If you don’t follow my blog on frenchtruly.com first of all you should because there are lots of things that don’t come through youtube 😉 and second you might not know yet that I have moved back to France. That’s right, after spending 7 years in England and 7 years in the US, I am finally back in France.
In this video I want to share some concrete logistical aspects of moving to France and also I want to pick your brains, your curiosity, I want to get your help and your questions on a new French Truly TV series I’m planning: French countryside life style.
I say countryside because that’s where my heart took me. After years in London and Seattle, I felt an urgent need of peace, quiet, simplicity. And not anywhere in the French countryside. I decided to go back to Pélussin, the little village where I grew up before moving to Vienne in my teenage years.
You know it’s funny I made a video about Pélussin last year in June 2016! I had no idea I was going to go back! Life is full of surprises! Here’s some info about Pélussin.
There about 3000 people who live here. It’s located in the région called Auvergne Rhône Alpes, east and somewhat south of France. Inside the région there are several départements and this one is called la Loire and no it’s not where the castle are, it’s just that the river named Loire, which is the longest river in France, starts in the south of the département Loire where Pélussin is located and travels north west through France to throw itself as we say in French in the Atlantic ocean. Pélussin is also part of the parc régional du Pilat. Absolutely gorgeous quiet peaceful nature. It’s perfect. I will be organizing trips here.
I am already planning a set of interviews with interesting local people, businesses, organizations, the cooperative farmers market called La Ferme du Pilat, the café restaurant owner next to my place who I’m already friend with, artists from sculptors to stained glass, educational organizations on cinema or local wildlife, the baker who grows his own cereals, you name it! So if there are any questions you wish you could ask them please let me know! Anything you feel curious about, you’d love to know more about, just tell me here in the comments!
And I will also show you around Pélussin with my videos, the last 3 days I’ve lived here have just been way too windy for a pleasant sound! In the meantime I’m sharing with you some pictures I’ve taken. Again, any questions you may have, send them my way!
And now, my move back to France…
I just moved in my new place which may explain a potentially funny sound, and please forgive the scarce decoration, I don’t have everything yet and most of my art & decoration is still in Seattle.
Let’s just politely say moving back to France has been – difficult, from an administrative point of view. I’ve lived in 4 different countries so I thought I’m fine, plus I’m French, it shouldn’t be too complicated. It seems that I was wrong.
Then again it makes sense. Simply moving from one city to another is tricky and fills up your to do list. So of course moving from one country to another is going to be more complicated.
The hardest thing was opening a bank account. So if you’re planning to move to France make this your top priority, unlike me, mee how hard can it be? Very hard. For me, the fact that I had a company in the US… not good because they’re afraid of tax fraud. Plus a new law about tax fraud between France and the US just passed. Didn’t help. My dual citizenship, my American passport, didn’t help. It finally worked, but just like everything else around here, it takes tiiiiiiiime, patience, breath Virginie. I am not patient and I need to work! Of course one cannot do anything without a bank account. It must be top of your list.
My new emptyish place, I couldn’t have won this fight, yes everything kind of feels like a fight, I could not have won this fight without my mother’s signature even though I’m a 35 years old business owner! Why? Because of the documents they ask you. I don’t have any of them. I have never worked in France, I left right out of school, and I am not an employee since French Truly is my company, didn’t help either. Tax return any good? Non. It’s not in French.
I don’t have the internet yet (at the time I am editing this, I do have the internet woohoo!). It takes tiiiiime. It’s plugged in, lights are on, does it work now? Non, it takes tiiiiime.
What about my American licence? I went test driving some cars. Can I buy one? Non, it takes tiiiime. More than time, a lot of money. Because guess what? My American driver licence is worth nothing here. I’m exaggerating a little bit. I can drive someone else’s car for a little while but I cannot buy or lease a car without a French driver licence. Ok so I spend 12 hundred euros to learn how to drive! Wait, I know how to drive! Oh it doesn’t matter. You gotta do it all over again, which takes tiiiiiiiiime.
Oh France. How I love you. How gorgeous and charming and rich and full of culture and history and literature, how fascinating you are. But, man, do I miss american efficiency. Plug it in? It works. Spend a little money, you got it! Fill out a form, mail it, it’s done. I am American too!
Let’s finish on something wonderfully positive. On top of how delightful everyone truly is here and how ridiculously cheap life is compared to Seattle, something incredible happened to me yesterday, something I was not expecting. Now you have to remember that I grew up here and only moved to Vienne before I turned 13. So I go through my giant list of people to call electricity, water, etc. and garbage. In Seattle I would call the city of Seattle, in Pélussin I call the communauté de communes, the community of towns, Bonjour Madame je vous appelle pour organiser la collecte de mes poubelles. Oui bien sur pas de problem Madame quel est votre nom? What is your name? I give my name. Et votre prénom? And your first name? Virginie. Silence. Vous êtes allée à l’école primaire St Charles? Did you go to the primary school St Charles? Oui. You probably don’t remember me my name is Jacqueline Éparvier… Jacqueline??? We were great friends her parents were farmers and I remember her farm all the animals, the cheese, and in fact a week ago I showed my mother while we were driving the way to Jacqueline’s house! How cool is that? Last time I saw her I was 10 years old! And there was my other really good friend Amandine whose parents owned the boulangerie! the bakery. Oh the pains au chocolat coming right out of the oven! Well, I just found out my neighbor is her uncle. I’m quite happy with that.
In conclusion for today, I’d like to say it’s difficult but I’m pretty sure it’s going to be worth it on so many levels.