Nearly 30 years ago, a political candidate who later became president of the United States, included in a campaign speech his desire for a “kinder, and gentler nation”. He was referring, in part, in his own words “to protect our environment, to safeguard our national heritage for future generations”. When I first heard that phrase I thought he was referring to cultivating a sense of civility that had existed when I was growing up but seemed to have disappeared. In moving to France we appear to have rediscovered both his vision and mine. Read the rest of this entry
We’re back for round two. If you are a US citizen living in France, you must first obtain a visa that you then convert to a one-year residency card upon arrival in your new home country. For each of those next several years that you live here, you have to apply for an annual renewal of the card. After five continuous years here you can request a 10-year card or citizenship, neither of which requires you to give up American citizenship, for which, by the way, Uncle Sam would want to collect 2,350 dollars. But that’s years down the road. Today’s news is that this week we picked up our renewed carte de séjour (residence permit) valid for the next 12 months. Read the rest of this entry
By now you have read In residence and got the cold hard facts of the visit to the OFII immigration office. There was a lot of fun going on during this visit that made the time fly by.
Each and every person that we encountered was doing their very best to make each person feel at ease with the process. Casual banter about where you were from and how they had been there, too. “Good to see you back again” to someone who must have had a problem with the first visit. This is not your typical government operation of any government that I’m familiar with. Read the rest of this entry
It’s official, we’re legal residents of France for a year, at least, as of yesterday afternoon! The process all began back in January of this year when we went to the French consulate in Miami to request a visa. Americans can stay here for up to 90 days in any 6-month period with only a passport but for any longer than that you need a visa that’s valid for a year. But wait, even with that document issued in the US you still have to request a titre de sejour (residence permit) once you arrive.Then the wait begins. Read the rest of this entry
Coming up with the name for today’s post was rather fun for a couple of reasons. The first was the choice of titles since it has to do with getting a visa. Since the French consulate in Miami accepts credit cards to pay the 99 euro fee, it could have been “Visa for Visa”. A takeoff on the expression “easy-peasy” since this whole process went very smoothly once we got to the consulate brought to mind “Visa(y)-peasy”. And of course the original French vis-à-vis that we’ve adopted into English meaning, among many things, “face to face”, would have certainly worked since we had to apply in person at their office that looks out onto Biscayne Bay. Instead I chose this one word that at first glance might not seem to have anything to do with today’s topic, but that’s the other reason why naming it was fun. Read the rest of this entry
It’s taken us a while to assemble all of the documents that the French consulate requires to apply for a long stay visitor’s visa and I think we’re now ready. There are 10 offices in the US and while each follows a similar list of requirements (passport, application, fee, etc.) some tell you specifically what must be included on each document and some want more information than others. The Miami consulate website shows a pretty general list without many details. Here’s what they have requested and how we have complied: Read the rest of this entry
We’re back! Nine months ago we were here in northern Florida, looking out at this view you see above when we decided it was time to move. You can read about that decision on our first-ever post that kicked off this blog by reading our blog post This is where it all started.
So, what’s changed? Not very much with this view except now the marsh is light green since it’s currently summer instead of light brown as winter approached last Thanksgiving. For us, the changes revolve around narrowing down our options which were wide open when we first began the blog. For example, we now know that we’re moving to Carcassonne, we’ll be taking a flight with the dog rather than the Queen Mary II, and we’ll be living in a small house rather than an apartment starting in the spring of 2016. If you’ve had the chance to read our earlier posts you’ll know all of the details that got us to this point.
One thing that has changed, however, is the creation of this blog. The initial inspiration came from our friends Tracy & Alan who have their blog about moving from the US to France and the motivation to help others in a similar situation propels us to write. Now we always have the camera with us searching for an interesting photo to include and we talk constantly about what topics might be useful to post. It’s great having a new hobby that doesn’t cost much or take up any room but provides hours of entertainment.