The Good Life France

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My French Life: A day in the life of …

I was talking to a friend the other day – someone I used to work with in London before I came to France and he said “what do you do all day, you must be bored out of your brains living out there in the middle of bloody nowhere doing nothing”…

It made me realise that probably most people who don’t read my blog but who knew me before I was Frenchified think that I am retired and sitting here all day doing bugger all. I started thinking about this further and came up with a list of things that they probably think constitutes my days in France:

Wake up when I feel like it, no alarm clock, nothing urgent to do…

Get up to a breakfast of croissants, pain au chocolat and freshly brewed coffee…

Wander about my French village saying bonjour to tout le monde and passing the time of day in a relaxed manner possibly…

Lying on a sandy beach, reading, eating wonderful French chocolat before

Going to the shops to stock up on baguettes, foie gras, perfume, chic shoes and little black dresses and bottles of fine French wine and then stopping on the way to…

Eat out at an haut cuisine restaurant where a maître d’ will offer me a fine aperitif and afterwards I will…

Go home to my gorgeous chateau, recline on a chaise longue listening to Edith Piaf and other French music (on radio Paris Chanson!) and…

Quaff champagne and Chablis before staggering up to bed.

If only…

The reality is somewhat different and I hate to shatter any illusions that people might have but this is what really happens on a typical day…

Get up when the alarm wakes me (6.00 am) or when Monsieur J’s cockerel which sleeps in a tree opposite my bedroom window drives me so mad I can’t stand it…

Let the cats out; feed the chickens, ducks and geese; walk the dogs; start writing in peace before the OH gets up at 8.30…

Make breakfast – porridge and tea…

Transform into Lady Gofer (go fer this and go fer that) – fetching and carrying for OH as he is the senior renovation technician (we found we had to agree who was boss to avoid arguments) though I do all the painting and much of the fiddly work as he doesn’t enjoy it (nor do I now that we are on our 14th room renovation)…

In between cleaning buckets, painting, getting tools from workshop, making tea, holding bits of wood up, fetching bricks, repointing walls, tiling, I…

Do housework – which with three dogs, three cats and living on what is essentially a building site is sometimes a challenge and getting out the…

Garden has become a bit of a luxury even though I am trying to be self-sufficient in vegetables and fruit on my one acre of land and that requires a fair bit of effort…

I also do most of the cooking which I have had to learn from scratch having never bothered before…

And I work on The Good Life France – THE best web magazine about France (!) and contribute to various other sites, newspapers and…

Eventually I have to stop and have a glass of wine (red) and watch an hour of TV (I find House, Boston Legal and The Mentalist very relaxing!) and then

Fall asleep exhausted…

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