Around France

Living in the South of France

There’s nothing ordinary about living in the South of France, especially in the spring. There’s always a festival, a brocante, a party, or something extraordinary going on.

Here are a few snippets on “Living in the South of France” in May.

Lunch with friends

Now that everyone who has been away from Uzès for the winter is back, meeting friends for lunch is a must for catching up. Even though there were eight of us, a little backstreet cafe was perfect for our Saturday get-together.

Ever eaten couteaux? They’re razor clams from the Mediterranean. A delicacy in a tiny bite.

Living in the South of France

Couteaux – Razor Clams

Roman Games in Nimes 

Each May in nearby NImes, a historical reenactment is staged in the ancient arena. It’s world-class. The Great Roman Games were presented just as 2000 years ago — featuring chariot races, gladiators, and Roman dignitaries,

This year the theme was “Barbarian Kings.” Romans and barbarian battles that raged throughout this area from 113 to 101 BC were brilliantly recreated during the 2+ hour show. The production crew that moved seemingly effortlessly on the arena floor constructed a near-lifesize fortress, a village market, and a realistic representation of the port in Marseille. For a snippet, view the video below.


Shopping at IKEA

My new apartment in Uzès is far from furnished as I’d like it. Moving from “Rapunzel’s Tower” to my ground-level flat was more complicated than I thought. In just five years, I accumulated much stuff that would not fit. Yet, I’m still shopping.

Living in south France, I’ve learned the French love IKEA. I haven’t checked IKEA in the US lately, but the store in Avignon is different and better than any I’ve seen. Right now, shelving and storage for my kitchen is my priority.

Interestingly, renting an apartment in France doesn’t always come equipped with a complete kitchen. Sometimes there’s just a sink. Occasionally, there’s not even a sink. So renters have to create their own “cuisines.” You can take whatever you’ve bought with you to your next rental.

The kitchen in my first apartment was tiny. It had a sink, a cooktop, and little or no storage. The new kitchen has bottom cabinets, a cooktop, and an exhaust fan. I have to purchase Anything else I want in the space and have it installed. Fortunately, IKEA has good designs and affordable prices on kitchen fittings. Now find the time to get it done.

What do you think of this?

living in the south of france

Renewing my Carte de Sejour

Yes, it’s that time of year … again. My appointment at the Prefecture in NImes to renew my carte de sejour was this week. Thank goodness for Renestance! Jennifer is so familiar with the people and the process at the Prefecture that it’s getting to be a breeze. That is if you call pulling together a snapshot of your life and finances to present for your card simple.

This was my fifth year going through the French requirement for my 12-month visa. My compliments to the Nimes Prefecture this go round. They’ve figured out how to move people through the system. Perhaps it’s because of the number of Brits coming through the system due to Brexit.

Market Day in Uzès

What’s a week in Uzès without a visit to the Saturday Market? Just getting there is half the thrill. Yes, I do love living in the south of France.

Hope you had a great week too!

living in the south of france

12 replies »

  1. You want a helping hand for 1 day? I’m Belgian, following your blog snice three years. Have a home in Ales, installed with many IKEA-furniture.. Visiting Uzes every saturday when staying in France.

    • OMG, Yes! I’d really like some advice, too. I’ll send you an email. Thank you! And thanks for following the blog, Claus!

  2. Thanks for responding Deborah – I will indeed let you know when we get there and maybe we could have coffee or a petit vin rose even!!! I wish I was there now to be honest….

    • I’ll look forward to seeing you! Right now we’re having Mistral. Hope it’ll be sunny and bright for you.

      • Hi Deborah – well the weather has to be better than the UK! But the Mistral has been said to drive people crazy…. so be kind to yourself especially after moving home which can be so stressful! I hope we manage to meet when I am in Uzes – arrive on 27th May for one all too short week! So nice to see someone offering to help you too….

        • Thank you for your kind concern. I’ll stay out of the wind! I’ll send you a note with my details so we can try to say “hi.” I’m off to Antibes at the end of that week, but perhaps we’ll have a chance to meet. If we don’t, I know you’ll have fun!

  3. Glad to hear you have a ground floor apartment, much easier for you and what fun shopping for new furniture. Xx

    • This new apartment makes so much sense for me now. It’s really comfortable and convenient. Let me know when you’re back in town!

  4. I have only recently begun to follow your blog – I have been to Uzes a couple of times and am returning for a week’s holiday with my son at the end of May and I have to say my dream has always been to live in the South of France and has now become focussed on Uzes! You never know – maybe one day!!! Thank you for blogging – it’s fascinating! Fiona

    • Thank you so much for writing, Fiona. Uzès is getting to be a real favorite place for expats to land. It’s a very unique place. Best wishes with your decision. May is the perfect time to visit. Let me know when you’re here.

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