Print Posted By Lost in France on 19 Feb 2010 in Real France - Expat Interviews

Living in Seine et Marne

Originally from Ireland, Trina and her family moved to France three years ago and live in a small town in Seine et Marne situated in the Ile-de-France.

The moulin-de-belle-assise in Seine et MarneWhat made you move to France and how long have you lived here?
We moved over for my partners job nearly three years ago now.

Which part of France do you live in, and what's it like to live there?
Seine et Marne.
I love it here, small town just right when we used to live out in the countryside before now not too busy but not too quite either. People have been very nice here too ...having three kids at school is a great help as it means you have to get out there and mix.

It is a pleasant shady village in a narrow valley, with Hot Springs (dating back to a time before the Romans) and a short but vibrant 'Tourist Season'. the rest of the year the village gets back to the usual rural French life of eating drinking and arguing amongst themselves!

Do you have children, if so how easy was it for them to adjust to a French school?
Three kids the youngest of which just started maternelle in September ...but having been here since the age of one has had no problem.

The older two were aged 6 and 5 when we moved over and it was a big change for them...going from a small school in Ireland where there were only 30 kids in total to classes of thirty was a huge change for them ...they didn't have a word of French so the first maybe three/four months were very hard.

Thankfully I never had a morning with them refusing to go to school but it was very hard on them. crying a lot ...even mammy!

Now three years on it is me who asks the kids for translations!!!

Open quote. Interviewee gives their moving to France tips Everything seems to need about a trillion signatures and practically a pint of blood to go along with it! Close quote

What is your age?

Where were you born?

Do you work, if so what do you do and how difficult was it to find work or start a business in France?
I am at home with the kids.

What was the worst mistake you made when buying in France?
Not really a huge mistake but the credit crisis has hit us we are now trying to sell the house ...and it is worth less.

Your best tip or advice to other people considering moving to France?
Expect paperwork!!! I have never known a country like it for paperwork!!! Everything seems to need about a trillion signatures and practically a pint of blood to go along with it!!!!

Did you find it hard to integrate or adjust to your new life in France and do you have any tips to help others?
The only thing I would say is from day one do not treat it like a holiday!!! France is like any other place you choose to live, bills still need to be paid, kids still need to go to school, you still need doctors, dentists and the like. Do not rest on your laurels getting yourself organised over here, or you won't see the first year flying by!

What's the best thing about living in France?
Undoubtedly the weather!!! ok! we have had a lot of snow and cold recently but in France you get to see all types of weather in one years which I love!

Also the opportunity to learn a new language and make new friends, my kids hopefully will grow up, perhaps without much of a sense of nationality but learning that no matter where you live we are all the same.

And the worst?
For me personally it has been that unfortunately my husband lost his job here and what with the recession he had to move to work...which means that for the last year and a half I am here with the kids alone and he commutes :(

On a smaller level....the language still is a huge challenge but... we knew that before we moved!!

What do you think?

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