Saturday, March 14, 2009

Our dream home

Right - the main purpose of our flying visit-ette to Brittany this week was to take a much closer gander at the property that's caught our imaginations; we also made arrangements to take a peek at another place which is a long-closed down bar in a small town called Collorec; more of which anon.

Here are some exterior shots of our dream bar/auberge/restaurant:
So, Tuesday morning saw a bleary eyed Millbrooker and Mrs heading inland from Roscoff after a somewhat rough overnight crossing on Brittany Ferries' over-hyped and not-very-brilliant Armorique.

We turned up in our chosen village with plenty of time to spare for our 10:30 appointment with the Mairie (the building is an old school, so belongs to the commune - therefore we got shown around by local authority staff). So we plonked ourselves out of the rain in the village centre bar "Le Fournil" for a welcome cup of strong black coffee. Jolly nice it was, too.Soon enough we made our way the hundred yards or so to the Mairie and announced our presence and we were taken along to poke around the old school. The interior needs a tad more work than we'd been hoping - but it's not impossible; we'll be getting a local builder of our acquaintance to take a look and give us the benefit of his expertise. Meanwhile - here are a few shots of the inside.
Interior problems include definite signs of dry rot on the first floor (the question is, how far spread is it?); woodworm in the two attic floors (they'll need sorting and probable replacement); a probably already fixed leak in the roof around the westward chimney stack. So - only one or two home buyers' nightmares, then.

After we'd had a whale of a time sticking our noses into all sorts of corners that hadn't had anything even slightly savoury stuck into them for quite some time it was time to head off to the unknown delights of Collorec, some twenty or thirty kilometres distant.

As we arrived in Collorec I picked up a voicemail message from Steve (who was due to meet us there to look at the empty bar) saying that the property's owner had accepted an offer only a couple of days before and "...please please please don't go all the way to Collorec, because I won't be there..." ah, well.

Hunger got the better of us and we ventured into a bar on Collorec's main street which seemed to be doing a lunchtime relais. We've done this sort of thing before, and a relais can be quite something. This certainly was. Allow me to recite the fare: already on the table as we sat down, an appetiser of minted couscous with an egg and sauce topping (along with a bottle of red vin de table and a litre of water). Once we'd slurped down the appetiser, plates were cleared and the starter arrived; ham and asparagus in bechamel sauce. We got that little lot down the hatch and then we were presented with mutton in a peppercorn sauce with a mountain of frites. The cheese board followed, then we each selected a dessert from a large platter brought to the table.

Don't get the wrong impression - this was not in any way posh dining; rough and ready would be a much more accurate description, but the food was plentiful and decently cooked. Cost? 11.50 euros each. Beat that for value.

The remainder of the day was largely spent in Bar la Forge back in good old Trebrivan and thus memories of the evening might have got a bit hazy.

Hey ho - France again in July (unless something moves on the house sale front).

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