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Daniel5791's Achievements


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  1. Poor John, Never mind...good comments nonetheless. Nothing wrong with being positive. I always seem to create controversy with anything I ever post!. :)
  2. Interesting! just had a look and it would seem that for less than 5000 pounds you can get take your pick of a multitude of  houses with heaps of land in an up and coming area of sunny Bulgaria. Skiing at the front door..next to no costs and friendly neighbours! Let's pack up and go...I'll buy 10 and bring my friends! ;)
  3. It's funny how much watching French films and listening to music has helped learn the language...The world movies channel here in Australia screens a lot of French film so there's plenty on offer. My first film was Amelie, and it still remains one of my favorites. Actually now I prefer watching French film over english speaking ones....much to my girlfriends dismay. As for music I found listening to Jacques Brel and Edith Piaf quite helpful(even if it is soooo very much in the past) but anything contemporary is good too. I really like Zazie at the moment. I may have taken things too far though as I can now sing La Marseillaise quite well! :)
  4. Thanks for the replies! Well naturally my comment about being a wine taster was meant as a bit of a joke........ I am in absolutely no position to make a move anywhere right now or in the immediate future, so for what it's worth I am staying here for a while anyway...I was really just curious about how the media reports and stats translate into what life has become in "these times" in real terms. Seems like the question has been answered.....:( Daniel
  5. Hi all, Just a generic question really.....It's always interesting to hear of the doom and gloom reported locally(Australia in this case)about the world economy and how awful things have become. Here things I think are really quite ok, and the only thing that will put us in the toilet is if we panic and lose the plot. We seem to be good at talking ourselves into recession because it's fashionable to do so! :) Our government has just given us all nearly $1000 AUD each to spend and be happy, so that should keep our casinos busy for another few weeks! ;) So I am asking....how are things generally in France today? My French friends at work say that unemployment is becoming a major issue and the economy of not only France but the whole of Europe really is in trouble. This bothers me personally as I still have dreams of my little farmhouse in the countryside being almost self sufficient with my dogs and  a little work on the side doing anything that appeals. (wine taster springs to mind) I am interested in hearing from anyone living in various parts of France about how life is generally and for those who are expats from the UK or anywhere really, are you planning on staying or do you feel the need to return home to ride out the storm? Thanks Daniel
  6. Don't tempt me muriel!!! I might just pack up and leave tomorrow!
  7. I agree completely. The bread is France is unbeatable. On a recent holiday I gorged on bread, cheese and red wine in various French locations and upon return to the UK, the difference was very clear. Now back in Australia I long once again  for those French breads and patisserie items all the time.
  8. I cannot believe how people can even call themselves human sometimes. He looks just like one of my dogs and it certainly made me shed a few tears seeing him cry like that and wandering around on his front legs. Having just today lose our family dog (living with my parents-not me) to leukaemia, it is even harder to understand that anyone can be so cruel. Sadly this kind of cruelty is as we all know not just isolated to Turkey, it goes on everywhere. Even here in Australia where you would think we are a civilised bunch, you hear of things that defy belief, and the penalties are just pathetic. The scumbags get a tiny fine that doesn't even cover the costs incurred by the RSPCA in prosecuting, and they usually walk away to do it again.
  9. You may want to check out the long term  leasing options through Peugeot, Citroen or Renault. You get a brand new car with roadside assist and over the long term works out to be quite cheap. Not sure if they do a full six month lease, but worth finding out.
  10. Funny, now that  I have REALLY had time to evaluate, I want to be back in France yesterday. There's a property I have had my eye on(several actually!) and it's upsetting me that I can't just head over and spill the cash. Would be a dumb and impulsive move, but the dream is still alive.....as is the prospect of a snow laden winter..would be great for me! oh well ..all in good time I guess..:) PS..is this French dream a QLD thing?? The Gold Coast is just not doing it for me anymore! :)
  11. I actually wouldn't feel hopeless about it at all. It's funny but now that I'm home I realise how much French I really did pick up without even knowing it. Just looking at road signs ,  going shopping and reading billboards will add hundreds of words to your vocab subconsciously. Even now I still listen online to RTL2 radio from France and I can decipher the commercials quite well.  I was watching an interview with the Tourde France French stage winner last night and understood what he was talking about...i wouldn't have before I had gone there. My experience there was too short, I needed longer in hindsight. But I was only there for a total of maybe 14 days and did gain a lot...I imagine a couple of months would be a different story altogether. I haven't given up...I just have a more realistic and less naive and romantic view on the whole pack up and leave thing. That'sa good thing. It's just about doing thorough research and planning....I would go for it, but use your head to guide you and not just your heart!
  12. Hi, I went on my voyage of discovery and returned home a few weeks ago. I started in Paris(which I loved), went to Rome for a bit and Amalfi Coast for a bit, went back to France via Switzerland and got myself a rental car and drove from Nice to Toulouse and lots of places in between in order to get  a feel for what France can offer me. Unfortunately my timetable was very tight, because I had to be back in London at a certain date, so I saw a lot of towns, but didn't really get the chance to immerse myself in any of them for any great length of time. :( My thoughts on a permanent move....well at times I thought this is the place for me(especially in towns like Narbonne-I really pictured a life there) and then at others when I was trying to manoever through peak hour traffic in Marseille and Toulouse and getting lost along the way, I was cursing the place and couldn't wait to leave for the UK. Now that I am home and the dust has settled, I can say that overall, France is great. It's friendly(even in Paris!! when you make an effort with people), it's for the most part cheap. (Supermarket food and certainly market food is excellent and I found that even with our hideous exchange rate it was cheaper in France than Aus for many things) It's beautiful in many parts, and there is terrific choice between coastal areas and the country, both of which have a lot to offer. My main worry and probably the deal breaker in making a move is employment. Although I have been learning French  (have stopped for the time being tho-needed to get a life and read other things and watch things other than french movies!) I realised that it would likely take me a few years at least to become comfortable to feel part of the place, and as such get gainful employment. I really didn't see any evidence that I could realistically step into any sort of job in France with my limited French, and make enough money to support myself to the extent that I could enjoy the environment in which I would be living in. So for now, things are on hold. I still have hopes of making a move to Europe at some stage, just where and when remains a mystery. Buying a property is only a very small part of the equation. There are bargains to be had and it will probably get even cheaper soon in some areas, but there is a lot to consider and that will take some time to sort out. Daniel
  13. HI there, I am doing similar to yourself, only it is only me and my girlfirend making the move. I haven't gone down the courses route yet, rather I have gathered up every resource I can get my hands on, and bombard myself with French from all sides. I started with a Lonely planet phrasebook and French for Dummies which I found a great start for basics. I signed up for some online courses.(Dailyfrenchpod.com and rocketfrench.com) both are good. I found dailyfrenchpod quite professional and helpful, although a bit daunting at times at the start. The best thing I did was buy the Harper Collins Robert unabridged French dictionary. A big book that you can't carry around, but extremely good for learning phrases, modern words, idioms and just about anything. Cost me about US$25 secondhand online. I keep it on my coffee table all the time for reference. I watch French movies and the French news. Read French newspapers online. I watch movies I know well on DVD and have the french subtitles on. Surprisingly I have found french music really good as well. Download the lyrics use the dictionary and before long phrases and words start to have meaning. I have been learning now for around 6 months I guess, and things are really starting to stick. There are times when I hear something new and think I have gone backwards or haven't progressed much, especially when my French friends at work talk amoungst themselves so quickly and I can't keep up after word 5 in the sentence-but most of the time it is quite satisfying. Actually learning the language has been great fun, I can't wait to get over there and try it out! :) Hope some of this helps you out. Bonne chance! Daniel
  14. I totally agree. It can be really frustrating to see a listing with 10 photos of the wonderful land and outbuildings, and absolutely nothing of the actual livable main house or part of it! It's the same here in Austraila. They will list an apartment that is 200 metres from the beach and all they show is a picture of the ocean. We know what a surf beach looks like! As someone has said though, I guess if you do the leg work and actually look past the photos and actually visit the properties if you can, the rewards may await you!
  15. Yeah, I wasn't expecting a warm winter by any means :) That kind of temp would suit me fine! Definitely though, good heating will be the order of the day!
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