Dreamy Dordogne

After an extended beach break, we decided to head off to the countryside and try our first Workaway experience. We contacted a few in the area and had a reply from the lovely Lucy, her daughter and their menagerie. Looking at the map I realised we were still over 350km away. so we took a couple of days to bimble inland towards Saint Jean D’Ataux.

Stopover at Mlle on way to Workaway
Old church in Villebois-Lavalette which had a secret herb garden
Bugs on herbs!!
This was called Birdcage Walk – very appropriate as I’d just finished reading a book with the same title – but set in Bristol.

We took 2 days to get there via Melle and Villebois-Lavalette.

I have purposely not put any photos of Lucy or her daughter as she told us she had been subject to much online harassment and stalking, mainly via Facebook. I asked if it was okay to show the animals which she consented to.

After driving across fields and fields of sunflowers and vineyards we arrived and parked up Gurty next to the stable where 2 of the retired horses were living. In the menagerie were:

  • 4 rescue horses – Topee (34), Jazz (26), Mandy (who I sang to on a daily basis) and Tina the Shetland pony.
  • 2 dogs – Border Terrrier Lassoo and a Rumanian mongrel rescue Orio
  • 3 cats which we only saw from a distance at night
  • Onchow the goat – who has huge horns and loved to butt
  • 2 chickens
  • 3 guinea pigs
  • 1 rabbit
  • Moonstone the parrot who loved to call ‘Orio come here’ much to the dog’s confusion. I’m just hoping he didn’t pick up any swear words from whilst we were there!!

We stayed for a week house-sitting, shovelling poo and petting ponies / all the animals, a bit different for the usual 9-5! Unfortunately whilst we were there Topee caught an infection and went to the big stable in the sky. Traumatic to be involved in, but part of nature and life experience. Lucy had new workawayers lined up, so we left in search of a last French beach before heading into Spain.

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