Sunday 02 June – June, so soon!

Last week’s blog predicted a number of things, some of which came true!

The first was that we were expecting a delivery of breeze blocks on Monday for the team to continue with the pool build.  They duly arrived and the project continues to progress.

The breeze blocks were laid over a couple of, very wet, days up to the level required for the terrace and M. Guilpain, the pool builder, returned to rearrange what was becoming a snake’s wedding of the tubing and pipework.

I mentioned last week that the foundations provided a better visual of the footprint of the elements of the pool but, actually, the breeze block foundations do that even more.  You can now see what will be the plant room for the pool, the pool house, and the size of the terrace.

The next steps, which we hope will happen next week, are for the landscaper to return and fill the spaces in the foundation walls to the correct height before the larger concrete pad is laid that will be the base for the terrace and pool house.

One of the statements I made in last week’s blog was that we would soon see the pool house start to come out of the ground.  However, we have now agreed with the builder that once the concrete slab is laid we will pause the build for the duration of the summer months so as not to create excessive noise for our guests.

Because of the poor weather we have experienced this winter and spring, the builder has a number of other jobs that haven’t progressed as much as he would have hoped so he is more than happy to focus on these while we have guests in the gîtes.  But not until the concrete is laid …

In last week’s blog I also said that I would be able to level the lawn with some of the large pile of soil we have generated from the pool.  Last Monday, I started to do this manually so I could also remove the stone and knotweed root before moving it.  However, after a morning’s work, I realised I needed a lot more soil moved than is sensible to do by hand.  As we are expecting the digger back next week (hopefully), I will ask him to distribute the soil and I can then level and de-stone / root it.

The only other major project I have managed to make any progress on is more hedge cutting.  There are still a couple of hedges I hadn’t managed to trim for a year, one of which was the Granary garden’s boundary with Hent Gorreker.

When we arrived this was entirely overgrown privet.  Sadly, in the last few years we have suffered from honey fungus in the soil which privet is extremely susceptible to and causes its death.  A few years ago, we had a large gap in part of the hedge with the first privet plants dying back which we filled with our new favourite hedging plant – griselinia.

This is now well established and has almost filled the space.  We have pre-empted the death of the remainder of the privet by underplanting with griselinia cuttings most of which have survived and started to grow – despite us not controlling the weed growth under the hedge.

So far, I have cut the Hent Gorreker side of the hedge and cleared the weeds under the hedge on both sides.  Tomorrow I will have to finish the job by cutting on the Granary side.

Today we did manage a Sunday stroll.  This time, we returned to the east side of the Morlaix estuary and started our circuit in the village of Saint Samson.  We hadn’t walked most of the route before although a small section was on a route we had done a number of years ago.

We love our location for lots of reasons including that it opens up almost the entirety of the Finistère coast and it is so varied.  The rock formations on much of it are amazing, not all of them look terribly natural(!), and some of the beaches could easily be confused for the Mediterranean, Caribbean or any tropical location.

This route gave us good views of the Cairn de Barnenez, somewhere we still haven’t visited but intend to, which is one of the oldest and largest megalithic monuments in Europe.

For seafood lovers, this part of the world has lots of oyster farms including a few in or near Térénez (a different Térénez from that by the bridge to the Crozon peninsula) including the Oysters of Sterec.

The forecast is looking great for next week, something I can’t often say, so we should be able to make some good progress.