Sunday, March 29, 2009

What a Week that Was!

I have just finished my (at least) once daily phone call from eldest son and his girlfriend in deepest France. God alone knows what my phone bill will be like while they are there!  Anyway, they have been very busy and seem to be really enjoying the challenge.  My son seems to be managing the French language very well, even though it has been many years since he was in the Immersion Program when we moved to Montreal back in 1990. At that time he and my daughter spent an intensive three to four months in this program learning the language before they entered the French school system and it is certainly paying off now.  He didn't actually stay in the program while daughter did, but it is all coming to the surface now.

In this last week he has been in contact with French electricians, EDF; the electricity company, France Telecom, La Poste and is getting all the systems working in his/our favour.  I am very impressed.  He has set up a bank account and got money out of it!  

However, as far as the amenities are concerned, it is a case of three steps forward, one back!  They do now have a small hot plate/toaster oven and fridge, duvet and pillows, plates etc. but son decided he could manage to fix the toilet so now they have to use the public one in the village!  I suggested going to the local sports centre to swim so they could have a nice hot shower afterwards so I think that is on the horizon pretty soon as they say the sponge baths in the freezing cold bathroom are not much fun. 

Apparently they should have telephone/internet service within 15 days, does that sound too good to be true!  It would certainly help the phone bill.  EDF are supposed to be calling on Tuesday to make an appointment to come and move the fuse box, but they have been chatting to the neighbours and one has been waiting since January for this to happen so......

They are still looking for a van to purchase, missed out on one by an hour, which was very galling especially as they had been ready to view immediately and were put off for a couple of days.  But have seen another couple of promising ones which they are going back to see tomorrow.

They spent the morning with another neighbour of ours helping set up a chicken run in a nearby field and got 6 fresh eggs for their labours.  Son's girlfriend wants to get chickens and plant herbs etc. so they are obviously thinking long term.  When she mentioned the chickens son did respond by saying they would be leaving at some point and then what would happen to the chickens to which all the locals just said "well then you eat chicken for the last week!".  This son was a vegetarian not too long ago!  

I am so glad they are enjoying it, although the quiet life might be a bit too much for them after a little while.  Son did say we might have to fight them for the house in the future.   I need to get there ASAP.  I did point out that the ruin on the end is vacant!!


Maggie May said...

I see you have *lost* the house then! Glad son & girl friend have got things moving and like the place so much.
The phone calls..... well, I suppose it is worth it for peace of mind!

The Finely Tuned Woman said...

What fun this is turning out to be for them. You may have to fight them to get the house back. At least they are getting some much needed things done, that's a positive. I bet you can't wait to go there yourself. It's going to be lovely.

Elizabethd said...

This brings back memories of our first few months in Brittany, renovating a the school holidays when I could escape from teaching. Hope it all goes well.

dND said...

So glad they are enjoying it.

On the Internet front... It's pot luck I think, I know of people who've been up and running within a day of the 'appointed day' and others that have taken 3 months to finally get a connection - and you pay to go through the help/fault lines too!

I bet you can't wait to get back here and see the changes.

Deborah x

aims said...

This adventure truly is a journey of a thousand steps isn't it?

How lucky you are that your son is there.

I have thought of what you are doing and going through quite a bit. After seeing what Deborah goes through all the time I have wondered about life in France. It almost seems - backward? But perhaps that is what is so enticing about it. Sigh.

Looking forward to what is next!

Shana said...

What an adventure!!