We’re back in Castillonnès and it feels like we’ve come home. We’ve spent the week catching up with old friends and going back to places we love.
This time Damon and I have come with our friends Keeley and Fiona. Keeley owns the house we stay in here.
It hadn’t been used since late last summer and it showed – it was dusty and in need of an airing. We gave it the undivided attention of the vacuum cleaner and an array of cleaning products on our first morning.
After that, the fun could really start.
On Wednesday, we went for lunch at Le Bistrot de Malfourat in Monbazillac, just south of Bergerac. This is the sister restaurant to the Michelin-starred La Tour des Vents.
It offers a less expensive take on the kind of top-class food served in its neighbour but with equally fantastic views across the Dordogne countryside.
“I hope she gets a quick sale. However, I also hope that, for now, we are just saying ‘au revoir’ to what has become our home from home”
On Friday, we went back to an old favourite, Au Fil de l’Eau in Couze-Saint-Front. I could eat their filet de bœuf façon Périgourdine – that is, served with pan-fried foie gras – every time.
For both meals, our friend Jenny and her partner, Barry, joined us. Jenny was also kind enough to have us round for dinner when we arrived after the long drive from Dieppe.
We’re heading back to the UK tomorrow. When we’ll be back in Castillonnès again, I don’t know.
Keeley has been talking this week about putting the house up for sale. I know property in France can take a long time to sell – especially by UK standards. At home, if you haven’t had an offer within a couple of weeks, it’s generally because the asking price is too high.
Here, houses can take years to sell, even if they are keenly priced.
Of course, if Keeley goes ahead, I hope for her sake that she bucks the trend and gets a quick sale. Secretly, however, I also hope that, for now, we are just saying ‘au revoir’ to what has become our home from home.