We're Anne and Crosbie, ex-UK based rat racers, now happily living the rural life in beautiful South West France with our horses, dogs and bees! We also always have gardening and land management type work, painting around the property and horses to look after. We offer self-catering accommodation in a self-contained gite with all facilities. We have found that our work and accommodation suits couples or friends who are workawaying together very well.
Anne is an ex Human Resources and Marketing professional and is happy to offer advice on job hunting and interviews in English. She now teaches English as a second language. She will also happily share her knowledge about horses, bees and wildlife and looks forward, at the same time, to learning about these subjects from like minded people. Crosbie is an IT professional specialising in software development and trouble-shooting for PCs. We are both politically and culturally aware people who enjoy and good discussion putting the world to rights!
We would welcome help with work inside and out, depending on the weather. Outside you can help us with gardening, land maintenance, wood gathering, chopping and stacking and some outdoor painting. Inside, some painting and decorating if the weather is poor. I love my horses, but am also happy to take a break from their daily routine if you'd like to take this on - two cheeky ponies, and a magnificent spotted draft horse. I like to take them for a drive if the weather permits and with help, this is more fun :-)
We offer a self-catered experience in our independent two bedroomed gite, with some shared meals ! We stock the gite with food and drink, which you can supplement of course, and we offer shared meals as and when depending on what suits you and us. (Anne is a vegetarian, so if you enjoy cooking veggie meals, she's happy to turn the kitchen over to you from time to time too!)
We ask you to respect the fact that the gite is our living, and to treat it well when you're in it and leave it clean and tidy.
We're nestled in a secluded valley in this beautiful and unspoilt part of the French Pyrenees. It is just the spot if you're looking for somewhere peaceful to live life a bit differently for a while. We're located between the bustling market town of Boulogne-sur-Gesse and its pretty neighbour, Castelnau-Magnoac, renowned for its history as the founding base for the French resistance in the second world war.
A great place to read or paint and an ideal base for more active pastimes. There are endless lanes and tracks to walk, run or cycle and, for the very adventurous, a local airfield with flying lessons and parachute jumps! The mountains provide scope for more serious sport including hillwalking, trekking, white water rafting and, in the winter, dog-sledding, skiing and snowboarding. We have pushbikes you can borrow.
For bird watchers the Ornithological Reserve at Puydarrieux is just 15 minutes drive away and has 200 recorded species for your spotter book! Here in the garden we regularly see Hoopoes, Black Redstarts and have Black Kites circling above.
We carriage drive with our horses and with our draft horse occasionally do land work and logging, something we enjoy doing and which you can help with if you like!
We sometimes have students to stay - usually French young people to learn English - so if you're interested as teaching as a string to your bow, you are welcome to join in with the lessons by arrangement.
Crosbie is a software engineer and enjoys the odd computer game if you want a break from the outdoors!
Finally, we have three well maintained working pinball machines on site - tournaments a must!
There is little public transport to speak of, so you need to want to be tucked away. The nearest shop and bar are 4kms and the nearest towns - with more shops and bars and restaurants - 7kms. We can lend you a cycle!
There is a good and very cheap coach service from Toulouse to our nearest town, from where we're happy to pick you up.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
Five hours per day 5 days a week - but we're not minute counters!