Last week was my birthday. Obviously, it was a rather quiet affair - not that I have ever done big parties or extravagent holidays to celebrate, but a nice meal out would have been nice... Unfortunately all bars, restaurants etc have been shut in France since October and look unlikely to reopen any time soon, … Continue reading 2020 – a write-off? No way!
We really did think we had cracked this whole vehicle import thing. We had sorted the insurance, passed the controle technique, obtained the quitus fiscal and submitted all the necessary paperwork via the ANTS website. Now all we had to do was wait...
Life ambles along in our little corner of rural France, and although I don't usually pay much attention to what is happening in the outside world I had been aware of the outbreak of a new virus, Coronavirus COVID-19, in Wuhan and heard accounts of more reported cases in Europe. But I don't think anyone … Continue reading The new normal
Get involved. Meet people. Find some hobbies and interests. If you move to a new area, wherever that may be, in whatever country, the advice is always the same. If you want to feel at home you have to put some effort into 'doing stuff' and meeting new people. That's how you make friends. Ever … Continue reading Lending a hand
Now, those of you who live in France will know that the French protect their work-life balance quite jealously. Thus, if an organisation or business is open on a Saturday, not only will it almost definitely be shut on Sunday, but quite likely at least part of Monday will be taken as compensatory leisure time … Continue reading Operation Kitchen Collection 3 days away…and no van!
The time has come. We’re ready to tackle installing a new kitchen at the mill. We’ve found the kitchen we want, designed it all and ordered what we need. That took quite a while in itself, but that was the easy (and fun) bit. Having looked at furniture and appliances in France, investigated the choice … Continue reading Take delivery of the new kitchen – sounds simple but…
If you have ever lived in France or know anyone that does, you will probably have heard many complaints of how the French just loooove their bureaucracy. I have friends, both French and English who constantly moan about the poor customer service and ‘jobs-worth’ attitude of most French officials. Everything has to be done in … Continue reading Fighting the system
Our Christmas New Year break at the mill was never going to be a lazy one, was it? We had originally intended to set to and rip the upstairs bathroom out. I had even brought over the new floor tiles that I wanted to put down. We had managed to strip the heavily embossed blue … Continue reading T’is the season to be…FREEZING!
On Thursday morning we left early, not even sure that anyone else would be there. The meeting was being held at the office of the vendor’s notaire, about half an hour away. Waiting outside, I felt sick with nerves. Bang on 9 o’clock, Maître G, Chris and Gérard all arrived and we were shown into … Continue reading Coming out the other side
It seemed like ages since we had come back from France in August but the time had not been wasted. Plans, bookings, lists and more lists - I AM the epitome of a list maniac. But now everything was happening with military precision. We’d caught the overnight ferry to arrive in Avoise first thing on … Continue reading Ready to go