Sunday, 25 September 2011

"A long coming we had of it" - T.S. Eliot 
(From "The Journey of The Magi", not "The Wasteland"!)

The 2nd of October 2011 will be our 30th wedding anniversary.  On that day Peter and I will be driving through Switzerland on our way to Le Marche in Italy to start the build of what will be our new home.

Our dogs, Elsie and Pip, travel with Peter in the landrover and I tag along behind in my little automatic Honda.  Apart from the 70 cu. mtrs. (!) of  stuff we still have in storage in the UK, these two cars also carry all the worldly goods we took from the farm when we sold it in January.

"Il Gelso" from the title of this blog, is the name of the pile of bricks, once a farmhouse, which we are buying in Le Marche.  A gelso is a mulberry tree.  At present this mulberry tree is firmly rooted in the foundations of the house and one of the first tasks in the rebuilding process will be to uproot and replant it.  Paolo has already warned us that it will need a lot of watering and tlc when it is replanted; its metaphorical significance is not lost on us.   Paolo is our geometra, which, as far as I understand, translates as builder, architect, and "what I say goes" man on site.  His name will no doubt feature often in these blogs - what do you think?

Paolo has already drawn up the plans for the build and estimates it will take about 12 months to complete.  However in our own minds we are thinking more along 12m to move into the main building and a hopeful 18m for completion of all works.  What do you estimate?

Our friends, Chris and Brenda, whom we stayed with on holiday this summer, have agreed to let us stay in their annexe for the duration.  Their house is a 20 mins drive from Il Gelso.  They introduced us to Paolo who rebuilt their "rustico" for them.  It is now a beautiful house and they are still on friendly terms with Paolo, which is encouraging, or rather, less worrying for us at this stage.

 See pictures of our little building project below.  Worries, what worries?

 Well, to begin with there is no internet connection at present where we are staying, but in true pioneering spirit and being sensitive to our priorities, we have every confidence we'll have it installed very soon and that's when I'll post our next blog.

 Wagons ho!


  1. Halina
    So glad you have put pen to paper
    Will complement my skype calls with Peter very nicely.
    So very well done both of you - decision was suitably thought out and not unduly long is my impression. So yr sense of timing on the rebld looks rlstic. I am sure on the ground creative ideas may well pop up ( in both directions - to accelerate or the opposite by adding to the works....).
    Btw the tlc concern to the gelso shows immense sensitivity. I just got a message from it..."why move me, move the house...."

    Taq from ny

  2. Sono proprio contento della vostra decisione e vi faccio i migliori auguri per tutto il vostro progetto!! Speriamo di incontrarvi presto qui in Italia.
    Un abbraccio
    Federico Conti

  3. Ciao Lina! I found your blog while searching for people who have renovated homes in Le Marche. I'm writing an article for a magazine and wonder if you'd be willing to participate and be interviewed? If you'd be willing to talk about your renovations experience, please contact me vgfortney @ Grazie! :)