Masses of rampaging butterflies invade stomachs: news at 09:30… or that’s when I was meant to be meeting with a real-estate agent to put in an offer on a property. How do you play this house-buying game? How much do you offer? Is the asking price what they want, or is it an extra percentage based on them believing that you’ll believe that they inflate it and then you’ll offer them much lower knowing that they’ll ask for more knowing that you’ll offer an in-between amount letting them accept what they wanted in the first place? The people want the house, the real-estate agents want to play the game.

Evening view across the Dordogne of Limeuil

Surprise, surprise; the agent is delayed. Half an hour sitting in the foyer is plenty of time to chuckle at the faded and dull print on the wall. Any other time and I wouldn’t even have noticed it, but after ’s visit, and having seen the original of Claude Monet’s Vètheuil, I realised how bright and colourful the original is, and how bad the print looked. The original reminded me of my photo of Limeuil in , I guess there’s a slight resemblance…

Half an hour of form-filling, sign here, sign there, initial this, initial that. “I think you have a typo on this,” says I. “Surely this should say “excepting weekends,” not “expecting weekends”. “Hmm, oh yes, so it should” is the reply. There’s another impressionist print on the wall, I can’t remember what its called, a view of a house from the garden, a tree across the door.

Now we sit and wait, twiddling our collective thumbs while the agent and the vendor play out their next move in the game. Where’s the chess clock?