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Everything posted by Deimos

  1. Deimos

    Blue Eggs

    Walking in the fields the other day I found a blue egg shell on the path under a tree. No chickens within a Km or so. Egg must have been quite small (little over 1 inch max length). I believe it had hatched but could see no nest in the tree above (and no mess on the ground around the egg). And ideas ?
  2. Mine (with Wanadoo) regularly disconnects (at least a couple of times per day). I have it set to automatically re-connect (re-dial) so often I don't notice. today it went once and I had to switch of the ADSL modem and switch it back on again to get re-connected (actually this happened a few times this afternoon). It is not good but I've spent so long on the phone to FT and had engineers out and nobody can fix it so I just have to accept it as "life".
  3. I would check on http://www.degrouptest.com/ (sorry, you’ll have to cut and paste the link) to see who can actually provide you what speeds. Depending on where you live, not all ISP can provide a service (or all speeds) and the costs can vary. With regard to phone line activation, mine was very quick (a day or so), but that is only my personal experience and I’m sure times vary. I went with Wanadoo (the only ISP who could provide a service to my rural location when ADSL arrived). I got an Ethernet ADSL modem from them for €10 and paid no connection fee, though I did need to commit to a min 1year contract.
  4. Certainly not complaining. We live in the real world and Archant have to make a living. Truth is they do not publish their magazine and maintain this forum out of the goodness of their hearts but to help their company commercially. This forum probably follows similar guidelines to the magazine itself. Income from major (and ongoing) advertisers is important to the magazine’s profitability. One would not expect to see articles critical of aspects of major advertisers practices published. Just common sense. I use my case only as an example. I cannot justifiable consider I’ve been “taken advantage of” (as immediately prior to starting legal action they provided me with a significant refund). I think people just need to be aware of the limitations of information published on the forum (in all respects – not just in my example).
  5. I was not complaining about it, just stating it. The company I refer to with my experience (and quite a few others I know of and many more through an ex-employee) effectively protects its reputation by extensive advertising and the fact that most people use such agencies only for their 1st purchase abroad. They are thus not dependant on repeat business. Long time ago there were quite a few posts removed about the company. I didn’t see them, just the comments about them being removed. Maybe, had the posts remained it might have saved me quite a lot of money and problems (who can say as they have gone). I’m not complaining nor trying to kindle any “censorship” type of argument, just that as with all things in life, people need to be aware of what can and cannot be said and thus that there may be the risk of unbalanced opinion being expressed.
  6. [quote]The sig issue has been debated several times and the present solution is a good compromise. No one has to click !While I respect your point about advertisers, don't forget there are also issues of lib...[/quote] I think it is the “commercial considerations” that is the issue rather than “libel”. Libel has little to do with recounting real experiences about a company. Libellous comments can be made about people companies, etc. and has nothing directly to do with companies advertising in LF. The “Libel” aspect is one used by some to justify protecting their commercial interests. I do not have and problem about this but think one just needs to be clear about what is happening (and thus how extensive advice people visiting the forum’s can expect). When people are allowed to recount their positive experiences about a company but not the negative experiences then people using those comments will receive biased and unrepresentative advice. Again, don’t take my comments as a criticism – just that people need to be aware of the constraints of this forum (in that “commercial considerations” outweigh quality and accuracy of advice presented).
  7. Again, having nothing to do with the rules, but just getting my 2p worth in; Maybe one aspect is what you are actually responding to. If there is a post asking “where can I find an English speaking accountant near St. Grots” and your wife is an English speaking accountant living in St Grots, then I would think that providing the details is only answering the question. If you were unsure you could always answer by PM. However, if you put a web site link in your signature you are including it on every post including those to which it has no relevance – which could easily be interpreted as advertising. This forum is slightly different to many in that it is run by a magazine that carries commercial advertising and thus has obvious commercial considerations. For example, I used an agent that virtually always advertises in LF to purchase my French Property and they were a complete disaster/rip-off. I have subsequently found out that many others have done the same and been ripped-off (by the same company). However, on the few occasions where people have posted their experiences on LF forum they have been quickly removed thus ensuring that others do not benefit from the experience, others can make the same mistakes and that LF maintain their advertising revenue. Unfortunately it is a constraint of the nature of this forum. As with all things in life people have to appreciate that what is published and what is said will (to an extent) always depend on constraints.
  8. I agree that it is slow (and has been for some time). I did e-mail LF about it and “technical” had already been told and were investigating. I mainly use TF and, when LF is slow TF is generally fine (i.e. much faster). Similarly, when LF is slow, other sites run fine so I doubt it is related to how busy the internet is. After the previous set of problems I departed and have gradually returned yet it seems the same things are happening again. I do hope they sort it out soon (and the poor functionality).
  9. Also worth considering is maybe any aspect of “you get what you pay for”. For example, if you pay “rock bottom” there may be a risk that you get “rock bottom service”. Thus, when things go down, you may not get them resolved with any sort of response time. When you need support (to e.g. resolve technical issues) you may end-up paying international premium rate call charges, etc. Minimum cost per month might not always result in the lowest costs per year.
  10. I don’t know about France but the UK are happy for dogs from New Zealand to enter the UK (subject to the same constraints as apply to e.g. a dog from France entering the UK). I would guess you would thus probably be fine entering France but do double check with the authorities first (or maybe the airline might have more info ?) http://www.defra.gov.uk/animalh/quarantine/pets/procedures/support-info/other.htm
  11. Deimos


    [quote]I would advise you against using Frontline as I think it has stopped working, the little blighters have adapted to this particular poison! There is a new product out which is applied in drop-on-skin f...[/quote] I'm not a vet and not involved in the industry so my 2p worth is just comment: The British authorities are quite paranoid about tick diseases and Frontline is still one of the approved treatments for dogs entering the UK. If it were no longer effective I would have expected the UK to remove it from their list of approved treatments (overlooking the traditional comments about how fast the UK Civil Service works – they are often quick to ban things, etc.). I thought about Advantix but had seen a few “scary” stories about bad reactions in some dogs (stories on the internet). I guess its much stronger stuff and given that I don’t like these chemicals much anyway that made me a bit less enthusiastic. Maybe there are always these types of “scare stories” and evert insecticide carried risks. However, I know my dogs are OK with Frontline and it seems to work OK so for the moment I’m sticking with that. Also, people with cats should be aware that it is very poisonous for cats and I’m sure I read somewhere that dogs living with cats should not really be treated with Advantix. This might not be the case but do check yourself.
  12. I would suggest you get the paint from a reputable supplier and ask them. When I painted some of my place there were a load of different paints for new walls, old walls, uneven walls, walls with cracks, etc., Water based or oil based, etc. Also, I needed to prime my walls first. When I purchased the paint (actually at Leroy Merlin) they were very helpful and went through exactly what was needed for the paint I had selected (again with their advice).
  13. I used V33 Lassure (“Aquistop”) over stripped paint (and I also over the window putty). The only place it has come off so far is actually some new wood that was very smooth and non-abosrbant. However, it was only painted last year so I would not have expected problems as yet. One other thing. If the existing paint is old – it may contain lead. When you purchased you should have had a lead report. Either way, unless you know it has not got lead (and that there is no lead paint under the white etc. – 110% sure), then do take precautions.
  14. Excellent idea. Enables one to put what people are writing in context (e.g. French experience or UK experience).. For example, people sometimes write “I have found that …..” and no idea if UK or France. Also allows to see if people live in France full time (e.g. location London), visit/commute/own a home (e.g. location London & Paris) or enjoy France and keeping up-to-date (e.g. location London)
  15. [quote]Many of the posts on this Forum indicate that, in France, interpretation of the rules varies not just from dept to dept but from commune to commune. Why then do posters seem to believe that asking ot...[/quote] Certainly interpretations vary in different communes (my French architect said that). However, there can also be benefits from asking on forums, maybe not to get definitive answers but to help in other ways. For me, I find responses (to these types of questions) on such forums useful for: a. Being aware of the issues and terms (e.g. Declaration de Traveaux) and the differences and what they mean helps me understand what is being said by others (as I have limited language skills). b. I have seen it said (and again a French architect has commented as well) that asking fro permission for something that you do not need permission for can complicate things a lot, particularly if it is in the “marginal” or interpretation areas. I would guess how true this is would depend on the nature of your local Marie(s). I have two (my house sits across the border between two communes) and each of the Maries has have very different “characters”. I would expect that the DDE is less prone to such things (though have no experience). Whilst the question was in regard to a specific situation, being an open forum the ensuing discussion can help make others aware of rules and regulations. I would agree with Iceni that responses posted to such questions do not provide definitive answers but might provide guidance and help in other ways.
  16. I’m not an expert but to my mind there is no change of use, no change of internal walls, no change to layout, no change to external stuff, etc. so I cannot see that you would need to tell anybody anout what you are doing.
  17. Re: different colours. Probably depends on the commune. Ask the Maire if there are rules and if so what (if any) choices. May be better to ask in this rather than just say what you want to do. Re: architect. I believe (from what others have posted and what I’ve been told) that the requirement for an architect is pretty “black & white” – if the habitable floor area of the house (after proposed work is completed and measured externally) is 170 sq m or more than you need an architect (and that is the sum of each floor area on the house, not the plan (or “footprint”).
  18. What sort of satellite system. If its Sky, then its not difficult to do DIY (provided you are happy doing DIY stuff). All I used was a “walking type compass” and the drill, etc. to mount the dish. Once the dish is mounted, its just aligning it and you can use the signal quality/strength on the Sky box to check that. I did the entire job alone in a couple of hours (may have been lucky with alignment ?). For info re: alignment for dish on http://www.brymar.co.uk/info/info.html Obviously, as with any DIY job involving ladders, power tools, etc. usual safety precautions, etc.
  19. Not relevant to the question (but relevant to a subsequent post) is that on some things proof of VAT having been paid is very important. If you sail a UK registered yacht into France you may be asked to prove that VAT has been paid on the boat. There are some people who have said (I have read in letters to magazines) that they will not sail their boat to France as (being 2nd hand with no documentary proof of VAT having been paid through the purchase/sale/etc paperwork trail) they consider the risk too great. I have no idea how often this is actually an issue but it is certainly talked about in yachting press. I used to sail happily into France without documentary proof of VAT on my (2nd hand) yacht and never had problems.
  20. I actually live close to the border between a 2 kiss region and a 4 kiss region. Where I live its 4 kisses, but next department (10 Km away) its two kisses. I have noticed that when (French) people from my department greet (French) people from the next department they often “get it wrong” (with one person going for a 3rd then 4th whilst the other person has stopped). Once I saw the locals “get it wrong” I gave up feeling embarrassed at any kissing mistakes I might make. I have also noticed that people really do notice the number plate on your car and when e.g. at dog club in the next department (the 2 kiss “zone”) most people notice and ask if you are from the other department – related ? Being a bloke, (and thus using handshakes until “invited” to greet with kisses) I have noticed that younger people seem to move from handshaking to kissing greeting far sooner than the older generation.
  21. A couple of other thoughts: Programs like “Place in the Sun” have researchers (and contact Property finders in the selected country) to search out the real best bargains – something may people might not have time to do. Search out bargains yes, but professionals can spend a lot of time doing that (particularly when being paid by TV Companies. Another thing is that some Satellite channels are repeating these property/move to France programs so some being shown can now quite old (and thus prices can be pretty out-of-date). I rather wish that the satellite channels concerned would state (at beginning, end or on the TV guide) when the program was made as this would help viewers get a feel for how current quoted prices might be.
  22. I have quite a strong dislike of the “moving to France” “documentaries” on TV. My dislike is not because of the personalities, presenters, etc. but that, from my experience, do not represent the difficulties and challenges facing people moving here. They are not documentaries but are entertainment. I believe that may “difficulties” are manufactured and many “solutions” unrealistic (at least from my experience). It may be obvious they are not factual – but it is a lot more obvious if you have already experience of “the real thing”. Their presentation style can mislead people and maybe give them unreal expectations. Before I moved I watched the Nippy & Nigel programs – not because I enjoyed them but because I was hungry for information. (In the example of “A Place in France”, the production company list it as a “Factual” program). A story (not mine, but from elsewhere) about a pair of monks who stand guard at the entrance to a small city, long, long ago. One night a family knock on the gates asking admission to the city. They ask the monks what the people are like. "What were they like where you lived before?" "Nasty, tale telling, untrustworthy people. " The monks say "You will find them much the same here." The family up and leave in search of somewhere better. The second night another family arrive and a similar discussion takes place. The family reply warmly "Oh they were the salt of the earth, friendly, kind and helpful." The monks say "You will find people much the same here." The monks open the gates to the family, and they live happily ever after.
  23. No experience of the breed so cannot pass comment on potential problems. Loads around in France: http://www.scc.asso.fr/home.php?num_niv_1=1&num_niv_2=3&num_niv_3=7&num_niv_4=7&module=whoswho&numero_scc_chien=89&type_recherche=chien&destination=detail&libelle=highland%20terrier&numero_groupe_chien=&retour=0 Then click of the Portées disponibles (or Club de la race) - depending on what you want. (Sorry, the long link messes -up teh formatting and you will have to cut and paste it into your browser as I don't use Internet Explorer and thus cannot (yet) make it a clickable link
  24. I run AVG - just was not sure if it was picked up by this as I could find no mention of it on their web site and didn't know what was detecting it. As my AVG is "up-to-date" I guess I'm (relatively) safe. Thanks for response.
  25. It quite likely to be due to the dispute between Open Transit (France Telecom/Wanadoo) and Cogent. I wrote a brief summary of “my take” on what is going on (copied below). It is affecting a whole load of sites in the US (and customers in France). Most Wanadoo customers are blaming Wanadoo (possibly because they know who Wanadoo are and how to contact them). However, I think it is a more complex situation and Open Transit may actually be doing “the right thing” (but clearly others, including Cogent, don’t agree with me). It is a commercial disagreement where Wanadoo have depeered Cogent and set-up an alternate route for Wanadoo customers to get and communicate with Cogent’s sites (or rather Cogent's customer's sites). However, Cogent have retaliated by sending all FT IP traffic into a “Black-Hole”, hence Wanadoo’s alternate route is not working because of Cogent. The bit I wrote earlier (others may have a different “take” on what is going on): It may not be Wanadoo that are causing the problems but Cogent. It is a another Peering War and Cogent have quite a reputation for starting these (many US people are pretty annoyed with Cogent about what they are doing in this respect). Cogent have done the same with other companies (e.g. Teleglobe) and it comes down to who “blinks first” in a battle of nerves. Previously those who have taken on Cogent in this regard have been too small. Open Transit (France Telecom/Wanadoo) may succeed. FT have actually set-up an alternative route to those sites covered by Cogent (via Sprint/Verio) and it is sounds like Cogent who are “black hole’ing” FT IP addresses. Sounds like some German carriers are about to do the same as FT/Wanadoo to Cogent as well. The boring bit: Congent’s pricing policy has been seen as disruptive for some time now. IP Carrier volumes are not growing significantly, thus for carrier companies to grow the need to take customers from competitors. Cogent are thought to be trying to eliminate competitors by exceptionally low pricing (they have recently borrowed $10bn which is no doubt helping sell services at such low prices, and guess what will happen to their prices once (some of their) competitors have gone). OT (FT/Wanadoo) have decided that they no longer wish to give Cogent FREE access to all their customers as they see this as helping Cogent sell services at dramatically below market rate. Peering is not a requirement for carriers to provide and is usually only done where it is of benefit to both partners in the peering relationship. It could be argued that it is Cogent who do not care about their customers or they would pay up of their transit services from OT. You could argue that OT/FT/Wanadoo are actually behaving responsibility to maintain stability within the internet (though this might depend of whether you work for (or are a “fan of”) Open Transit or Cogent). It is a complex situation and my dull summary is certainly not the whole situation (and may not be full representative) – just some dull background comments.
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