Swapping Homes Anybody?


Tuesday, August 2, 2011

It got better

After the initial shock, I felt better once hubby found the switch for the central heating. Arriving in a strange place when it’s dark and you’re tired makes for uneasy feelings. The house had been all shuttered up and gloomy. The next day, we opened up the French windows and let in a frail Parisian sunshine.  We felt much better after that. A few hours of cleaning and a bottle of air freshener later, things looked up even more.
It’s a lovely house if a bit dated and rundown; a withering flower that has seen better times and more attention when it was younger. In contrast, we had spent many a weekend to prep our own abode: repaired little things, done touch-up jobs, bought new towels, even sheets. A friend asked me before we left,”Why don’t you do all that after your return?” We just wanted to present our home at its best.
I’d better concentrate on the positive. The location is just magnificent. Within a reasonable train ride into Paris and not too far from Versailles; in a quiet upscale neighborhood with big gardens and beautiful views. We have our own swimming pool and rabbit. Plus a guinea pig thrown in. That’s right. Two weeks before our departure, we got the request to feed these two pets. What could we do? I had specifically chosen a house without pets. They are outside, however, at least at the moment. (Hence the smell?)
Since the weather picked up yesterday- now around 80 F- we mostly live and eat outside. The open windows and doors provide a fresh breeze. No air condition, or rather a broken unit outside. What we do miss, however, is the lack of an ice-maker or at least a little freezing compartment in the big fridge. There is a deep freezer in the garage but that’s a long way from the kitchen.
And we made friends with the pets. The rabbit loves dandelion and the guinea pig prefers carrots.  But they firmly remain outside.

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