & finished… It is a fantastic bit of skill & labour.
And on it… The Guardian of Her Domain…;-)
Though shalt not pass unless you have treats..!




The guest bedroom ( where I’m writing this from ) is at top of the stairs, west side, and you’ve seen that before… Besides it’s not Tidy…;-)
The same with the bathroom… Although it is now completely Plastered & ready for tiling & painting !!!
Shower ( Gucci one ) is working and the 3.6Bar pump is putting out a strong pressure…


The passageway ( 8Meters in length ) has three beams through it.. Entrance to kitchen & the Dining room opposite…
Both also finished ready for painting. & decorating…
Dining room on west side, kitchen east… Long thin kitchen, & Chauffe Eau room there too… Needs cupboard doors, but they are coming in July hopefully… Hopefully..

And onto the Living room… Le Sejour…. Grand Sejour….

7.5M across by 10M long. Huge… !!!
All lower walls plastered. & dry lined…
It SHOULD be said that my Eldest Nephew Paul Daglish did the dry lining , at my wife’s request, he would have skimmed it all… Even the awkward as hell sloping bits…!

You can see the rafters & beams, the OSB on the roof at the mo.
This week coming I will be insulating & cladding / strapping the inner roof… It’s 6M off the floor at central point…!
And YES… All that wood on show has indeed been coated & brushed with woodworm killer…! !!! A job that felt like painting the Forth Bridge…!!
In the first & third images, there is an unfinished Window Space…
This is a left over form the original building, & we are obliged to use it as it was a feature… Hopefully it will become a feature Stained Glass window at some point in the future, but tp it will forever be known as the Dog Window….:-) hahaha…






As you can see it’s a huge space…. !!

But finally… Arty stuff….
The bit that makes me Smile at the end of EVERY DAY HERE….
The house faces Due West…. !!!




Now that’s a VIEW…. !!!!!

Long over due….

Yes, a long while since I got the spare time to sit and think about another blog post.

To be fair , as far as the actual building process goes it’s all been very quiet…
Money has been the responsible for that….

The whole world is affected by Budgets, some work some don’t , but I have to make this one work…. There is no get out of jail card.
It’s all been manual labour tasks this past month, trying to clear the ” garden ” … It’s more of a Weedery than a garden…
And parts of that weedery are nearly five feet tall… !!!

The Strimmer is the weapon of choice to try and keep on top of the ones in front of the house.

More clearing of the accumulated soil on the hard stand close to the Studio Block, this has taken a long time owing to the shallow root system of the ivy / nettles / brambles & rat grass… But it’s getting there…

It may not look much in the image, but the bit that’s back to concrete hardstand is around 1000 Msq….. !!!!!

Other tasks > clearing the roof of the studio block…
Not quite as bad as I thought it might be, but still took two days…!



AND the clearing of the soil / root / weeds & stones ( bricks blocks & rubble ) from the front of the studio block, the bit that I need to extend the building to 8M wide. So I can put the new supports in place concreted / bolted to the existing wall..



Back breaking work… And in between all of this graft was D-day….!!!

Next blog post will be about the shots I achieved over that week..
In the mean time…
Take it easy… Put your feet up and enjoy the Sun …



Catch you on the Flip Side.

Long hard physical week…

What a week from hell, !!!!!

Lord knows, I’m not the biggest of lads, but jings…..!
My back & arms & shoulders are sore….. They know they lifted & shifted this week..

Firstly… Was the removal of the concrete / plaster from what will be a feature wall ( when my Darling Wife gets back from Foreign Duty with the MoD, she will be Re-pointing it, she doesn’t know this yet…:-) but hey Ho, it’s officially Decorating & that’s not my job …. Haha… )

Nice Pink Sandstone that needs a clean white finish repoint, but it’s gonna be awesome when done …

To say it was awkward to get off was an understatement..!!
It smashed the Chisel..! And caused me to batter my hand with the Mash a Hammer ..! Sore doesn’t cover that..!!!!! My language was somewhat Blue.!!


Next up was a nice delivery of tools from the UK, in that lot was a 9″ Grinder..
A heavy unit.. & a diamond blade to go with it…
5+Kg & my Arms & shoulders know it…!

It was to cut a new doorway between Living room & Kitchen ( giving access to the Bathroom ) in Gite 1… And to extend the doorways into the Bathroom & Bedroom 2…

Everything the other dude of that black line HAS to go… Big doorway, but it’s about potential wheelchair access & ease of movement..

To say it wasn’t easy is an understatement.!!!


You couldn’t see the thing to cut it from all the Dust.!!!!!!

I was whiter than a uniform at a KKK meeting.!!!!
Jings. It took me half an hour Walkies with pooch to clear most of the stuff off me, the wind doing a decent job of clearing my lungs..
Yes. I had PPE… I’m not daft…!



A start was made. & one of the other doorways extended.. & all cleared up this morning,
Ready for Monday’s revitalised efforts..!!!


Today is a rest day…
And I need it… Sore shoulders – arms – back & generally tired.. I slept till 10 this morning.. Even pooch didn’t wake me….!
8AM constitutional.!!!! Usually..

Oh and it’s Chelski v Scousers in 30 minutes…. SkyGo here We Come…..!!!
Oh & Pooch wants to Play ….


Key Inspection ….

Well, we are in France & that Most Certainly brings Officialdom & Red a Tape to the fore….

Today was a Red Letter Day though…. A Very Special Red Tape Officialdom Day..

The Electrical Consuel, ( the only building inspector that I need to get a certificate off ) arrived, spent 35 minutes going through 32 plug sockets. & 6 radiator boxes. 6 TV points & 6 telephone points ( don’t get me started on jobs for the boys !!!!!!! ) 11 lights & one Oven connection…!

Every single line was checked, he almost had a Tartan Fit ( how very Scottish of me ) when he discovered the Water Tank in the Comblé ( learning new French words Daily ) attic….! And that it was above some of the Electric junction boxes….

But seeing as he had never seen that before, HE had no rules or regulations to fall back on to say NO….. So he was left with no choice but to PASS the Building AS Safe… 🙂

Certificate in Hand, ( the Sparkies Hands as he needs a copy so he can supply US with his 10 year guarantee on his work ) and a copy of it ready to go to ERDF ( the mains elec supplier ) to complete the Paperwork for the permanent supply…:-)

All We need now is the Devis ( estimate ) to arrive from ERDF & to get them paid upfront & then the work done within two & a half months… & things are almost All Singing / All Dancing…

Well, Apart from the half dozen other complications of a staggered build process 🙂

A Rather Talented Strawberry Blonde Friend of mine once said to me ” Small Steps forward & you will get there…. ” then he went off to go bang the Tubs & play some Rock n Roll………

Today was a big step, a great step, it’s good to be going forward 🙂

Last week saw my Wife finally arrive here for a bit of a holiday…
The first time together in @ 4 & 1/2 months… Some HUGE changes since saw the place..
But it was TimeFor a week of rest & taking pooch out for fun…
Beach & Forrest… 🙂

West coast beach @ Pirou, must have been @ 10Km + to ourselves…!!!

Lessay Forrest…
Pine cones & Squirrels GALORE….


Her BEST Cesear Romero impression….. 🙂

Been a long long time….

Well, where do you start after such a long time of not blogging..?
Somewhere near the beginning would be ideal I thought, but that seems such a long way back. About a week ago I kinda hit a rough patch….

Combination of things I guess, loneliness, no communication from the Wife, in fact with only the dog for company the Spoken word was beginning to be a one sided conversation….. Language barriers although I am getting better slowly, an unhappy Sparky / Plumber from being a tad underpaid at the end of the month, the prospect of at least two weeks without any running water , hot or cold…. Which has now rolled on to five weeks… No washing for me, unless it’s in a bucket & the kettle has been in the Full Power State for 5mins…. And only a working toilet as the good thing…!!!!

The bills were mounting up, the water , the elec, Food for me & pooch, satellite fitting ( Internet An ESSENTIAL ) , car tax due, trade accounts due, both here and in the UK, Certificate for the Fosse to comply with Regs, the ” Terracier ” needed paying for the digging in of the waterline to the house & for the completion of the sewerage line out to the Fosse touts Eau……….
It would have been something like 50 meters of digging Wet Clay soil at two feet deep by a foot wide by Hand otherwise…. Not something my back would thank me for…!!!

Car tax, not something you pay in France, but since the car doesn’t have a Certificate Contrôlée ( French MoT ) and isn’t ready for one yet, but it does still have a Valid UK one…. it’s easier to stump up the 6months roadtax and solve the problem rather than dig a new one just now…

Indeed folks, the budget was tighter than the zulu hatches on a war canoe in a force nine in the mid Atlantic…!!!
Been there done that, threw up, violently, it’s the HELL of all diseases… Seasickness.

Anyway, I was somewhat down in the dumps about the state of things and the fact the place wasn’t arriving quite as quickly as hoped… And there has been a hell of a lot of finance put into what’s been achieved with the help that has been here. It’s been over a full month on my own, possibly what triggered the malaise….?

In order to occupy my thoughts I set about a back up of both the phone & the Pad…. There were images galore to sort out & remove to free up space …
Images to look back at and judge how far We had come in what is a relatively short four months… !!!

RETROSPECTIVE, a look back at where you have come from and the path you have taken to arrive where you are now.
A very apt word. Applicable to everybody….
What would your Retrospective be & what will it teach you.??




A Glorious Saturday in Normandy.

Well, it’s a glorious day here @ Darkhorsephotos…..

Task of the day :- go and shoot some shots of the changes to the house & property, sort out the rest of the sizes for the windows & plan the ordering of them… I.E. The stock numbers & sizes / finishes & set them all up one one sheet so we can just walk in & order easily….
Numbers seem to negate the Language Barrier.:-)

Then :- off to show my nephew some local history… Probably Utah beach with the Pooch.:-) and enjoy a Cidre Bouché before a lazy afternoon in the sunshine watching the sun drop from the “Premier Etagé” of the new place….

Life’s good…

Enjoy it while you can…