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cigalechanta May 7th, 2011 06:21 PM

Things I miss about France
Since I can no longer afford to travel due to many problems.It doesn't stop remembering my favorite moments or when I learned how important it is to say hello and goodbye
when shopping. Something we, in America,, should adapt. In Tro, A uville, at a favorite bistro,a beautil french woman sitting next to me, showed me how to eat moules.
use an empty hinged mussel shell as a PINCHER, iN pARIS, on the street a young Parisean showed mr how she put up her hair without pins. For me, a treaseared
tip as I am allergic to hair pins.

jamikins May 7th, 2011 06:35 PM

I am sorry you are unable to travel. France is so special to us, so many memories...lovely to hear about yours! May you be able to travel soon!!!

cynthia_booker May 7th, 2011 07:00 PM

Feeling a little sentimental? Me, too, like these days when I also think I will not be able to travel much, if any, in the future. I do enjoy my sweet memories, although I try to keep that reverie to a minimum so as not to make me sad in general.

goddesstogo May 7th, 2011 07:10 PM

Sigh. I'm feeling the same. Yesterday I was looking up some information for a friend who's going to London and Paris soon so I was skimming over my long London thread from last fall. It made me so homesick for my time there. As I've recently lost my job, I don't think travel (except for short, local jaunts) will be in my near future. If I get a job, I won't have the time off, and if I don't get a job, I won't have the money.


jamikins May 7th, 2011 07:12 PM

Come stay with us goddess!!!! You are welcome anytime!!

TPAYT May 7th, 2011 07:22 PM

I have to agree about saying hello and goodbye, the French are so polite and I love that.

We also learned to slow down---a glass of wine, a cafe creme---take your time, enjoy. Buy your fresh bread and pastry every day, and go to the place where they squeeze the oranges for juice right in front of you.

In the shops, I love that they take care of you----you fold the scarf this way, Oh Madame, this necklace, this bracelet.

I learned to walk in Paris and enjoy the surroundings or take the Metro. We live in a "car" society---3 blocks to the store, drive.

In the smaller towns we loved the enthusiasm and interest we felt from the French---where are you from? Are you enjoying France? etc.

I don't know how much longer we will be able to travel, but when I dream, I dream of France.

Thank you for this thread, it really lifted my spirits. =D>

goddesstogo May 7th, 2011 07:58 PM

Hi jamikins,
Well, you never know. One day you might come home from work to find me sitting on your doorstep!

StCirq May 7th, 2011 08:12 PM

I feel your pain, cigale, as I've been too "poor" (and I realize that's a relative term) to go back to France for 2 years, even though I have a house there.

I had a brainstroke a few weeks ago, though. I have this couple - two hardworking, "poor" I suppose, African-Americans who have worked their butts off for me for the past 5 years here in and around out my parents' house, moving me out of my VA house, lawn work, helping us clean out our DC house this past few weeks and moving to our new place and more. They are such decent, wonderful people, and all their lives, both of them have harbored a desire to go to France (something we just discovered after sitting around with them one night after a particularly heavy-duty moving day). And they both just went nuts when I gave them a picture book of the Dordogne.

So I am going to take them to France. I'm going to pay their airfare (next February or early March) and train fare and expenses while there. And they are going to clean out my French house and get everything spic and span and up and running again and clear out the "North Forty" and all the grounds...and I'll have a place that's livable or rentable or sellable. And they will have had the experience of a lifetime.

I'm going to do all this with a bit of an inheritance from my dad, who loved that place in France as if it were his own. I think he would be really glad that I would spend his money to take two complete neophytes to France with me (but really hard-working ones), and African-Americans at that (we don't have a lot of those in the Dordogne, and that may be an issue, too - not for me).

The older I get, the more I want to make "presents" to other people who have been good to me. This couple has been so amazingly good to me, I feel I owe them the world. I'll give them France, as it's all I can afford.

This will be the trip of a lifetime. Imagine if you are a regular traveler to France and you are hosting two complete neophytes -we'll be fine at my house, which is in the middle of nowhere and I can deal with the neighbors, etc., but two days in Paris or so...I'll have to don my tourguide gear

Tahuya May 7th, 2011 08:20 PM

That is just wonderful StCirq.

sap May 7th, 2011 09:16 PM

What a brilliant, warm and generous idea, StCirq. I hope all goes well for you and this special couple.

Cigalechante, your memories have helped so many. I am sorry they cannot be repeated just yet, but it is so nice that you value the experiences you have had and still have the ability to treasure and recall the highlights at will. I fear for the Alzheimer's that is inherent in my family, which steals past, present and future. You are fortunate in your ability to re-experience those good times in your mind and heart -- and we are in turn lucky that you are so sweet to share your knowledge with us. I hope that someday you will be able to visit France again in both body and soul. Life has a funny way of giving back just when you thought all had been taken away.

ruedebuci May 7th, 2011 09:43 PM

I am sorry you can no longer travel. That is one of my greatest fears. As it is, I'm sad that I will not be able to go to Paris this year $$, but next year should be fine.I hope.

Could you please share how you put up your hair without hair pins?? I'd love to know that trick, thanks.

cigalechanta May 8th, 2011 09:46 AM

gather you hair in back. twist it to the ends,
lift it up making a circle and put the ends through.
the ends will be sticking out.

klondiketoo May 8th, 2011 11:10 AM

I remember so many of your fabulous posts/reports over the years. Isn't it wonderful how an image, a smell, or a sound can bring back the whole experience is a matter of seconds?!

We are still traveling because my husband works in Europe, but at 68 we know it is a matter of time, perhaps just a few years, before our life situation will change and we will be be "mentally traveling" more than making any actual trips. But we'll always have the memories of all the great and interesting people we ineracted with, just as you point out.

Thanks for making us stop and appreciate the lucky life we've had!!!

Carlux May 8th, 2011 12:00 PM

Today we took South African friends to St Genies - a stunning town full of lauze roofs, and a good Sunday market. Bought foie gras, asparagus, cheese, cherries, and more , including a nut cake that was guaranteed to last 3 weeks. We are thinking of going back to complain about the fact that it didn't last longer than one lunch!

Then to St Crepin, a picture book chateau, and just past it, the most amazing poppy fields we have seen in years. Back home to participate in the 8 May memorial service in our village, followed by a glass of bubbly. Lunch on the terrace in the sun. (We're having the most amazing weather, which is unfortunately leading up to drought over most of France, but some days are wonderful.)

We dealt with the travel issue by moving here. Highly recommended.

TDudette May 8th, 2011 02:02 PM

I'm sorry for whatever is keeping you from traveling, Mimi. It too will be more difficult for me without DH. However, you and I have such lovely memories. I'm glad DH and I traveled when it wasn't quite so expensive or time-consuming. Hope you can get some consolation from that as well. Keep sharing here on Fodors!

Gwendolynn May 8th, 2011 02:29 PM

My husband's health has probably put and end to our travels. Even tho he' still planning trips!
He always made elaborate photo albums of our major trips....... "to look at when I'm too old to travel..." So far, he hasn't been looking at the albums.

Who knows.... life is full of surprises ...we all may get another chance.

Gwendolynn May 8th, 2011 02:29 PM

P.S. I would love to be as generous and sharing as St. Cirq.

Judy May 8th, 2011 02:40 PM

cigalechanta and TDudette, perhaps you two should meet and plan a trip. Sharing accommodations makes the trip more affordable and you both seem like real travelers so may be compatible.

bardo1 May 8th, 2011 02:54 PM

St. Cirq - I've done somthing similar twice now. Wonderful idea! You gift will give as much to you to the lucky couple. Truly the example of "it is in giving that we receive".

ellen75005 May 8th, 2011 03:11 PM

Mimi, your post is so bittersweet. It's those little things that we remember best, isn't it? I'm still working, although thinking about retiring. My husband is retired (although he works full-time) and more and more I think we should take advantage of the time we still have to travel while we still can. You never know what's around the corner.

St Cirq, this will truly be a trip of a lifetime for you - and your friends. I hope you will let us be a part of that trip.

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