Scotland

France Never Looked So Good

After five months in the US, the Barefoot Blogger is back in Uzes!


Travel day out of the US had its challenges with a delay on the runway because of a lightning storm. That’s nothing, however, compared to the angst of passing through Paris’ Charles deGaulle airport and train station. Fortunately my flight was not affected by the airline strike. Not so lucky on the train to Nimes. It was cancelled due to the rail strike. The next train was running so I reached Nimes only an hour laters ham expected.

While waiting for the train, passengers in the terminal were surprised to see armed security guards approaching the seating area. We were told there was an unidentified package found on the upper level. Everyone had to leave the terminal. I quickly headed for the lift and was one of the first to exit out to the open air level. After what seemed an eternity,  passengers were allowed to enter the terminal again. All clear.

During the “exercise” I realized I needed to be able to carry my bags without the aid of a trolley if I had to get out again. Let’s just say I’ll never travel with this much stuff,  even if I’m gone for another extended visit. Lesson learned.


Stops along the way

Each time I have journeyed in and out of France to visit the States, I’ve stopped off at a destination that’s on my “bucket list.” Before the holidays it was a trip to London and a few days in the Cotswolds in England. This trip I visited Scotland and the Isle of Skye.


Solo or Tour? That is the Question

Since I was a young child I’ve dreamed of going to the Isle of Skye–the ancestral home of my maternal grandfather. When I booked my flights for the holidays I chose to come back to France through Gatwick in London, then jump over to Glasgow to get to Skye.

The plan was to rent a car in Glasgow, then drive to Skye and the Outer Hebrides. During the long months away from Uzes, I had a change of heart. France was calling me. I settled on going through Glasgow then on a 3-day mini-bus tour of Skye. My thought was that I’d go back again if I really liked it.

The tour accomplished what I had hoped. It gave me a broad overview of Skye.The  confines of the 16-passenger bus and a chatty guide, however, convinced me I’m not a tour person. My next trip is solo. The saving grace of it all was that Skye was beyond beautiful. It never rained! Also, I met some adorable new women friends and I enjoyed sharing time and giggles with Hilda, my friend from London and Caromb who joined me.

Stirling Castle and a statue of my ancestor, King Robert the Bruce

Hilda and me being silly

What’s Next?

Uzes is becoming more and more like “home” to me. I’m more attuned to the rhyme and rhythm of the place; it’s easier to meet people and make friends; and I’m feeling more comfortable with the language.  Also, in the last two years, five Barefoot Blogger friends have moved to Uzes and more are on the way!

That’s all to say, there promises never to be a dull moment ahead. I hope you will continue to follow me on this crazy journey and stay in touch. I love hearing from you. If you have questions about taking a leap to live abroad, I’ll be glad to help if I can. If you just need some inspiration, perhaps something said or seen in the posts will spur you on.

Join me to see what 2016 brings! Stay tuned…

17 replies »

  1. Fantastic trip and there is something romantic and special about Scotland. The rolling hills and the lakes and the open space just seem to be a’callin!!

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  2. Keep writing…love hearing about what you are getting up to. We will meet sometime in the near future, you’re not alone loving Uzes…love the Saturday market…but not in the height of the summer…to many people…but you’ll have to come over my way ie to the Bouches-du-Rhône on the edge of the Vaucluse too… 🙂🙃🙂🇫🇷

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    • Thank you so much, Liz. Writing posts for the blog makes me feel like I’m sharing my time with good friends. I’d love to see your part of France, too. Have so much traveling to do!

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  3. I’m glad you made it. I was wondering why there were no posts yet after you had indicated you were leaving the US around the beginning of June. I only recently thought that you might have taken a circuitous route.

    I heard mention of French strikes in some of my French lessons. I am beginning to wonder how frequent they are.

    Did you keep your same apartment while you were in the US or do you have to rent a new one? Did you take a bus or car from Nîmes to Uzès? I plan to rent a car when I visit and I wonder how complicated it is to get out of Nîmes to get to Uzès.

    I hope I get to meet you in a few months.

    Chris

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    • It’s very curious about the strikes. It’s hard to tell what’s actually stopped or still running. Seems you just need to keep close attention to your own flight and train reservations. Train to Uzes was the most confusing because it was cancelled. Not even brilliant I went to the rail station could o find another train that was running. Just be patient and buy cancellation insurance for very thing! I stayed with my son and family in the US to help with arrival of a new grand baby. Friends drive my car to pick me up at the Nimes train station. There are regular buses from the train station to the center of Uzes but you need to check the schedule. If all else fails you can get a taxi for about 50 euros. Please do let me know when you’re on your way. Bon voyage!!

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  4. Hi there,

    I am on the outskirts of Uzes and spend about four months a year at our house but quite often on my own. I wonder if you ever host get togethers for like minded people in the area who spend all or part of the year here? I would love to meet some more people in the area.

    Kind regards Joanne Heynen

    >

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