We did begin to wonder how bonkers the agents thought Brits were when it came to buying property.
We were looking for a largish place to accommodate the family should they all decide to come and visit together. One agent took us to a property that looked big enough on paper having had two largish extensions. On arrival we discovered that the two extensions were actually coming away from the original property. You could put a fist through the gaps in the walls on all floors. ‘Not a problem’ said the smiling agent, ‘just knock the extensions down’.
Funny how estate agents minds work. Why this one thought we would like to buy a property, knock two thirds of it down at more cost to us and end up with a property too small for our requirements, is still a puzzle..
Agents seemed not to worry about showing us round properties with ill relatives in bed either. Something we found most disconcerting. One gentleman was surrounded by enough medicines to start a chemist shop. When we entered the room we actually thought he was no longer in the same world as us. We were so glad when he moved. In another property a similar situation occurred and we felt like we were in a scene from the TV programme ‘allo, allo’. This time the grandmother insisted on getting out of bed to say ‘bonjour’. Her daughter tried to make her stay in bed but she was adamant. The agent, the owner of the property, her son, us two all not knowing what to do and her mother tottering round her bed in her nightie to greet everyone. All we needed was the knob on the bed to start flashing or two RAF chaps to jump out from behind a curtain!
We do have to make a special mention here of two lady agents who were lovely and made us laugh ….. for all the wrong reasons.
They took us out to view properties together. A safety thing we thought and quite sensible. They always used a Satnav. Again, quite sensible. They had named the male voice on the Satnav Jacque. Jacque quite often seem to go on strike and shut the Satnav down. We knew when it happened when cries of ‘Jacque, Jacque – talk to me Jacque’ floated over from the front of the car. This was normally followed by a lot of thumping of the Satnav. They obviously worked on the theory if all else fails hit it. Probably why the Satnav didn’t work in the first place. Going out with them bought a whole new meaning to the song ‘lost in France’.
We think that these two lasses should also be running for the French National team in the Olympics. They took us to see one property and inmate one wanted to see the cave (wine cellar) that was situated in the garden down a long flight of ancient steps that disappeared into the darkness. Our lovely agents were not so keen as they only had one torch but inmate one found a light switch that worked, so down we all went. The two girls didn’t stay long! Going down into the cave disturbed a colony of bats. At the sight of the bats the girls ran screaming back up the flight of steps closely followed by a large line of bats swooping over their heads. We hope they didn’t hear our laughter from outside the cave as they were really lovely lasses.
Originally from London, I moved with Inmate 1, to France in 2007. Home is now on the outskirts of the Medieval village of Plazac in the Perigord Noir region of the Dordogne.