In French when you talk about a two-week period you will most commonly hear “15 days” because they include the day you are currently in. Since we’ve now been in the house for quinze jours I thought I’d update a few of those early day posts. Let’s start with the one that’s generated the most interest and concern: Stone cold.
Those first 24 hours here in the house really were chilly. We have perfectly good heaters both downstairs and up but they had apparently not been on in some time so those stones were definitely holding on to the cold. We are now quite comfortable and upstairs only turn on the heat for a bit when we first get up just to warm up the bathroom.
There are multiple settings on the washing machine and the first one we chose did indeed take 2 and a half hours to complete. We have since experimented with many of the other options and now finish the laundry in half the time. Drying time has decreased as well since we’ve found the fan controls on the room heater to circulate the air around the clothes. The cloudy, rainy weather that we had upon arrival has moved on so we can now place the drying rack outdoors in the courtyard. Doing a load of laundry every couple of days has simply become part of our routine. It’s not as if we’re really in any hurry.
We think that we’ve cracked the code for shopping at the market. Saturday is considerably busier than either Tuesday or Thursday so more bargains seem to be available on those non-weekend days. Fewer vendors but much smaller crowds making it easier to navigate and possibly better prices. It also seems that the further you get away from what we consider to be the main entrance to the square, the better the prices become. We find it quite entertaining to seek out the best bargains since whatever we find becomes dinner for the next two nights and then we go back to see what else has arrived.
The landlord came by on Thursday to collect the security deposit. The agreement was that we would pay 2 month’s rent in advance and the deposit upon arrival. Rental contracts here generally run for 3 years but because this place is fully furnished it can be limited to one year. Although we’ve known that from the beginning I guess it didn’t hit me until she said something about our having a year to find a new place to live. Darn, we’re just getting settled in and loving it and now the search has to begin all over again. First we’ll need to decide if we want another furnished place for a year, an unfurnished house or apartment for three years, or to buy a house. In the past two weeks my toughest choices have been which pastry I wanted from the bakery.
Walking along the river with Heather in the afternoon has become a welcome routine. In Atlanta I used to spend an hour on the treadmill every day beginning at 3 PM basically because if I didn’t do that I’d fall asleep. Now we’ve replaced that with a beautiful stroll and when we return it’s time for fresh bread baked that morning, cheese, and wine. I think that we’re adapting well to life in France.