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Will

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Everything posted by Will

  1. Just for interest, Laden is one of the brand names used by Whirlpool, which also owns Bauknecht, Maytag and KitchenAid among others, and makes appliances for Ikea.

    Fagor is basically a Spanish brand, which also makes Brandt and De Dietrich.

    Bosch is in fact a joint venture between Robert Bosch and Siemens, that also makes Neff and Gaggenau appliances.

     

  2. Will

    UKIP

    I'd rather vote Conservative than UKIP. And that's saying something...
  3. We had something similar with a freesat system recently - both boxes (a Humax recorder and a Humax HD single-channel) lost certain channels and could not retune automatically after doing a system reset. This coincided with the BBC changing satellites for BBC News channel, some regional BBC1 channels, Alba and BBC3/BBC4. A manual tune reinstated these, but we had lost the freesat EPG so they were all on non-freesat chennel numbers.

    The problem was that the dish had been knocked, so was slightly distorted and out of alignment, combined with an intermittent fault on the LNB. Replacement of the dish and LNB, in a better location where it was less likely to suffer damage in future, solved the problem.

    I suggest you try looking at the various regional channels on your freesat box (channels 950 upwards) to check that you can get them all. Note that you will probably only find ITV London on the EPG, but there should be variants of BBC1 and BBC2, also alternative C4 transmissions.

    I don't know the Goodmans box, but on the Humaxes you can do a 'non-freesat tune' which finds all available channels, including scrambled Sky ones (though you won't see these programmes without a decoder card). This will give you the regional ITV transmissions.

  4. Google translation of the link above, for those who may need help with French texts:

    Attention Government of MM. François Hollande and Jean-Marc Ayrault

    In his new budget bill, the Government wants to massively increase taxes and charges on home jobs from 1 January 2013. This will cause the destruction of tens of thousands of jobs and will complicate the lives of millions of families, no social benefits or tax advice. Do not be the turkey stuffing and fiscal policy. Let us mobilize to save jobs at home! And as pigeons, are pushing the Government. In 1992, reducing payroll taxes on employment at home, Martine Aubry has created hundreds of thousands of jobs that have improved the lives of the French. Eliminating these brutally reductions in charges and taxes, hourly jobs at home will increase dramatically: - Use a caregiver or a nanny full time in his family cost about 5000 euros per year per household! 2500 euros half-time, etc ... - Pay 40 hours tutoring her child cost 300 euros more expensive! who have the means to pay for such increases? We are all Turkeys! We nannies, housekeepers , tutors, aids elderly or disabled gardeners, mechanics ... want to continue working legally and at an affordable price to make life easier for our customers, parents, children and elderly person. mothers and fathers We have family absolutely need this support to continue to work and raise our children in the best conditions. And most of us can not take a 25 to 40% of the hourly cost of such aid. Employment at home is not a tax shelter, but a social treasure! - Keep and educating children is not a "tax shelter"! - Helping older people to remain at home is not a "tax shelter"! - Allowing women to continue to work, it is not a "tax shelter! . " Government takes the risk of creating a considerable social and economic case: - The inevitable reduction in hours and the return of "moonlighting" will weaken tens of thousands of unskilled jobs, returning the most fragile of us precariousness. - Students and teachers who were there additional income will lose purchasing power valuable, even indispensable to finance their studies. - The supervision and education of our children suffer. - A sector economic future, in full development, and jobs can not be relocated, will be massacred. - The destruction of jobs and return to work in black will remove additional fiscal resources expected by the Government. Too much tax kills tax. Michel Sapin, Minister of Labour, Pierre Moscovici, Minister of Economy, Marisol Touraine, Minister of Social Affairs, Mrs. Sylvia Pinel, Minister for Crafts, Trade and Tourism , Mrs Dominique Bertinotti, Minister of Family, Listen to us before it is too late! Come back to this disastrous project which goes against the objective of recovery in justice. # We are not turkeys! http://www.petition-dindons.fr Sign the petition

  5. Although we sincerely hope this actually comes to fruition, Euroferries does have a bit of a history for premature enunciation - i.e. announcing a service before anything is actually agreed (See here for one example - there are  plenty of others to be found online, including an abortive attempt to acquire a totally unsuitable ferry from Canada).

    At least this time round the ship being chartered actually exists, though those in the business believe it's the wrong vessel on the wrong route - shades of LD Lines and Norman Arrow.

    Euroferries as a company has actually been around for a long time, at least seven years, though it has yet to start its own ferry service. It was formed by the former Hoverspeed management, and originally was meant to be a competitor to Speedferries, built and run on a more stable business footing.

  6. It's too late for Idun now, but there is a program called msgtag (www.msgtag.com) which notifies you when a message is opened (of course you can't be sure that the receipient has actually read it - you do know it has been received though). You have to have Msgtag activated when you send the message. There is a basic free version, and a paid-for one (which I have used for ages) that is customisable and works with multiple email accounts.

    The problem with the receipt in Outloook etc is that the recipient can opt not to send receipts. Msgtag gets round that.

    (posted from Norway, where Idun is a make of tomato ketchup)

  7. We had a standard height short wheelbase Transit, which was just under 5m long and just over 2m height. I used to book it on the ferry as a motorhome, which cost virtually the same as a car, and we seemed to get away with that because it had a window in the sliding side door. That always worked OK with Brittany Ferries and P&O as it was then - though I think LD is a bit more fussy about vans.

  8. The neighbour is right, it is a direct equivalent to 'ay oop me dook' which was certainly very common when I lived in Derbyshire - in fact it was the use of that phrase that was said to characterise locals from the area near Belper where I was. Some sources suggest that the origin of the East Midland phrase is this same French term, although others suggest it comes from 'The Dukeries', the area around Worksop in North Notts. The phrase in French seems perfectly innocent, so I don't know why the neighbour may have felt sheepish.

    I don't think it's purely local to your area - a quick Google showed it is also current in Belgium, and comes up frequently in lists of French terms of endearment.

  9. Have you looked at www.lelynx.fr? It's the French site of confused.com. And yes, I know that confused.com and lelynx.fr are owned by the same people that own Admiral, which is a good and competitive company with appalling customer service, but the British site doesn't plug the Admiral product unduly, so the French one may be the same.

    Also, because many of the people who go for third party only cover tend to be those who are bad risks, a lot of insurers are biased against giving basic cover, and it can be almost as expensive, sometimes more, than comprehensive, so it's always worth getting a quote for different levels of cover.

  10. Thanks for the link Norman, very interesting. I suppose if there is any sort of pattern, it's that most of them are either close to larger centres of population and employment, in the same way that somewhere like Surrey or Bucks contains 'prosperous' towns which attract wealthy commuters, or are places on the coast that are desirable to live. The biggest surprise for me was Saint-Denis, which when I have been there was certainly the ar5eh0le of all of France. But a lot of effort has obviously been made to improve things.

  11. The question of taking payments by card often seems to crop up. But the cost of renting the equipment etc seems to put most B&B owners off. This may be of interest: www.payatrader.com.

    I don't know if it works, or is available, for French bank accounts and/or credit cards, but may be worth looking at for dealing with UK customers. It seems to be aimed at providers of household services rather than B&B/holiday let owners, but don't see why I shouldn't work for you.

    I also saw something recently that looked similar, but worked with a mobile phone. I should have made a note of the name.

  12. All you have to do is copy and paste the web address - this link should be OK.

    http://carolineclarkson.blogs.france24.com/article/2012/08/10/pets-abandoned-their-thousands-dark-side-summer-france-0

    Dogs and cats in France are indeed supposed to have tattoos or microchips to enable them to be traced, but pet owners who are irresponsible enough to dump animals are hardly likely to comply with that requirement. The number of animals Mrs Will has rescued in France that carried no marking is testament to that.

     

  13. Q, our Miele sometimes does something like what you describe, i.e. smells, makes odd noises and loses suction, and it also tries to pop the bag cover open by itself. That's a sign that the Hepa filter needs cleaning, or, better, changing. I don't know what model your is; ours is called a 'Solution', it's blue in colour, and is otherwise identical to the cat/dog version but comes with extra tools for cleaning hard floors.

    We've had just about all makes in the past, including building up a Dyson graveyard, and the Miele is the only one which shows any signs of longevity and decent performance. There was some resistance at first because a cleaner with bags looked like a step backwards, but we are convinced now. I think the Sebo is equally as good. But having said that, in England at present we have a bagless upright Vax which came as a bonus deal with a carpet washer, and that seem very good too. I'd definitely steer clear of any French vacuums, which seem to cost a lot of money for rubbish performance.

  14. I like them, I have never found it necessary to water down the paint, in fact the thicker the paint the better the finish and the coverage, I find. I certainly wouldn't consider diluting French paint.

    The only time I have found that a roller is better is when painting on heavily-embossed paper or (perish the thought) the dreadful woodchip. I am sure I have bought paint pads in France in the past, but I think they were comparatively expensive.

  15. Don't forget either that a seller is legally bound to accept an offer (or I suppose we should say the first unconditional offer) at the asking price, thus avoiding the sort of gazumping situations that happened in the English market when times were better.

    I believe that in French law a verbal contract is no less legally binding than a written one - it's just somewhat harder to prove.

  16. I'd forgotten all about that forum. Haven't been there for years; I got kicked off in the early days, if I remember correctly. I think because I got an email from the then owner of the forum more or less ordering me to "post some pictures of my house restoration" in a bit of the forum he'd set up for doing that. I refused, because I didn't want personal information plastered over the Internet, and anyway we bought the house in its 'restored' state, it having actually been done by a Corsican a few years previously. F got upset with that for some reason - maybe he couldn't get his head round the fact that French nationals sometimes restore houses themselves.

    I also remember that he used the forum for a personal crusade against a hotel (which I don't think was even in France) where he had stayed and had a bad experience. I did try returning, along with a couple of other banned members (one of whom was barred for posting pictures of a kitten), under a totally different identity, but that didn't last long.

    I always imagined Herr Horn as looking rather like Herr Flick of the Gestapo from Allo Allo. The alias is in fact quite close to his real-life name.

    Didn't they have another big clear out not long ago, maybe it was when they got bought out, resulting in some of the mods going off in a huff and starting their own, green-coloured, France forum?

  17. There may be a way round this. If you are self-employed in Britain, you can send yourself on 'assignment' to do some work overseas. That means you carry on declaring and paying tax to UK, and, more importantly, you pay NI to UK but have an official form that allows you to use the French health system legally as a 'migrant worker'. That means you pay for doctor visits, medication etc, but you get the standard French percentage refunded.

    I'm not sure which of the current forms you need, it's one of the incarnations of the S1 or A1 (when I was doing something similar it was E101/E128). You need to be doing the same sort of work in France as you do in UK, without a significant break, and you should retain your UK address (this is not essential, but it does provide evidence of the temporary nature of the arrangement). It only works for a limited time - you would probably get a couple of years worth before the French and British authorities decide that you live in France and need to register and pay your dues there.

    I can't guarantee this will work for you; it depends on individual circumstances and the sort of work you do, but it's worth looking into.

    One possible fly in the ointment is insurance - even though your UK insurer may say you are covered, this is not likely to be acceptable as 'assurance décennale' which you must have in France for most types of building work.

  18. The one we have in France is a non-upright Miele, which, like Rabbie's, has proved by far the best at picking up animal hair, and in a house with up to four dogs and a score or so of cats at various times, it has been tested to well over the limit. Q please note - it came with hard floor and carpet heads and is particularly good on rugs. Various Dysons have been consigned to the vacuum graveyard (or cleaned out and flogged to AngloInfo users, which is probably a worse fate). We haven't had a Sebo. but by all accounts they are excellent as well.

    In England we are currently using a Vax bagless upright which came as part of a deal with a carpet washer, so was virtually free. It's surprisingly good, too.

  19. I found I can log in using Internet Explorer, but in Firefox it rejects my user email and password

     

  20. Just got back from the count in our very small commune (accompanied by two very generous plastic cups of pastis provided by M le maire). Sarko 20 votes, Hollande 7 votes, 3 empty envelopes, 1 blank. General feeling that Hollande would win in a close contest, and general dissatisfaction with either candidate and a lot of pessimism for the future of the French economy.

  21. [quote user="pachapapa"]

    Chirac was a gentleman and a Gaullist with character and some moral scruples.

    [/quote]

    So not this Jacques Chirac then

  22. Talking about a 'sense of righteousness' (which we were a few posts back) - what about the fuss in Germany over a clothing brand, Thor Steinar, that has been forced to close some of its shops, named 'Brevik' after a town near Oslo - not 'Breivik' as in the mass killer - because it was thought to appeal to Neo-Nazis and to be "quite unacceptable"? The company, apparently, habitually uses Norwegian place names for its brands, which have a Scandinavian theme.

    See here (admittedly the story is a few weeks old now).

  23. We all know that French customs are particularly hot on fake Rolexes, Gucci etc. Wonder what they would make of the fact that there is a shop in Dubai, of all places (surely not the same Dubai that has a ski slope with real snow in the middle of the desert, on top of a branch of Carrefour in fact) selling fake Primark tat? Looks about 24 days too late...

    See here.

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