A diverse offering twixt the interesting, the unusual, and the amusing.
Friday, 29 January 2016
Things will change.
My two neighbours, on whom I rely heavily, have no young family members who wish to continue farming. My nearest neighbour has a daughter who has become an accountant, and has never shown any interest in the farm. My other neighbour has two children neither of whom will take the baton; and in fact she doesn't even want them to.
So what will become of these farms? The only future I can see for them is to be bought by English or Dutch families, and be used for either breeding horses or some sort of holiday centres. Certainly there's little appetite for farming around here.
For years I've been trying to buy a small parcel of woodland, so that we could eventually become as self-sufficient as possible, but succession laws are still making this difficult. If my neighbours were not there to cut and deliver wood every winter, we could easily find ourselves in a difficult situation. Our house needs to be heated from about November to May.
I don't wish to sound morbid, but I quite expect myself to expire before either of my neighbours, so I could easily just shrug my shoulders and say to my heirs 'you'll have to sort it out by yourselves', but I'm not like that. I've spent the past 40-ish years trying to create a tiny haven of healthy, eco-friendly, and economic living, and all this could change if we were no longer able to buy quite large stocks of wood each year. It is a major element of our lives.
I blame myself for the situation, as I should have bought myself a home that had everything required to sustain my desired lifestyle, but we never get everything right. In an area such as this we rely heavily on wood, as do the farmers on selling it.
The only alternative that I can foresee, is to smother the place with pig-ugly solar panels, and heat our home with electricity. This might be OK up at the barn, but not here.
A solution will arise, but for the moment I can't envisage it; unless of course we can buy that bit of woodland.
The difference between an optimist and a pessimist, is that the optimist enjoys himself whilst waiting for the inevitable! I AM that optimist!
This is a daily, optimistic, 'photos and comments' blog. I make no judgements (only occasionally), just notes. If you wish to comment in any way at all, please feel free. Everything and everyone (except the obdurate and dictatorial) is very welcome.
I was born just south of London, but for the past 46 years I've lived in S W France. I am a painter by profession, and writer by desire. Lady Magnon and I live in an ancient cottage, in a tiny village, in perfectly tranquil countryside. We have a vegetable garden called 'Haddock's' (this may crop up from time to time), plenty of fruit trees, and a view that takes the breath away; we also have a Border Collie called Billy. I try to treat our planet with respect, and encourage others to do likewise (without preaching).
Contentment is a glass of red, a plate of charcuterie, and a slice of good country bread. Perfect!