Excavation a Success, and no Jail Sentences Yet.

Nameless tradesman with three month suspended prison sentence, his workers, and as of yesterday morning, Franck, have been going at the earthen floor of the cave (cellar) under Le Relais du Vieux Beaune something fierce.

We wanted to dig it out at least 30cm so that we had enough head room under the vaulted ceilings. At first the masons decided only to dig out about 17cm, professing that there was “too much rock” to go any further.

Franck, never one to take “no” for an answer, decided the best way to convince them otherwise was to go down himself armed with his trusty shovel and pick and show them that it was indeed possible.

As the tradesmen’s manly pride could not allow Franck to outwork them, it has been a shoveling, picking, hauling free-for-all ever since. Now we have more than our 30 cm dug out as you can see in the photo above (Franck figures we got about 35 cm). He was quite a sight every time he ventured upstairs to the apartment – hair sticking straight up with sweat, breathing hard, and covered from head to toe in fragrant Burgundy dirt.

Said dirt had to be dragged up the stairs to the daylight via these wooden planks, where it was dumped on the truck they parked across the street. Quite a job apparently, at least it looked that way every time I peeked down and wished the workers a rather feeble “bon courage.

It was a thirsty job too…Franck’s parents looked after the girls this morning and found it hilarious when Franck emerged from his subterranean kingdom to fetch the box of wine glasses and a bottle of Claire’s finest that he keeps handily beside the front door of the apartment. It was only 10:15am but apparently high time for a “petite breuvage“. We learned this essential rule while renovating La Maison de la Vieille Vigne – good wine is the best motivator of all.

And tommorrow more on garcon ou fille. I had my seven month ultrasound yesterday and it was, shall we say, most revealing…