It was February and although we didn't actually have snow that first February, we did need to get someone to revise the central heating system, so we searched the french yellow pages and came up with a Guy , capital 'G' because that actually was his name! He lived nearby so we decided to call him for an estimate. It turned out that he was a good friend of our Notaire, who, by now had become a good friend ( and still is to this day) so we felt, that was all the recommendation he needed. We explained what our plans were ( creating 15 apartments on the first and second floors) and he set about the long assessment. I am unable to remember the first estimate he came up with, but I do remember that we both balked at it! The one thing we learned fast about living in France is that everything is " discutable" and Alex and I at that time needed to bargain to achieve everything that we had planned to do. To take a break from the 'discussion of pricing' we took him on a guided tour of our plans for the ground floor, which seemed to interest him . The visit suddenly ended then and he announced he would return the next day with a written estimate.
Early next morning Guy arrived with a smile on his face ! He had reduced our estimate, however he had a new proposition to put to us, one that would make our eyes pop!
He wanted to hire main ground floor salons for the wedding of his daughter!!! Bearing in mind that the whole of the ground floor needed renovating ,floors- windows- paintwork- walls etc etc. We asked him when the wedding was planned for. " June" he replied! -- WHAT!!! we thought!
This is a photo of theoriginal state of the paintwork in the ballroom, flower cornice black with mould, paintwork a grey wash , horrific institution lighting etc.
Yes you've guessed -- we had to accept didn't we! How exciting-- and would we get finished in time ??