143 x 223 x 29mm
A Year With The Innocents Abroad.
In the bestselling tradition of Peter Mayle and Chris Stewart, a brand-new travel writer brings us this hilarious story of how one couple set out with a dream of moving to France, and got far more than they ever bargained for.
'Home & Dry In Normandy' is the first of two books following the adventures of George and Donella East as they try to realise their dream of surviving a year living off the land and their wits in France. After months of property-hunting, the couple arrive at The Mill of the Flea, a dilapidated and long-abandoned eighteenth-century water mill set in ten acres of fields, woods, streams and mud in the heart of the magical Cotentin peninsula of Normandy. There, the Easts set about renovating the farmhouse and tiny mill cottage - and trying to restore their financial fortunes.
As they struggle to adapt to a very different life and culture, the Easts find themselves with an unofficial estate manager as Rene Ribet moves on to their land in his ancient caravan. Rene will, he says, help them learn the ways of the countryside while returning the mill to its former glory. To the innocents abroad he appears a godsend. To the locals in the nearby village of Nehou, however, Rene Ribet is known as The Fox of Cotentin, notorious for his wily hare-brained schemes.
A series of doomed projects ensues including bottling the waters of their polluted stream, crayfish farming and holding metal-detecting weekends to uncover the long-dead miller's legendary hoard of gold. Financial disaster looms for the unwitting couple but, over the coming months, as the Easts struggle to make a go of living the good life, an unlikely and enduring friendship develops. Financial success eludes the couple, but as the seasons pass, the couple finally realise that the real treasure has been around them all the time.