It’s been 7 weeks since we finally got the keys to our place in France and it has in some ways gone very quickly but when I look back at all we’ve done it doesn’t seem possible to have fitted so much into a short period of time.
Christmas was amazing. Both my daughters were here and I had the best Christmas ever, and that’s not an easy thing to do as they are always wonderful. It was great to have them around to get to know their new home from home, to help us settle in and just to relax and enjoy the lifestyle. We were even exceptionally lucky with the weather, it was warm enough to eat Christmas lunch outside!
Apart from having the family over we’ve been very busy getting settled in, dealing with french bureaucracy and discovering the area. There are definitely treats to see and do at every turn.
LIfe is certainly very different here and definitely different in a good way. Of course the compromises we’ve had to make is the distance from family. Technology helps and the very generous telephone we have that means calls are free, so there are no excuses for restricted contact. There will be challenges I know and days when the distance will seem longer than other days but we will find our way to keep the distance as short as possible.
One thing that we have had to ‘force’ ourselves to do is to join a local group to embed a social life for ourselves. This is not something I find terribly easy, more for the unnatural way of forging relationships than for any other reason. However it’s a necessity in the short term and we shall hopefully soon be attending quiz nights, improving our french and hopefully meeting like-minded people.
We have met lovely local people, from the kind central heating engineer, to the lovely old lady at the boulangerie. Everyone with just one exception has been helpful and patient with us. That one exception is my challenge, I am using all my years of experience at disarming unpleasant people and I’m determined that one day soon I’ll get a pleasant smile from her.