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How do you stay in touch with France between trips?

How do you stay in touch with France between trips?

Old Dec 29th, 2017, 12:55 PM
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How do you stay in touch with France between trips?

Here’s what I do, and it’s not enough. I could use some more ideas.

Instagram for photos of the areas we’ve traveled to or might travel to.
Every day I check an online newspaper of the area we travel to most often.
Maybe once a week I look at the regional online newspaper, ouest-france.fr.
Every day I check Fodor’s and a few other travel websites.
I occasionally check the Plus Beaux Villages website to see if a new village has qualified.
I’ll troll through our guidebooks for new ideas.
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Old Dec 29th, 2017, 12:57 PM
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We also get email updates on upcoming events from a few local tourist offices so we can feel sorry for ourselves about what we're missing.
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Old Dec 29th, 2017, 01:07 PM
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I like to read historical novels. Just finished Lisette's List. Just started the Templar's Last Secret...not a historical novel, but takes place in the Perigord region.

I also read the online news thelocal/fr.I'm also a fan of YouTube to get inspired.
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Old Dec 29th, 2017, 01:24 PM
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I subscribe to the France Today web site, which has very good articles and other bits of information; also bonjourparis.com. The tripadvisor.france forums are also worth reading.
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Old Dec 29th, 2017, 01:28 PM
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Old Dec 29th, 2017, 01:32 PM
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I don't need to stay in touch with France, but I do enjoy the France Today website a lot and I read The Local and Le Sudouest.
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Old Dec 29th, 2017, 02:18 PM
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Perhaps you are more a casual tourist and may not know French, but I belong to Alliance Francaise where I go to events, belong to a book group where we read a book in French once a month (this is organized through the Alliance Francaise, although I live in an area with a lot of French expats and there is another one through the local library, but one is enough for me), plus I subscribe to TV5 Monde on cable TV. If you know French, I think there are lots of other things you can do such as that. Or take classes, even at an advanced level, there are literature and other specialty classes unless you are very fluent. You'd have to live in a large city for these things, though.
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Old Dec 29th, 2017, 02:28 PM
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Thanks for some new ideas.

Calabria, somebody (on Fodors or the other place?) used to keep a running list of recommended books set in France. I read as many of them as I could but appreciate your new recommendations.

Calabria, thanks for mentioning youtube. It has lots of shows like Carnets de Julie and shorter clips from French TV channels.

Netflix for French movies.

I follow kerouac2 on anyportinastorm.proboards.com. He covers his neighborhood in Paris as well as his travels elsewhere in France. (And not only in France.)

I’m not on Facebook, but I’m able to read David Lebovitz and Chez Loulou there.

I used to enjoy a lot of blogs set in France, but have dropped most of them as they aren’t as France-focused as I’d like or are too infrequent. One that stands out is by two Australians living in the southern part of the Loire. By now they’re very well integrated into their village. They have a wide range of interests; you never know what they’ll feature each day. http://daysontheclaise.blogspot.com. They offer custom tours of the area so I check their tour website too.
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Old Dec 29th, 2017, 02:36 PM
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Christina, we were posting at the same time. I'm always trying to improve my French. I listen to a podcast, One thing in a French day--at a slower than normal speed. I used to listen to the news in easy French, but its vocabulary of disaster was no help in breakfast conversations at the B&Bs.

Can you tell me how to subscribe to TV 5?
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Old Dec 29th, 2017, 02:43 PM
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Are you listening to News in Slow French? That is a great program. It helped my DH a lot, though now I think he just relies on me to be his interpreter, which ticks me off so I send him into town alone to get stuff done Or I make him make telephone calls - that will ramp up your French mighty quick!
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Old Dec 29th, 2017, 02:51 PM
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StCirq, it was the Journal en francais facile, but as I said, I gave it up because I was learning too many disaster-related terms.

Phone calls are hard for me, even with the limited vocabulary needed to reserve for a meal or lodging.
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Old Dec 29th, 2017, 03:10 PM
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I do a lot of the things already mentioned. I regularly watch French news on our free to air channel which broadcasts news from several countries. This channel also has quite a few French movies to download as well.

I have an extensive collection of travel memoirs , some better than others.The ones I especially enjoy are about regions we have visited, and some have inspired us to visit new regions. I also like fiction set in France and often download a book free. Once again, some are better than others. I also have quite a few general books about France , mostly collected from charity shops. And not to forget my huge collection of French cookbooks. Some are old and some newer. The family know another is always welcome. I particularly enjoy the ones which have more than just recipes.

We like the carnets de Julie also. We watched several before our last trip. So I must look again for our next trip in Sept 2018. We also have several compilations of French music which we listen to often when we are enjoying a glass of wine.
And, of course, I enjoy the travel forums to see what others are doing and reading trip reports which give ideas for places. I also follow some blogs such as Days on the Claise ,Living the life in St Aignan, and French Village Diaries. Some others do not post as often but it is still interesting to check in occasionally.
We are in planning mode now with our flights booked and about to begin booking gites, so are doing lots of street viewing and looking at photos.
Happy travels in France!!!!
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Old Dec 29th, 2017, 03:19 PM
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Rhon, we'll be in France in September. Maybe this is the year we'll meet!

I went right over to French Village Diaries. That's a find for me; thank you.

Confession time--on cold winter Sunday afternoons I look at real estate websites, though I doubt we'd ever leave here. In the same vein, I check in with Survive France to see what the expats are coping with.
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Old Dec 29th, 2017, 03:36 PM
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We are flying in and out of Lyon again and in the bottom half of France again. We are looking at the Drome, the Var, the Tarn gorges, Puy de Dome, Charente, Lot , l'Herault, Ardeche and Burgundy. It will be ten weeks again. I am already thinking of 2020!! when I want to get back to places like Normandy and Brittany.
Ha! Ha! we also look at places to buy but it is just a dream. We will just keep returning to different places until P no longer feels comfortable driving on the opposite side of the road. Hopefully a few more trips.
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Old Dec 30th, 2017, 12:05 AM
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You can live stream Channel 5 on your computer.

Be careful for what you wish for...buying a property is expensive.
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Old Dec 30th, 2017, 05:04 AM
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Podcasts. There are lots of great Paris podcasts. The New Paris (Lindsey Tremuta), The Earful Tower, Paname, Paris Paysanne, 52 Martinis. Bloggers. Tons of them out there.
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Old Dec 30th, 2017, 06:25 AM
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fuzzbucket, an actual purchase is not in the cards for us. It's just entertainment.

In September of 2016 I told some people that if a certain very unlikely result happened in November we'd be moving to France, so now when they see us they ask when we're moving.
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Old Dec 30th, 2017, 06:58 AM
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I speak to my wife in French. I’ve learned thousands of ways to say “lazy, boring husband”. And reading about cycling in the French Alps is fun. You can tell what country a rider is from by what gear they use to climb mountains. Who knew?
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Old Dec 30th, 2017, 07:31 AM
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For those who have access to it, watching the Tour de France on a French-language channel will teach you a lot--and you'll see spectacular scenery. I am another who subscribes on cable to TV 5 Monde, as they call it now, and watch the Tour religiously. I knew nothing about cycling when I started, several years ago, but now it's an addiction, and I've learned a lot of French by trying to follow the announcers, who have very diverse regional accents. French TV (not surprisingly) is much better than US TV at giving regional history during the Tour and describing the history of some of the chateaux and cathedral the Tour passes; the helicopter photography is lovely.
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Old Dec 30th, 2017, 08:09 AM
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Oooooh, we didn't know about Les Carnets de Julie! Just watched the one about the Gers and loved it! Thanks for that.
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