Susie Kelly and her husband Terry had long dreamed of owning a home in France, but ironically it wasn't until they were facing homeless penury in England that they realized their dream. With five dogs, two parrots and their elderly horses, they moved to an old farmhouse in the Poitou-Charentes region with dirt floors, no water and a primitive electricity supply. hile Terry was back in England trying to support them all, Susie Kelly contended with a homicidal gas cooker at the bottom of the garden, burst pipes, a guinea fowl that turned somersaults and bit people on the shin and a constant stream of people turning up at her door with needs of their own. Sometimes the enormity of renovating a house with insufficient funds and little help seemed overwhelming. She saw her husband infrequently. Their English neighbour was imprisoned on drug-smuggling charges. And when Terry developed a condition that brought him close to death, the dream threatened to turn into a nightmare. here were times when Susie Kelly seemed to be taking two steps backward, but the kindness of the local community and the tranquillity of the landscape inspired them to make a new life for themselves and their an
Susie Kelly emigrated from London to Kenya with her parents at the age of seven, and endured a convent education until she was expelled for refusing to devote her Saturday mornings to making doll's clothes, as she preferred to go horse riding. In 1975 she returned to live in England with a husband and two small children. Since then she has acquired a second and much better husband, a fine son-in-law and four gorgeous grandchildren - Catherine, Jamie, Jasmine and Leonie. Home is an ancient farmhouse, in the process of renovation, in southwest France, shared with a menagerie of goats, horses, dogs, cats, parrots and fish. She is the author of Best Foot Forward and Two Steps Backward, and A Perfect Circle.