Posted 20 hours ago

My Good Life in France: In Pursuit of the Rural Dream (The Good Life France)

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We realised pretty quickly that we were still townies at heart and we couldn’t eat our own animals so now we are overrun by birds! Janine has a very readable style and reading this felt as though I was catching up with a friend’s about what had been going on in their life. While getting to grips with the locals and la vie Française, and renovating her dilapidated new house, a building lacking the comforts of mains drainage, heating, or proper rooms. A land where people apparently say 'Oh là là' every five minutes and eat frogs’ legs at a drop of a hat (or beret). I look back with fondness at the many years spent living there, but a word of warning is not out of place.

This is an English woman’s memoir of how she moved to rural northern France - bottom line: moving to a new country ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. Located in the bustling heart of Saint-German-des-Prés, just behind Église de Saint-Germain-des-Prés and the famous cafes Les Deux Magots and le Bonaparte cafe, this tiny place is a photographer’s delight. If you’re here, you’re probably thinking about visiting this beautiful country, and we’re here to tell you that you’re in for a real treat! As I wind down from lunch with the family, and take a brief moment to relax and breathe before I start preparing the pastry for the Tarte Citron for our New Year’s Eve dinner party guests, I thought I’d pop in and wish you a very happy New Year! She gave up a sensible job in London, where she was born, to renovate a bargain basement barn and turn it into a home – an ongoing project.It gives a small insight into life in rural France - totally different to life in the towns and cities. Author Janine Marsh shares her charming journey to the good life dream--including the bon and not-so-bon things to consider! French people truly value their culture, heritage and history – and the French language is a big part of that.

It's not just the landmarks, like the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre museum, that make us fall in love with Paris. For me it was interesting to read how one of my favourite online magazines came to be The Good Life France, and I can imagine it will be an inspiration to those out there who want to do what Janine did, turn her back on a very successful career, only to develop another one in totally different surroundings, living the good life in France.

For the next few years, Marsh and her husband visited the house on weekends, beginning the monumental task of making it livable. That was tough, but being immersed like that made me absorb more because I had no choice but to speak French.

People see smoke coming out of her chimney, word spreads, and soon there is a traffic jam in the tiny downtown. Janine Marsh undertakes a gastronomic odyssey from the north to the south of France, following the route of the Vallée de la Gastronomie…. I’m always reading that French people can be aloof and standoffish but learning French has opened me up to a different understanding. I do find the people in those areas to be amazingly helpful and not the same hostile kind of whom others speak.

I had only told about 25 of my friends, and I asked them to follow me on Facebook as Mark said I could share my blog that way with them. In this episode we’re going to be uncovering Paris to explore some of the most amazing hidden gems, the secret places you might miss if you don’t know they are there. That’s what Janine Marsh (no relation) and her husband have achieved, and Janine’s account is a passionate and warming story of cold Christmas Day’s huddled around a log fire, of wheels within wheels, of making friends, and the warmth of recognition as someone who stayed and made a success of it. I want something light yet intelligent, not gooey but meaningful, and loaded with local-color, and this book had my interest with that.

My husband I lived in Brittany, but I’m now stuck with the job of closing down legal and financial ties there.Imagine sitting out on the field every day, come rain or shine, and just taking in this beauty, day-in and day-out. What advice might you offer to someone (or a couple) considering an expat move and career transition? It seems the post office was holding a package for us, the innkeeper was on lookout, and we had to wait until Monday when the post office was opened.

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