All Year: No
Host ID: 91200
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Last Updated: March 17, 2019
English couple, living in beautiful, rural France for over 17 years, looking for help with gardening (large, vegetable garden), cutting and clearing of old trees, help with building work and general maintenance of our 50 acre property.
We live in a lovely, restored farmhouse surrounded by approximately 50 acres of fields and woods, a stream and a little lake. We have a large second home on our property, also lovingly restored, which is rented out, fully, during the high season, to guests. There is a stunning, large swimming pool for the guests and our use.
We try to keep the land and gardens looking as beautiful as possible for us and our guests but the upkeep can become extremely time-consuming for just 2 people. We would really like some help with the gardening and outside maintenance in return for being able to spend time in this truly stunning part of South West France.
We are looking for up to 2 people (ideally a couple) to stay with us for a minimum of 6 nights. We ask for up to 5 hours help per day, 5 days per week.
A driving license is essential. If you can come with your own transport, fantastic, if not, it is possible we may be able to loan you a car. If not, you can hire bikes.
I have a large potager (vegetable garden). I need help to remain on top of all the weeding and heavy lifting that is required to keep the potager in shape over the summer. Daily weeding and watering is required here. In addition we have a flower garden which requires weeding and there are several other areas which require daily attention and watering.
We have several animals including 2 dogs, 2 cats and several chickens. The chickens need cleaning out once or twice a week and the (extremely friendly but very energetic) dogs love going on regular walks.
My husband does regular grass cutting, but there are many heavier outside maintenance projects which need to be done during the stay. For those who have previous chain-sawing / tree-cutting experience, we would really appreciate the clearing of some of our extensive woodland . There are fallen trees that need to be cut up and there are trails that need to be cleared so they are more accessible. In addition, we constantly need brush-cutting done, along the stream and in many other areas. The more you would like to do, the more we can find for you!
I am a qualified English teacher (TEFL), and during the summer, from time to time, I host French students (one at a time) who stay with us for a week on an English immersion basis. We are also very social and our Helpers will be included in our activities in our home, meeting new people from all over.
We have a very comfortable en-suite guest bedroom available to our Helpers. It has a double bed and, therefore, as mentioned above, we would ideally like to host a couple. The bedroom is part of our 2nd house, but has a separate, private entrance. There is plenty of storage in the room and there is also a mini-fridge. The bathroom has a large shower, WC and sink.
The guest bedroom will obviously be spotless on our Helpers' arrival but the daily cleaning of the room will be their own responsibility.
We have recently installed a new internet system which works very well in our house, however, the speeds may be slightly reduced in our Helpers' room, in which case access to the internet will be available to our Helpers in the main house.
Our Helpers will be welcome to take all meals with us, unless they wish to eat out from time to time or at a different time from us (in which case, they will need to prepare their own meal). We tend to have a light lunch and our main meal is in the evening. Whilst we eat lots (and lots!) of fruit and vegetables, eggs, rice, etc, we are not vegetarian.
Please note that our paying guests have priority over the swimming pool, but if they are out, then the pool is also available for use by our Helpers assuming correct observance of our pool 'rules'.
We do not allow any smoking in or around our property.
The Dordogne, in South West France, and particularly the Perigord Noir, the area in which we are located, is so full of interesting sites that it would be impossible to visit them all during even a lengthy visit. The area is particularly well known for its 'Pre-history' and the best known site here is Lascaux 4 located in Montignac, a 25 minute drive from us and which is definitely worth a visit.
The Dordogne has hundreds of Chateaux ranging from ancient ruins to beautifully restored buildings, many of which are virtually on our doorstep. There are markets every day and night markets where you can buy your food from the various stalls and sit down at long communal tables to eat your meal - you will have the opportunity here to talk to locals and other visitors from all over the world. There are musical concerts, again, almost every evening and in terms of outdoor activities there is canoeing, horse-riding, cycling, walking, swimming in the pristine rivers, zip-wiring, etc, etc, etc.
I am a very keen cook and amongst other things, I enjoy making preserves. I am happy to share this knowledge.
One thing that is not available is 'night-life'. The area is most suited to people who enjoy nature and outdoor activities, visiting historical sites, good food and peace and tranquility. If you are looking for an exciting, 'party' time, then the Dordogne is definitely not for you!