Have fun in the centre of the lively French town of Riberac helping us with an eco stone wall (pierre apparente)

Country

France

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    Last activity

    20/10/2019

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  2019 

 Min stay requested: at least a week

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  • Description

    Description

    We are a couple who moved to the Dordogne in south-west France from the UK where we both worked in the legal profession. We renovated our large classical town house in the small French market town of Riberac which we run as a chambres d'hotes (B&B).

    We are easy going and love getting out and discovering new places and learning about the history and culture whenever we can. We both enjoy cooking, entertaining and discovering the wines and aperitifs of the region. We also enjoy watching an eclectic mix of film from French and Italian cinema to Nordic Noir. We have friends of many different nationalities so do a fair amount of entertaining. We also enjoy getting together with others to play traditional board games. We are gregarious, have a sense of humour and are always open to new ideas and fresh input.

    We spend a lot of time sourcing good quality seasonal food, organic where possible, and local wines to accompany what we cook. We are very fond of Asian cooking and experimenting with using the local ingredients to produce new and interesting culinary experiences and would be happy to pass on to you our practical knowledge which we have gleaned over several years.

    We can also offer some help with English or French language as one of us is a qualified teacher who works part-time in this capacity.

    Our project is the renovation of the interior of a small stone building which has been used for animals in times gone by. We have already renovated the upper part of this building with the help of our WAs. We are now looking for a WA who has experience with doing the French system of stone-walling called "pierre apparente" in order to finish the work at ground floor level. In this method stones are jointed together so that the finished effect is of a natural exposed stone wall. Other possible work involves woodwork such as making and/or hanging doors to a utility area as well as various other bits and pieces including some demolition work and taking things to the local tip. We are always keen to tap into the skills/experience of our WAs as we have found they have far more experience than we do and have come up with some great ideas of their own that we would never have thought of so for us it is definitely a two-way experience.

  • Type of help

    Type of help

    Building
    General Maintenance
    Help with Eco project

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    We are an easy going and flexible couple who love sharing food, wine and conversation. We are always interested in finding out about other people's cultures and have learned a lot from having WAs to stay with us. We left our life in the UK as it was too prescribed and regimented to come and live in rural France and we have never looked back. Each day here is a new experience and what you think is going to happen when you wake up in the morning rarely does; other events take over and each day brings new surprises. There is no 9.00-5.00 here but we work hard each day and then enjoy winding down and relaxing at the end of it. We enjoy being creative and welcome others who feel the same way. We have learned a lot in the course of the practical work we have done here and would be more than happy to pass on what we now know to others. We enjoy music, films, photography, going to wine tastings, visiting other towns and villages, making meals and having friends over for lunch or dinner. It is always a bonus for us if our WAs can introduce us to a meal or something culinary from their own home cooking as we are always excited about learning new ways and trying different things.

  • Help

    Help

    Working with stone - pointing stone walls with a lime mix in the French "pierre apparente' way
    Demolition of old roofing panels/taking debris to the tip
    Making/fitting doors to a utility cupboard

  • Languages spoken

    Languages spoken

    English, French and a little Spanish

  • Accommodation

    Accommodation

    Our Workawayers will have their own comfortable, wifi enabled, room with an en-suite shower room with WC. There are also bicycles for the use of WAs and plenty of time to discover and explore the nearby villages in the Dordogne. There are usually several other WAs working for other families in the town itself or nearby villages so there is an opportunity to meet up with others doing similar things. The house is situated in the town centre of Riberac and there are banks, bars, cafes and restaurants all within easy walking distance. We even have a small cinema which sometimes screens films in 'version originale' so not dubbed into French. Breakfast, lunch and an evening meal with wine or beer is provided. All our meals are freshly prepared using local ingredients where practical and we do not generally buy frozen food or use a microwave. Whilst we welcome the conviviality and sociability of shared meals and conversation with the WA(s) we do appreciate that both parties will value their own space at times so there will be no obligation to spend your free time with us and you will have as much autonomy as you like. You would be welcome to join in with us in our social events or not, as you choose.
    Please note that we are a non-smoking household but you are welcome to smoke outside in the courtyard if you wish.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    We are situated in the centre of Riberac, a small market town within a few minutes walk of the shops, banks, bars, restaurants and cafes etc. There is a large market on Friday mornings as well as a cinema, new public swimming and diving pools (skuba diving lessons available) and small, modern, state-of-the art gym. French lessons are available locally for a small fee. There are 5 supermarkets all within walking distance. The nearest train stations are at Angouleme (TGV) and Saint Astier, Mussidan, Chalais and Montpon (local trains). Although it's not necessary to have a car in Riberac it would be advantageous as it would enable you to see other places further afield such as Perigueux (45 mins), Bergerac (45 mins), Saint Emilion (60 mins) and Bordeaux (90 mins). We have bicycles available for your use and you will have plenty of time to discover and explore the nearby villages in the Dordogne where there are some lovely rides, both uphill and on the flat - one of these being to Aubeterre-sur-Dronne, one of the "plus beaux villages de France". We will be happy to collect you from Angouleme, St Astier, Mussidan, Chalais or Montpon train stations or Bergerac airport. Bordeaux which is 1.5 hrs drive from here also has an airport and TGV.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    Two

  • ...

    Hours expected

    5 hours per day 5 days a week.

WA Justin repairing the courtyard with a crushed stone mix
WA Cyril applying a coat of earth/clay plaster to the hemp & lime walls of our eco project
Hemp & lime being applied to old stone walls
WA Vitali prepping up the hemp & lime mix to be applied as a base coat to the walls of our eco-project
Riberac (5 mins) is home to a fantastic chocolate shop where everything is made 'in house'
Riberac (5 mins) is spoilt by its choice of lovely and diverse breads - we have 5 boulangeries in the town, all within walking distance from the house
Riberac's high street (5 mins) offers a wide range of shops, bars and cafes - a great place to chill on a warm, sunny evening
The Quayside at Bordeaux (1.5hrs) is a great place to chill on Sunday mornings, just 90 mins from our house.
Bergerac (45 mins) with its medieval centre & delicious wines, more organic here than in Bordeaux
Renaissance Perigueux (45 mins) with its wonderful winding old streets is full of bars & restaurants and other cultural activities.
Aubeterre (20 mins) one of the Plus Beaux Villages de France
Brantome (30 mins), a town full of history, situated on the beautiful river Drone, where you can canoe
One of our popular local cafes (5 mins) in Riberac, Cafe des Colonnes



Host ref number: 392476197643