A version of this story was first published in The Big Issue in May 2017.
I am standing in a field in Normandy trying to attract the attention of a donkey called Dara.
Truth be told it’s a bit like that in my French hideaway today. I had plans of dusting off the bike and riding into Chinon for the English conversation and afternoon tea but it’s not looking likely at the moment. Maybe I’ll just stay inside and eat. I’m waiting for our bakery van to pull in so I can buy a baguette and a croissant – a very rare treat but it will taste delicious with my HOME MADE apricot jam. No your eyes do not deceive you – my cooking mojo has returned. It went walkabout after 25 years of doing it for a living. Now I can cook for the sheer joy of it – another reason to love my new French home.
Dear Mum and Dad,
It’s 10.30am Wednesday morning and the sun is shining, the birds are singing (even a cuckoo I’m pretty sure) and all’s right with the world.
With a little (a very little help) from Orange France, a wi-fi extender (not at all like seafood extender) and the National Australia Bank, your intrepid correspondent has prevailed over the technology that’s been out to get her from Day One. Not that she’s paranoid: she’s just very, very tired. Continue reading
Here are 10 things she’s learned about French culture so far:
In rural France you can buy local wine at the hardware place which is a marriage made in heaven for your average DIY Woman.
It happened just this afternoon in Seuilly. Yes that’s Seuilly. France. Two days ago I moved from one slice of French paradise to another just five minutes down the road. My current abode is a light-filled self-contained apartment off the beaten track with a view to die for and a cute little bakery van that drops in twice a week with a fresh baguette.It is the perfect setting for a runaway writer except for just one thing: no wifi…
2. A loud and lairy luggage belt can be seen from 50 paces, as can a burnt orange suitcase – the choice is yours. Continue reading