02 October 2007


Renovating a house in a hill village is no easy task. All the materials need to be brought up from Menton or Nice. All rubble needs to be removed and taken down the valley. In the old days, of course, donkeys were used. See the donkey track from Sainte Agnès to Menton - a two-hour journey.

Nowadays, renovation means the workmen need to walk up and down the narrow, steep streets, moving materials, little by little. In addition, if scaffolding is used, then inevitably you'll need your neighbour's house to provide some of the support. Hopefully you get on with your neighbour!

And the cost of all this - well, it's not cheap - and it's slow.


  1. Your comments make an interesting photo so much better by giving us background and insight into what an ordinary activity really entails. Hats off to Peter Mayle.

  2. I guess this is the down-side of living so close together. You must be able to get along with the neighbors.

  3. And so worthwhile to do, when one considers the history and beauty preserved.

  4. Great photo! And wonderful information.

    Thanks for visiting my NorthBayPhoto blog.

  5. Bonjour,

    Ou est Menton exactement en France? Il ressemble une ville tres ancien. C'est tres interessant, la ville et vos photos!

    Je suis de Singapour et voici mon blog:

  6. That's a house. A real house. Old and strong, made out of long lasting materials. You can't find that around here.

  7. I used to live in such a small village in the South of France. Very pretty indeed, but so uneasy when it comes to get fuel in the house, bring up logs for the fire or the shopping!! Well captured.

    Thanks for visiting the hague photo blog!

  8. Your photo and comments bring to mind some of the same things I mentioned to my husband while we were in Europe last month. . . It amazes me that hundreds of years ago, people were able to build multi-story houses without the benefit of modern machinery and know-how. . . .that they had to haul materials up hills or mountains either by hand or by donkey. . .AND! Those buildings last longer than some of the newer structures!!

  9. You know I was wondering about that just the other day as I looked at that picture with the man strolling down the cobblestone street with his bottle of wine :)

    How on earth do they repaint those buildings and fix the roof if it starts leaking...or change the gutters...?

    I guess there's always a challenge to living in paradise!


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