First of all a Very Happy New Year to you all !   I’m hoping for world tolerance – yeah, good luck with that – and fewer poor dogs in need of help.  Well, a girl can dream can’t she ?!

Looking back at last year’s January News I see that I was disappointed not yet to be in the house for Christmas but delighted that Ernst had not smoked for two weeks.  One year on I am thrilled to say that we spent our first Christmas in my dream country kitchen, woodburner blazing, Christmas tree twinkling, corks a- popping, friends clinking glasses and Betsy my cooker, with whom I have an on/off friendship, behaving beautifully.   As for Ernst ?  Well he still hasn’t had a cigarette since last December.  Brilliant !

Off course I’m still waiting for things that had been promised for Christmas, i.e., guest bedroom, front terrace, and porch, but I did get the kitchen lights (which had been purchased in March) and a door leading from the kitchen to the middle room to avoid us still having to go outside to get to bed.  Well, actually, I got the door but we can’t use it yet because of the Christmas cards.  Not having faith that the door would be in situ I hung Christmas cards across the space, which fell down if the door was opened so in the end I gave up and I and guests braved the cold to get to the bathroom !

As for the porch, this is so that we have somewhere to leave boots and wood before coming into the kitchen.  Well, everywhere we hear that people are looking desperately for work so I was naively thinking that it would be easy to get someone to build a smallish porch to our spécifications.  I KNOW this goes against Ernst’s grain because he likes to do everything himself , but I am running out of patience now.  We contacted three people.  One was a company specialising in porches who came when they said but proposed more of a very posh conservatory at a very posh price.  Thanks but no thanks.  The second guy works alone, couldn’t really understand what we had in mind so I think has shelved us.  The third, the partner of a friend came round about six weeks before Christmas, said he could do it in time then went on to tell us what we should have, which was nothing like what we wanted.  We are still waiting for his “within a week” estimate !!!  Now there is no urgency so it is on Ernst’s ‘to do’ list.  I know he will do it better than anyone, I just wanted it sooner rather than very much later !

So, a new year, new beginnings and a few changes for Poorpaws.  Nothing very much and nothing that will change the ongoing work that Danielle and I do.  By the way, we homed 104 dogs last year !!  104 is an enormous number for just two people so we are really pleased.  What changes ?  Well, I have been doing dog rescue now for thirteen years and get tremendous satisfaction from it.  But over those years there have inevitably been dogs who, for some reason or another have never been adopted so have stayed with us and will do so until the end of their lives.  We have 15 such dogs who live in parks with the tiny oldies sleeping in our bedroom and in the now defunct mobile home.  This means that we are full to bursting and cannot take in any more.  Regulars to the website will know that I mention Danielle a lot.  Danielle is in Castlnau Montratier and many of you know her well already.  She has worked as a cruelty inspector for the Brigitte Bardot Foundation and for the S.P.A.  She does kennelling to help with expenses and, obviously rehoming.  She currently has 25 dogs looking for homes.  Having much larger and more parks than me, Danielle will now take in abandoned dogs when she can and give the best advice.  The Poorpaws website will continue (if only to enable me to let off steam now and again – or again and again !) and the Adoptions page will show the dogs seeking homes, the difference being that the dogs will be chez Danielle.  For those not speaking French (people I mean, not dogs) I will always be available to take you to Danielle’s and help with translation.

Another change is that I will no longer be selling greetings cards at the market on a Saturday at Montaigu de Quercy BUT and this is a big BUT, the cards will still be available at the English Library in Montaigu which is open on Saturday mornings and Wednesday mornings and afternoons.  The Library is situated next to the Office de Tourism at Montaigu.  I have loved my five years at the market and have enjoyed meeting so many people.  However, it really is no longer worth the time and petrol, plus it frees me up to do more rota duties at the library which I love.

Fundraising will continue with our ever popular book sales and clothes sales.  The money raised will, as usual be split between cancer research and ‘dog rescue’.  The latter meaning that Poorpaws will take what is needed to care for the fifteen dogs and to help people in a difficult situation with care for their dogs and be split between Danielle’s refuge ‘La mere aux Betes’ and other needy organisations – Twilight being one.

So, there you have it, I’m retired officially now and going through the joy of trying to get my French pension.  God love’em don’t the French just adore their paperwork ?!

Before I sign off a HUGE thank you to all of you who sent donations for pressies for the dogs, you are just so kind and the dogs had special goodies on Christmas Day ……….and worming tablets on New year’s Day !!

One little giggle,  I was on the way to the vets (for a change !) on New Year’s Eve and saw a little dog frantically running up and down the road in Anglars Juillac.  I stopped and she stopped and sat in the middle of the road.  She wasn’t a puppy as I had thought but was a small Jag Terrier.  Now I am very wary of those little dogs, courageous little blighters who take on sangliers without turning a hair.  Anyway she had a collar with name and ‘phone number and let me put her in the car.  I took her up to the vets (in Prayssac, the best in the land) who recognised the name and were able to confirm that she lived in ….Anglars Juillac !!  I left her there and Jackie the receptionist said she would tell the owners that the dog was found on the Montcuq road !!

Well I’m suffering from Festive Fatigue now and keen to get on with 2015.  Did I tell you last year that I was not going to buy any television series on dvd for a year ?  Well I made it so am now happily compiling a list I need to catch up on.  This year I’m on a no clothes buying and no chocolate eating mission – good luck with that too !!

Have a good one !

Sue x





Categorized as News