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Sharing France with you

Every week you'll find new stories, local and national events, comments, recipes and advice on this page. Click on the Archive button to see previous posts full of interesting information and links.

La Tourtiere

Don Quay // Friday, 20 July 2018

The pretty 13th century town of Tournon d'Agenais in Lot-et-Garonne lays claim to the invention of a sweet pastry dish of apple and rum. Lots of rum and a little apple.

If you are tempted to practice your language skills discussing the contents, just be aware that ‘rhum’ is rum, whereas ‘rhume’ is a phlegmy cold....

For a list of properties for sale likely to be enhanced by an alcoholic tart for a neighbour, click here....

Where will you be watching from?

Katherine O`Neill // Thursday, 19 July 2018

Stage 15, a gruelling hilly affair of 181.5 KM, is taking place on Sunday the 22nd of July where riders will be finishing in the historic fortified city of Carcassonne.

After departing from Millau in the Aveyron, famous for its record-breaking cable stayed bridge, the riders will reach an elevation of 1,205m at the Pic de Nore, the summit of Montagne Noire that borders the Aude and Tarn departments.They can expect fabulous panoramic views over the Tarn and Aveyron countryside.

Sounds positively glorious, aside from the thigh-burning slog up hill.

Read more ...

Heads up!

Robert Parker // Tuesday, 17 July 2018

I challenge you to be unmoved by the sight of sunflowers - even on a cloudy day.
These beauties were snapped just outside the cute market town of Montaigu de Quercy in Tarn et Garonne , though it could have been in many other rural locations.

I suppose one might be allergic. Keep taking the tablets, I say!

For a list of properties for sale likely to be enhanced (or blighted if you must) by Helianthus as neighbours, click here

Allez les bleus!

marion // Monday, 16 July 2018

There were some thick heads this morning following the success of Les Bleus in the World Cup Final yesterday.
When the result was beyond doubt we took the dog up to the remparts of our local 13th century town for a quick trot.
The victory was greeted by roars from houses, tooting horns, and even a few minutes of church bells and it was a joy to stand there and share in the moment.

Our colleague up North also sent us this message "The pompiers were celebrating with the crowds by driving the fire engines up and down the streets tooting in Villebois!"

Success is great for atmosphere and well-being !


Photo: La dépêche du Midi


Love changed our plans

James // Thursday, 12 July 2018

Back in 2016 I took the decision to completely change my career path and my lifestyle and move to France. I was single, working freelance in a job I didn’t really enjoy and I had some money in my account from selling my flat. La belle vie called out to me and I answered. France meant a higher quality of life and a thorough shaking of the tree. I was going to go on an adventure.

My plan was simple: to find a property that was grand, that I could develop over time into an income-generating concern, and that had better weather than the sodden UK. After a long and exhaustive search I hit upon my current place: The Old Distillery in the Southern Charente.

Read more ...

Don't you just love Bergerac airport?

Robert Parker // Friday, 06 July 2018

My niece is flying into Bergerac to spend a few weeks in the business improving her French.

Being 16, obviously she has checked-in luggage.

And so she wanted to know about the arrivals hall and baggage retrieval.

Here it is. Both ‘belts’.

I love Bergerac airport.

10 things I wish I had known...

Julie Savill // Monday, 02 July 2018

Buying a house in France is the single best thing we have ever done and we’ve learned a few things on the way that are worth sharing.

We bought our house on little more than a whim. We had been mulling over the idea for a while, did all the right things such as subscribing to French Property News and going to The France Show in London to meet agents but it was still an idea, not a project.
We had a week’s holiday booked to come to the Dordogne in February (good time to view property; out of season, see it without the gloss of summer sun and leaves and get a feel for what stays open all year round. So we spoke to a few agents, asked if we could come and see their area and made a few appointments to just meet and chat and possibly see one or two properties.

And of course, we came across the perfect property in that week. A complete renovation that we could tinker with for several years before we retired. So having gone for a look, we came home with an accepted offer and 3 months later it was ours. 2 years later we loved being at the house so much that we sold up in the UK and moved here, lock, stock. And these are some of the things I have learnt since that first thrilling week when we found ‘the one’:

1 The French you learn at school and adult learning classes will take you just so far.

But I never learnt the word for chainsaw or the phrase for ‘someone’s donkey is in my garden’. Even if you don’t need these specific phrases you will need things of a similar nature. You will find yourself trying to discuss the local jam-making competition or how late the maize harvest is this year. ‘Un grand crème, s’il vous plait’ is a good start but the words you learn because you really need them will stick harder and quicker than anything you learn in a classroom.
And you’ll learn by your mistakes and make good friends into the bargain. A friend once asked if he could use someone’s lave vaisselle (dishwasher) rather than la WC (pronounced la vaysay - see what he did?). It was an unforgettable moment, but quite bonding when the mistake became clear.

2 There is life after cheddar

Read more ...

A gentle reminder!

Katherine O`Neill // Friday, 29 June 2018

Guilty of a lead foot behind the wheel?

You’ve got 2 more days to get trained up for the new speed limits in France!

From the 1st of July, some 400,000 km of roads will see the speed limit reduced from 90 km/h to 80 km/h. Word is the gendarmerie will out in force catching anyone slipping up - so beware and go steady out there!

More info on why this is happening, here and here.

Image source: Francesays.com

We love this renovation AND location!

Katherine O`Neill // Thursday, 28 June 2018

Often people moving to France find the perfect balance of privacy and life in a small town or village...you can hear the light buzz of the morning trip to the bakery and the locals catching up on the street. It's really quite lovely.

This house has an ideal sized private and enclosed garden that's perfect for soaking up the rays in peace, tending to your potager without interference, or keeping your dogs in! Not only that, it has had some great renovation work and we really feel the whole package must be seen to be truly appreciated.

Go on, take a chance. At just a smidgen over 100 K, what have you go to lose?

A typically rural scene

Robert Parker // Monday, 25 June 2018

Waiting for the dog to come in from his early morning ablutions, I snapped this typically rural scene; a tractor parked where it ran out of daylight at 11pm the previous evening. They work a long day, our neighbours. It was barely light again as I watched him remount his machine.

It could be almost anywhere in rural south-West France. In this case it is on the borders of the Dordogne and Charente outside the popular market town of Verteillac.

An hour to Bergerac airport, a bit more to Bordeaux, and within easy reach of the TGV and Paris (2hours!).

And so much more to keep one at home - including an inland beach!!

For a list of properties in, or near, Verteillac - click here

Your turn...

Let your inner author loose!  If you have an experience to share about moving to, living in or simply visiting France then we'd like to hear about it.  Write a maximum of 300 words, attach a photo and we'll publish the best here.

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