My husband shared an email that he sent to his bosses and I am sharing with you because it gives his view of our new life in France.
We moved into our new house on 11 September and it instantly felt like home. The children love their new bedrooms when they eventually decided which rooms they wanted! Both the boys opted for living under the eaves, one in each half of the house. Both have masses of space as these rooms run the full length of each half of the house. Our daughter opted for a double bedroom on the first floor as she is quite self-sufficient and doesn’t need space for gaming consoles and TVs etc.
The house is located about 5Km from the nearest town which has three bars (!) and a small supermarket (Casino) as well as the usual boulangerie which sells superb cakes and pastries as well as the usual baguettes and croissants. Our daily diet has changed drastically from ‘egg butties’ to pastries.
Life is much slower here, the French attitude is almost ‘yes, we’ll get around to it sometime’ but surprisingly things do get done.
My French is still pretty poor but I manage to communicate fairly well. It seems that if you try to speak French they will make the effort to try English.
What do we miss?
Fish & Chips – although we are fairly close to the coast where there are one or two decent Fish shops – obviously for the tourist market.
English beer – but I’m making great efforts to learn to like the French beer which is more like Lager. The bars are open from about 07.30 am but close much earlier in the evening – some by 8.00 pm
Traffic – With a population about the same as the UK but a land area of about six times that of UK people are spread out much more. Even the motorways seem quiet in comparison.
24 hour shopping and Sunday opening – most shops and supermarkets close early evening and Sunday opening is rare.
Prices – the cost of living is much lower here the only thing which seems more expensive is clothing.
Actually we don’t miss a lot !