Monthly Archives: July 2016

En-tiley ours

Blue and white tiles in the kitchen

Blue and white tiles in the kitchen

It may have taken three months, that felt like a year, but we have signed the final sales contract on a house in France. The first time I mentioned anything about house buying on the blog was in a post from May when we had been taking some pictures of courtyards. We both crave light, finding dismal days depressing, so a house built around an outdoor courtyard, with glass doors and windows opening each room to the sun was ideal. There are websites (listed at the end) that give complete details about the entire house buying process here, but the highlights of what we went through are below. Read the rest of this entry

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Integration

Rooftops of Carcassonne looking towards the castle

Rooftops of Carcassonne looking towards the castle

If you lived in the USA, especially the south, during the 1950’s and 60’s, just the mention of this blog post’s title word might have made your blood run hot or cold depending upon your upbringing, experiences, and/or outlook on life. To live successfully in another country, or perhaps even in your own, we find integration a very important word. In fact, for us in France intégration is a requirement. Read the rest of this entry

Trip to Trèbes

Trebes from the Canal-du-Midi

Trèbes viewed from the Canal-du-Midi

As the crow flies, it’s only about 7 kilometers (4.4 miles) to Trèbes which is the next town east of Carcassonne along the Canal-du-Midi. The driving distance is 10 kilometers that you can cover in around 13 minutes. According to our local tourist authority’s booklet Walks: Nature and Heritage if you follow the towpath along the canal you can get there in 2 and ½ hours on foot. Since we have chosen to live without a car and our avid-hiking friends, Gaynor and Pete were with us, you can guess how we got there. Read the rest of this entry

The language of dance

Dancing in Carcassonne

Dancing in Carcassonne

Several times you’ve probably read here about our English friends Gaynor and Pete whom we met by chance (I call that “meeting by Bill”—the man who knows no strangers) when we still lived in Atlanta. They are quite an active couple both outdoors whether cycling, kayaking,or hiking and even indoors with the foxtrot, cha cha, and tango for example, or a helium balloon. Read the rest of this entry

Flower power

Flower contest poster from the city's website

Flower contest poster from the city’s website

If you asked Bill and me to come up with a nickname for our new hometown, we’d probably say Festival City since it seems there’s always some kind of celebration going on all year long. The 6-week-long summer music festival attracts worldwide attention while a food or wine exhibition might only be covered in the local press…and on this blog since we never miss one of those! Last month Carcassonne sponsored a flower contest to encourage residents to decorate their balconies, terraces, and yards for all to see. They neglected to mention that the city itself was going to give all of the contestants a run for their money with floral displays at lots of gardens and monuments. Read the rest of this entry

Truth or marketing?

Wine fountains

Wine fountains

If I say “boxed wine” to you, what comes to mind? Depending on your own experience it might be a bad memory (or no memory, if a bit of overindulgence were involved) or you might have lucked out and found something you like. Now, what if I say “wine fountain”? Ah, visions of wedding receptions and stacks of champagne glasses with bubbly flowing over the sides to fill the glasses below. Guess what our supermarket calls their display of wine in plastic and cardboard? Read the rest of this entry

What’s all that noise ? (part 2)

Fireworks over the castle

Fireworks over the castle

It’s hard to compete with the sight and sound of a 30-minute non-stop fireworks show that never stops to take a breathe or to let you do so either. Imagine sitting at the base of the castle above which all of these explosions are going on every few seconds and you’ll know what we did last night to celebrate the July 14 Fête Nationale or what we know as Bastille Day. Read the rest of this entry

Renestance

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A new life in Lille

Tales of a Brit who moved to Hauts-de-France

Southern Fried French

Two American Guys & Their Dog Move to France

wcs

Two American Guys & Their Dog Move to France

Chez Loulou

Two American Guys & Their Dog Move to France

The Vicious Cycle

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Post-Industrial Eating

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