At the beginning of this year (OK, just 2 days ago) we added a new section to the blog called “Budget”. Since that is such an important consideration when making any move, it made sense to highlight what it costs to live overseas. On that page, which you access on the menu bar above, you’ll be able to see what others around France spend on a monthly basis. Just as including New York City or San Francisco in a budget discussion about life in the USA would scare anyone, we’ve not listed what someone in Paris might spend. Let’s just say that what we’re allowing for all costs in Carcassonne (rent, food, insurance, taxes, etc.) would barely cover renting a studio apartment in the City of Light. Eventually we’ll be able to show the exact amount that we spend on a monthly basis in the southwest of France.
One of the blogs we follow, Oui in France, last month published a post concerning myths about Americans living in France. The author writes that she frequently hears “Wow, you must be well-off” since you were able to move to France. We too thought that until we saw an online article about how a couple could live modestly in Carcassonne on one US Social Security check. We’ve since learned that although that is achievable, it really takes a bit more but if both of you are receiving a retirement pension then “living the dream” becomes oh so real. Shopping for fresh fruits and vegetables at the market 3 days a week, walking along the canal and river for miles every day, climbing up to the castle and strolling its mile-long perimeter, enjoying fresh-baked baguettes from the bakery daily, and savoring an espresso at a sidewalk café, all within walking distance of home, are your reality.