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Old 10-31-2008, 01:39 PM
 
Location: San Francisco Bay Area
46 posts, read 187,073 times
Reputation: 25

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Quote:
Originally Posted by pigeonhole View Post
France ?
Weather is crap, people are crap, it's expensive, they believe they are the navel of the world, if u think you'll get less stress in Paris than in NYC, "keep on dreamin'"...I guess "the grass is always greener, etc"
Wow, I cannot believe that people are still buying into the most ridiculous of stereotypes. To say that the weather and PEOPLE of an entire country, we're talking more than 60 million here, are a derogative term is despicable. Perhaps, pigeonhole, your negative attitude itself is causing you to see an entire country in such a bad light. You need to give people a chance before you unfairly judge them. Personally, I have lived in France and I did not find the majority of people to be rude and ethnocentric at all. There may be a select few French people who feel that way, but it's not fair to say that about an entire country. And if you're looking for peace and quiet I wouldn't go to Paris because of the noise, pollution, etc. But the same can be said for any American city. As for the weather, it varies in the different parts of the country. There's more rain, and thus humidity, in the Northwest, snow in the Pyrenees and the Alps, and sun and wind in the South. I think France would be a great place to retire, and might do it myself one day.
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Old 10-31-2008, 01:46 PM
 
Location: Earth at the moment
321 posts, read 1,020,163 times
Reputation: 128
Nice, is a Nice place, hehe...
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Old 10-31-2008, 02:30 PM
 
5,823 posts, read 10,173,731 times
Reputation: 4537
There is only one place I love in France, it's my small village nestled at the foot of the Pyrenees North of Perpignan, it's real Paradise.
If you want to know more about it, send me a private e-mail,naturelover17
Later on ,if I've got enough pension, I'd like to retire down there half the time, and spend the winter in Mexico, Costa-Rica or Florida...
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Old 11-01-2008, 08:13 AM
 
Location: Brusssels
1,933 posts, read 3,423,047 times
Reputation: 1895
Quote:
Originally Posted by Voltaire View Post
Hey everyone,

In 5 years I am planning on retiring from my job (based in New York, but spend a lot of time in the UK too) and settling down to a more peaceful life. Lately, while trying to decide on the perfect location to call home in the year 2013 or 2014, whenever, I have decided on France. I could go into a big long explanation of my reasons for this, but I won't, because who really cares?

Anyway, if anyone on here is French, or has lived in France, could you please give me hints on what cities to see (I need to spend the next half decade exploring the country) and the major positive and negative aspects of life there. I don't have any real specific questions yet, but when I do I'll ask them. I'm just looking for general observations and opinions.

Thanks.

Just so you know, I speak French, have studied French history, and have been to France before.

Sounds like a great plan.

Personally, I love the Alpine region running from Grenoble to Chamonix (where I used to live) but I have yet to visit any corner of France I did not enjoy.

Please tell us more about what you consider important in a place to live and I'll be happy to offer more specific thoughts.
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Old 11-01-2008, 10:27 AM
 
11,906 posts, read 32,974,609 times
Reputation: 8685
Quote:
Originally Posted by Voltaire View Post
Hey everyone,

In 5 years I am planning on retiring from my job (based in New York, but spend a lot of time in the UK too) and settling down to a more peaceful life. Lately, while trying to decide on the perfect location to call home in the year 2013 or 2014, whenever, I have decided on France. I could go into a big long explanation of my reasons for this, but I won't, because who really cares?

Anyway, if anyone on here is French, or has lived in France, could you please give me hints on what cities to see (I need to spend the next half decade exploring the country) and the major positive and negative aspects of life there. I don't have any real specific questions yet, but when I do I'll ask them. I'm just looking for general observations and opinions.

Thanks.

Just so you know, I speak French, have studied French history, and have been to France before.
I don't blame you. Since even most small towns in France have a public transportation system and are VERY walkable, you can live just fine without having a car just about anywhere in France. While I love the US, I've also thought about someday retiring to France.

What kind of weather do you like? Since most towns in France have similar development patterns, and all of France has the same tax structure, weather might be the determining factor.

People think I'm insane when I say this, but I looove the north of France (le Nord-Pas de Calais). The weather is cool and damp most of the year, but that's fine with me. The cost of living there is very inexpensive. Lille is a large city, its nickname is "petit Paris" and it offers just about everything you can find in any other big city in the world. It's got a fabulous public transportation network, it's a very young and dynamic city, and it's a quick TGV ride from Paris, London, and Brussels. The fact that it's NOT touristy is a big plus in my book.

Arras is a beautiful city in the Pas de Calais. It's also right on the TGV line to Paris. I also like Boulogne-sur-mer and Valenciennes.

I'm also in love with the Alsace region. Strasbourg itself is gorgeous, and it offers four very distinct, very beautiful seasons. Christmas in Alsace is spectacular. Check out some of the smaller towns around there such as Haguenau, Obernai, or Colmar.

I have found the French people to be warm and accueillants, especially once you leave Paris. Every time I go to France I'm invited to dinner at total strangers' homes. I've found that people who say the French are rude are generally rude themselves and don't know how to behave in a foreign country.

Let me see if I can drag up some pics of the places I mentioned:

ARRAS (62 - Pas de Calais)





BOULOGNE-SUR-MER (62 - Pas de Calais)





COLMAR (68 - Haut-Rhin)





HAGUENAU (67 - Bas-Rhin)





LILLE (59 - Nord)





STRASBOURG (67 - Bas-Rhin)





VALENCIENNES (59 - Nord)




Last edited by JMT; 10-06-2011 at 06:49 AM..
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Old 11-01-2008, 12:59 PM
 
Location: AZ Desert Rat (NOT!)
20 posts, read 54,578 times
Reputation: 43
Default France

Retiring in France...quel bonne idee! I would also suggest southwestern France: the Dordogne region is fabulous. If you feel the need to be in a larger city, Bordeaux is lovely and is on the coast. In the Massif Central, Clermont-Ferrand and the Cantal are beautiful, but the weather is not that great! Depends on what you are looking for but I particularly favor the Southwest of France. And, I, too, would love to retire there.
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Old 11-01-2008, 04:11 PM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
271 posts, read 957,001 times
Reputation: 133
I would love to go to school there, to help learn the language.
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Old 11-01-2008, 09:32 PM
 
11,906 posts, read 32,974,609 times
Reputation: 8685
Quote:
Originally Posted by rmebrt View Post
Retiring in France...quel bonne idee! I would also suggest southwestern France: the Dordogne region is fabulous. If you feel the need to be in a larger city, Bordeaux is lovely and is on the coast. In the Massif Central, Clermont-Ferrand and the Cantal are beautiful, but the weather is not that great! Depends on what you are looking for but I particularly favor the Southwest of France. And, I, too, would love to retire there.
I'm with you on the Massif Central. I spent a summer near Clermont-Ferrand a few years ago. It was paradise. They sure do know how to eat well in that part of France. And considering how well they eat everywhere else in France, that's saying something.

You've got the old spa towns of Vichy and Perrier around there, too. It's great.
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Old 11-01-2008, 09:37 PM
 
Location: southern california
55,731 posts, read 74,738,506 times
Reputation: 48264
for those of us who love france its takes bout 5 years or less to beat the love out of us. you got to move to france to have this happen there is no other way.
american privilege and benefits and freedom and citizenship mean nothing unless you live without them for a long time. the great error of most francophiles, they think bek they speak the language and know the culture they will be accepted and loved in france. unless of course you a stinking rich. in which case like my old friend gloria from NO used to say, huck, when you got money everyplace is mardi gras.
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Old 11-02-2008, 03:42 AM
 
Location: on an island
13,382 posts, read 40,956,094 times
Reputation: 13245
I have a feeling you speak the truth, Huck. It will be interesting to see what happens with our older son who lives there; he doesn't have plans to stay forever but who knows.
Toulouse has also been called petite Paris; its old town is lovely.
Agree about the Massif. Clermont-Ferrand has a nice university vibe, too. Love Cantal cheese.
Also agree about Strasbourg and the surrounding towns--Obernai was delightful.
Strasbourg, the cathedral and European Parliament:

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