Since we moved into our house here in France, the lovely view has been partially obscured by a really ugly old barn. It was built many years ago when the house was a working farm. Made from oak and pine timbers and sheets of corrugated iron, it was huge and slowly falling into disrepair. One third of it contained bales of very old straw, and there were also lots of other bits of scrap that the previous owners should have taken with them when they sold the house. We used to it store our trailer, the cars when the weather was bad, and our neighbours' caravan, so it had some uses but nothing could take away from the fact that it was just so ugly! It also blocked the light to one side of a willow tree.
You may remember me posting about the willow tree last year - it had cracked in heavy winds and half of it had come down. We called in a tree surgeon who said that we could have it removed completely, or that it could be saved but would not look too pretty while it was recovering, but that it would soon start sprouting again. We opted to keep it - well, I've always wanted my very own willow! I'm so glad we did. It may still not look as handsome as it should, but the potential is there and, now that it is not being over-shadowed by the barn, it will have every chance to become a fully-fledged grown-up willow!
The straw that was inside the barn has been taken by two local farmers to be used for animal bedding. I was worried that it would be mouldy and rotten but, because it's been kept dry all these years, it was perfect for animals. Our neighbours' caravan is in another part of the garden; he will be using it shortly, after which it can be stored in an old stone barn we have, alongside the trailer. There was also another pile of timber in the barn that was no good for building but ideal for burning, so our friendly local pig farm took it away in their horsebox to be used in a woodburner. On Friday morning it was busier in this little hamlet than it has been for years - two tractors and a 4x4 with a horsebox all busy emptying what was left of the barn!
Well, that's the saga of the barn - we still have to make good the area that it was standing on, which means finding five tons of topsoil and planting with grass seed but that will be an ongoing project. The worst is over!
I will post again soon - I have been crocheting so I have photos to post of the things I have made so far this year; not many because there aren't enough hours in the day or days in the week!
Thanks for reading and I hope you all have a lovely day! Me? I've just looked up at the ceiling here in my office - now where did all those cobwebs come from? I'd better go and deal with them!
Weekend reading - *There are a lot of elderflowers this year.* Hanno hasn't been well and during the week he was diagnosed with pneumonia, again. This is the second time in...
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