Print Posted By Lost in France on 20 Jan 2008 in Real France - Expat Interviews

Living in the Charente

Richard and his wife live in the Charente they had to spend two months in a gite with no kitchen before finally moving in to their new home in France.

Real FranceWhat made you move to France?
A stop-over at a refuelling staging post way back in the 60s, we wandered around the sun warm on my head, the sunflowers in full bloom, the ambience, tranquillity and I just thought to myself  "god I love it here" and that was it.

Which part of France do you live in?
We live in the Charente, in a small friendly commune, close enough to a small town with all the amenities so we don't feel isolated.

Open quote. Interviewee gives their moving to France tips My advice is don't get involved with the BRIT PACK. If you do everything will be in English and your will to learn will diminish very quickly. Close quote

Do you have children?
No children, they have grown and flown, but they love to come visiting.

What is your age?
I am 68 years young, my wife 62.

Where were you born?
England

What was the worst mistake you made when buying in France?
We had to wait two months before moving in and were staying in Gite with no cooking facilities, so we had to eat out all the time which all in all was very expensive.

Your best advice for people considering moving to France?
If you are nor sure where you want to live come over for a few visits, staying in different areas, come in the winter because if you like where are in the winter you'll love it in the summer.

Did you find it hard to integrate or adjust to your new life in France and do you have any tips to help others?
My advice is don't get involved with the BRIT PACK. If you do everything will be in English and your will to learn will diminish very quickly.  Never ask if the French speak English. Always say in French "I'm very sorry but my French is terrible, can you help me please" and normally the French will bend over backwards to assist you. Why ??? Because your LIVING in France and should out of respect at least try and converse with them in their own language.

What's the best thing about living in France?
The general attitude of the locals towards you,  the friendliness, seeing kingfishers on the river, woodpeckers in the garden.

And the worst?
Apart from my frustration at not being a fluent French speaker and my lack of ability to read and write there is no bad side - YET!!!!!
 

What do you think?

Join Our Newsletter - Today