From Ty Hir you can often hear our neighbour's cows lowing, the sheep bleating in the field down the lane, or the sound of the local cockerels greeting the dawn floating across the valley. If the wind is in the right direction, peacocks can sometimes be heard calling urgently to each other at the farm at the back of the cottages.
As we tend to take our breaks in Brittany in spring or the autumn, we also have been subjected to the delights of the odours associated with muck spreading. Fortunately, this usually doesn't last long and carrying a sprig of lavender can help mask the smell should the need arise.
I can enjoy the views over the surrounding fields to the front and side of the gites from the velux window without fear of being spotted in a state of dishabille. Sometimes, if I'm lucky, I will spot a hare or stoat scurrying along the drive.
For the past two years sparrows have nested in a hole in the front wall of the Petit Longere. They get most indignant when we chose to linger on the terrace, sitting in the conifer opposite scolding us for interfering with their routine. They eventually realise that we really aren't a threat and recommence their frequent trips to the nest. We are lucky to have these cheeky little chappies nesting at Ty Hir as sparrow numbers are in decline in the UK sadly.
If we are not spending the day working or relaxing in our large garden, we have a lovely walk right on our doorstep, the 'circuit des passerelles, or the 'footpath of wooden bridges'.
The trail is 7.5 km long and crisscrosses the tranquil river Ellez, passing through rolling countryside. Some of our guests have even completed the circuit on our mountain bikes!
From time to time we have glimpsed the iridescent blue flash of a kingfisher fishing. Ragondins ( coypu ), sometimes mistaken for an otter until more closely observed, can also be found occasionally. They are considered a pest in France as the were introduced from South America but we still like to see them.
Life's simple pleasures are the best!
À votre santé or yec'hed mat as they say in Brittany!