I have spent the last couple of days repointing an old stone wall and my arms don’t want to move any more. It’s not that difficult and I am really enjoying the work, unfortunately it is using muscles that are infrequently used, so they are protesting somewhat from over use. Tomorrow we should be finished and we can travel at ease on Thursday, enjoying the changing colours of autumn and the french countryside as we head from the Creuze across to the Dordogne.
Matty and I have struggled somewhat with the aesthetic taste of his client. Matty is a qualified stonemason of many years and we have a good idea of what a stone wall should look like when pointed. Strangely, the owner of the wall we were working on had slightly different ideas, he wanted it flat. After several demonstrations of possible finishes, adding more and more mortar, I decided to go overboard and smother a portion of the wall almost completely with the mix, as a joke. Amazingly we got a positive response and so continued the same way, covering most of the beautiful stonework to get the desired result. You can imagine the conversation that went on between Matty and I as the stones disappeared out of view. The client is happy and there is no accounting for taste.
We have been blessed with dry weather, a little cold and frosty to start with but comfortable and sunny thereafter. Treated too to the a huge midday meal with the family every day, we settle round the kitchen table with the fire blazing and eat and chat at a gentle pace for a good couple of hours before heading back for the afternoon, I rather like the pace of life here.
|the repaired wall waiting to be repointed|
|the required finish|
|autumn colour in the garden|
|Matty finishing the neighbours side in his preferred pointing style|