“We were enjoying our fourth day staying at a very cold Chateau Logis in Beautiran. It was the end of winter after all so one could hardly expect summer warmth. Due to our plans to return to Holland via London straight after lunch the contract needed to be signed that morning at 9am in the real estate office in Langoiran where we had first seen all those properties in the window.

The Paradise Rescued #B1ockOne Cabernet Franc vineyard overlooked by the old Cardan church.

The Paradise Rescued #B1ockOne Cabernet Franc vineyard overlooked by the old Cardan church. It was worth “crossing the foggy bridge”.

The Bordeaux region is famous for its early morning fog. The cold water flowing down the river Garonne comes from the Pyrenees and when it mixes with warmer water coming off the vast sandy warmer forests of Les Landes, a particularly dense fog is created. It was a very cold morning that day and as we drove from down the other side of the river, turned left at Portets and headed towards the river to make the crossing, only the bridge could be seen above the top of the fog – almost floating. A strong image I will never forget, and one that signified to me that something important was about to happen.

I had expected a more Anglo Saxon approach; exchange of contracts by mail, lawyers at arm’s length. No, not in France, the vendors’ lawyer act for both parties and so it shall be!

Did Monsieur have a deposit?

No Monsieur did not!

In fact I had barely a couple of thousand Francs in my pocket plus a credit card that didn’t, in those days, work very well in France! Nor was Monsieur expecting the question! Monsieur Stannard was operating on pure excitement and a couple of unfounded ideas as to how this would all work.

Either way, the deal was done! By 10 o’clock on a cold Sunday morning, the Compromis (Contract Agreement) was signed and I had a couple of weeks to try and figure out a plan as to how to get a deposit to France and then how to pay for the rest. It wasn’t as if there weren’t sufficient monthly funds to pay for a mortgage, just there wasn’t any sort of a plan to actually get one or any thought as to how one might be obtained!

From Cabbage Patch to Cabernet Franc - the Paradise Rescued story... so far.

From Cabbage Patch to Cabernet Franc – the Paradise Rescued story… so far.

Signing a bit of paper was easy enough; making it all happen might be very different!”

The above is an excerpt out of “From Cabbage Patch to Cabernet Franc” by David Stannard, due for release shortly. Look out for the hashtag #CP2CF.

Do you remember a moment in time when your life specifically changed? Do you recall that nervous instant, the apprehension that went with it and the fear about whether it was the right move? Most special moments in our lives occur in this way. If it’s for real, then yes; it’s a big deal. That morning (eventually) changed my life forever and in a way that I could never have foreseen. Today, I can not imagine what I might be doing if it wasn’t for our special little villa in Cardan, Bordeaux.

Have you crossed that bridge yet? Your bridge? More coming soon in the book… #CP2CF