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Lehaut last won the day on July 30

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  1. We have navigated from the Artic circle to Croatia on HERE maps downloaded onto an Android phone. The biggest advantage for us, apart from no data share, adverts, cost etc is the ability to download maps onto your phone. This is a big plus if you have only a limited data plan or you are traveling in a country that your data plan does not work in. Its owned by Nokia amongst others.
  2. Both our sons were/are being fully educated under the French education scheme. Both are currently PhD students. As they started at ages 2 1/2 and 3 they are both bi-lingual. Hopefully your daughter has enough French to get into Uni/Prepa here. That said, our eldest had a Columbian girl join the first year of his Masters degree, she spoke very little French but in short order got up to speed and passed her Masters (equivalent) with him. You mention a "fund". Neither of our boys have had to pay for their education here in France. We did have to pay out over €20,000 for one year at Imperial College London for our eldest's double degree. For their PhDs, they are fully funded and get paid a salary. That said, they are both STEM students. I understand that some other areas you have to fund your own PhD. You will get various input as to the quality of the French education system. From our point of view, village school up to Uni, we are/have been very pleased with it.
  3. In our last village, you could leave parcels in the post box, after notifying the post on line. The postie would then pick it up on his way past. He also carried stamps with him for us to buy. Our last lady her in Nantes (she retired last year) knew us by name and sight and would stop to deliver us our mail if she saw us out walking. Many of them here run on electric bikes and tri-cycles. We were treated to the comic and somewhat dangerous sight of two of them haring round a corner in front of us, obviously racing back to the depot. The main post office in St Seb does have the odd "fermeture exceptionelle", normally when you go by foot with a parcel. The staff there have a keen sense of humour. One of them complemented my wife what beautiful hand writing she had. She herself, she told us wrote like a pig!
  4. Ours sees us in short order, flavoured mouthwash is offered and used. He loves the Beatles too.
  5. "Perhaps it's time I looked again at the 2 banks you have mentioned. Do you use those for the impôts people? Would they put money they owe you into the accounts? Also CPAM? Thanks in advance, Lehaut. I do not have a smart phone so I guess that would restrict my use considerably?" For the first part, Boursorama acts just like a normal bank, we do standing orders etc, so yes to the CPAM and Impôts. We have standing orders paid into Revolut, but none going out. In principle it acts just like a normal bank, so everything should be possible. You can use it on line without a phone, but the extra security in alerts and authorisations might be difficult for both systems.
  6. Had several texts of condolence from French people we know last night, many are deeply saddened by her passing, as we are too. We will never see the like again.
  7. I have little faith in the stats regularly banded about on French TV and in the papers. One that springs to mind is on the lines of a dripping tap uses 60 cu meters of water a year. Another article about a chap who uses the recuperated 70,000 litres of water his family consumes in baths and showers to flush his toilets. This one, in my mind, takes the biscuit. It concerns a new unit of the CRS based in Nantes, some 200 police who, according to this article: "à Nantes, une nouvelle unité de 200 policiers, sur le modèle de la CRS 8, cette unité spéciale mobilisable 24 heures sur 24 et 7 jours sur 7, capable d’intervenir en 15 minutes dans un rayon de 300 km en cas de violences urbaines." By my calculations they have access to a craft of some sort that will allow them to travel at least 1200kmph to do 300kms in 15 mins.
  8. With both the Revolut and Boursorama cards they work closely in conjunction with the relevant app on your phone. Within seconds of using either card, I get an alert on my phone to tell me a transaction has taken place. For larger transaction on the net, I often have to authorise the transaction on my phone before it takes place, in real time. Neither alert option is available with a cheque book. Most associations etc have a bank account, it does not take long to set up a virement on your phone to send them the money. In recent months, this also as been virtually instantaneous. From our RBS account in Scotland to Revolut takes seconds, Revolut to Boursoroma the same. When I set up a new virement, I always start with a 10€ transaction to make sure I have put in the right numbers. Even buying stuff of Leboncoin you can do an on the spot payment. Gone are they days of "bank account reconciliation" for outstanding cheques! I have had payments made on my Amazon account using a debit card in the USA. A couple of hundred were taken, several thousand more were in the basket. I contacted the card issuer (ING) and got the transactions stopped and the money returned. Most apps have a "stop" action to freeze your card. Revolut has "virtual" card which we use for on line purchases. It can be used only once, so no chance of it being cloned. The bottom line is to use what you are comfortable with. I just love the tech behind the cards, the ease of operation, almost free sterling/euro exchanges etc. I have nothing to do with either company.
  9. Yes, the article claimed it was not a "balle perdue" but a sick, deliberate act. It went on to say that it missed any major blood vessels, so the prognosis was good.
  10. We have Revolut and Boursarama as our main French bank accounts. We have a cheque book for neither bank. Not had any problems in spending large amounts of money on the cards in a given period of time. Have not needed to use a cheque in a retail environment for years. Cash is the same, we use the card for a baguette upwards. Lowest amount was 64 cents for a motorway charge.
  11. Not just hunters, someone shot this horse up the road from us yesterday.
  12. "But also if one of the kids needs a fully functioning house for free, they have one." Thanks for the reply, as good a reason as any, hopefully you have enough free houses to go round for the other kids 😉
  13. Just curious; I am renovating my OH's family rural house that she inherited. It is in a very good area. 20 Mins from Macon and 50 mins from Lyon. So the house is free. Apart from some Notaire fees. 6 K ish lets say. It is going to cost about...150 k to renovate .....to make it a house worth living in. So this is free (no buying costs) and it going cost 150 k to renovate it. Will it be worth 150 k in rural desert medical France ? No. And to be fair it is in very good condition. So yeah, I would not buy any of those dumps shown in that article. You are renovating the house at a cost of 150K, knowing it will not be worth that when/if you are finished, why are you doing it? Do you intend to live in this medical desert?
  14. We had drinks with our neighbour last night which included her daughter and family. She is pharmacist just outside Nantes, currently practising. I asked her about DNR in France. To her knowledge, it is not something that is current. The medical staff are bound to do everything possible to sustain life, an individuals choice not to allow resuscitation is not something she is aware of. There are other medical situations that illustrate the cultural differences between countries. A few years ago I asked our French doctor about a vasectomy. Things have changed, but he told me that, unless there were over riding medical reasons, it would not be done. Until 1999 it was illegal! Vasectomy is considered to be an illicit procedure in France under the 19th century “Napoleon code” which proscribes acts of so called “self mutilation.” Doctors who perform vasectomies in France risk criminal charges although there have been no prosecutions on the issue for more than 40 years. I think it is possible now, after a 4 month cooling off period after the initial request.
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