Just a normal week

28 August 2011

I just spoke to my mother and sisters in Cape Town… while Mandi and Danie watch a whole Jack Sparrow movie. No, it did not cost me a cent. Maybe I should not tell everyone… : )
Our internet, cable TV and telephone comes in one ‘package’. For 45 euros a month we have uncapped internet (…and fast as Pieter tells me), 150 or something TV channels, unlimited calls to landlines and cellphones in France and unlimited calls to almost every country including SA. That is the best thing we could ask for.
Apart from this ‘luxury’ this week was pretty normal…
I buy baquettes fresh from the boulanger every day for lunch. That part is really true: French people walk with baquettes under the arm and break off a piece to eat as they leave the shop.

…trois baguettes s’il vous plaît…

Sunday evening we had boerewors rolls…
 

…and our golfball basket is almost full…

The players don’t come to look for their balls. I think they are too embarrassed. You see you have to hit really, really skew to let the ball end up in our garden. Probably 45° out… but still we get about 1 every second day. : )

…and yesterday I tried the Mrs. Balls recipe from their site. Its not too bad, almost the real thing, I must say. Maybe a bit less chillies next time…

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Collonges-la-Rouge

19 August 2011

On our way back on Monday we stopped at this little village. Collonges-la-Rouge is on the list of ‘most beautiful villages in France’. To be on the list it has to meet certain criteria of which one is that the population must not exceed 2000 inhabitants. Collonges-la-Rouge is entirely built with red sandstone. The entire village is classified as a historical monument.

…picturesque, pretty…

and then the nutella crêpes…

and all the shops sell foie gras…

A weekend in Corrèze

15 August 2011

This weekend was a long weekend in France, and we were privileged to spend it with our friends Ronelle and Hartman on their french farm ‘Coin Perdu’ in Corrèze. Their closest town is Beaulieu-sur-Dordogne and this is about 500km south of Paris. South means better weather, so we had some summer days to sit in the sun and the kids could even enjoy a swim. We left Friday morning at 10…

…a first stop for ‘pain au chocolat’ and coffee…

…and a second cooldrink break…

…Coin Perdu…

…and our tents under the apple tree…
 

They are busy restoring the old stone buildings. Almost done with the house and in the meantime they are staying in the barn, which is well equipped and beautiful with the old wooden floor and stone walls.

…a braai every evening, played Pétanque

en daar is tot kleilat gegooi…

…the end of our first roadtrip in France…


Un abri de jardin

7 August 2011

That is french for a garden shed. Ok, I only made the title french to make you read on… now it sounds like some french adventure. As this is my diary I had to add the garden shed, because this whole weekend was taken up by this abri de jardin!
Our house is a bit smaller than what we had in Cape Town. At the moment there are a few things packed in the garage, with everything that belongs in a garage. Our plan was to get a garden shed and pack the garage things there and then we can use the garage as an extra room or at least a neat storage room.
Thursday evening we bought the shed at Leroy Merlin. Many shops here also rent out vans or trucks for you to do your own delivery. You rent it for an hour, pay about 10€ and take your things home that can’t fit in your car. So, we also booked one of their small trucks for Friday afternoon as we thought this was something that you need more time for and more space…
Friday afternoon, off we went to Leroy Merlin. We signed all the forms for the truck, after it was checked and explained to us how it all works. Got the keys and drove in to the ‘yard’ to pick up our shed. The young guy who helped us came with a forklift and parked next to us. We looked on the huge shelves but couldn’t see where he was going to find the shed. Then we saw it was already on the forklift… a box of 1,8m by 1m and about 15 cm thick! We were convinced that it couldn’t be! A whole garden shed in that box. The end of the story… we gave the truck back and ‘easily’ fit the box in the back of our Opel Zafira. The young guy said that he told Danie the previous evening that he didn’t need a truck… but that was probably misunderstood with the mix of bits of english and bits of french!

the box…

and here we go…

a short break…

and the rest…

two days, six people, lots of parts from a small box and many screws to make one garden shed.

Courdimanche

5 August 2011

If someone in France would ask me where we live, I would say Cergy. If someone in Cergy would ask me where we live, I would say Courdimanche. Cergy is the bigger town, with surrounding smaller villages, like Courdimanche and Vaureal, Jouy le Moutier, Pontoise and more.
Each one of the villages still have their older centre ville. I would think that is where the village started and then they built around it and now it forms one big town.
Courdimanche is a small village, but it has a big golf course. All around the golf course are housing complexes and we stay in one of them. My first thought was that I didn’t want to stay in a ‘complex’, but soon realised the blessing of it.
We are in a cul de sac and surrounded by the friendliest neighbours.They all came to meet us and Cynthia took me around to show me the best boulanger, best boucher, where not to buy meat and everything I need to know. The children all play in our street and the girls have already made friends.

the view on the golf course from our small bedroom balcony…

our street… and tennis court to the left…

the old village of Courdimanche…