Friday, November 12, 2010

settling in

We've been in our new place for over two weeks now and we're settling in quite nicely. Most of the boxes are unpacked, the kitchen is workable, the lighting is better and we're enjoying our new surroundings. I can't say there is much I will miss about our old place, but here's a top 3 list just to pay homage to it.

Top 3 things I will miss about our apartment in La Pouëze:
1. the light
We were on the top floor of a three level building and we had windows and skylights facing east and west, so we had morning and evening sun. We could see the horizon and watch amazing sunrises and sunsets. We now live on the ground floor, with tallish buildings blocking the light on one side and tall trees blocking the light on the other side. In the afternoon we get a bit of light reflection off one of the buildings, but we have no view of any horizons, mostly just walls and trees. At least there are trees.

2. the warmth
We had linoleum floors and water radiators that were powered by gas. The heat was included in the rent, and with the place being so small it stayed nice and toasty all winter long. We now live in a place with cold ceramic tile on the floor everywhere (this confirms my dislike of tile floors!) and we have electric heaters that we have to pay for ourselves, so we're scared to turn up the heat too much! Electricity is prohibitively expensive here! I've put down a bunch of area rugs and we've taken to wearing wool socks (I'm on the lookout for wool slippers) and sweaters to keep ourselves warm.

3. the woods
We lived in an ugly village, but there was a little castle with a little forest behind it. That's where I used to go running and I loved seeing the changes in the trees and plants, and listening to the birds as I ran. We have exchanged the woods for the river and we can go for lovely walks along the walking trails that wind through the local vineyards and connect the villages along the Loire. I love the scenery here and I'm glad to be so close to the river, but I will miss the woods where I used to run.

Other than those few things, we both much prefer the village of Savennières and our new place. So much more space and a real office! There's even a real closet where we can hang our clothes (unusual in France) and a bathtub. Jean-Marc's missing the shower stall from La Pouëze, but I'm happy with the option to take showers or baths!


  1. That would be easier if we had a camera! I've been trying to take some with my macbook but it hasn't been working out so well. I'll see what I can do!

  2. Hey Marianne and Jean-Marc how is it going in france. Nice to see you are settling in your new apartment, how is the cat taking his new kingdom? Any update on the pictures? Here in Holland we have snow and temperatures of -10 degrees atm so our cat in snuggling against the heater. We have bought 3 friends for azalia but it turned out a hate / love relationship (since they are fish). Any plans on coming to Holland again? We hope to see you soon.

    Wouter and Fiona

    Ps. Willem has started his own blog too, it’s going to be a about his adventures on his boat the url is

  3. Hey Wouter and Fiona!

    Great to hear from you! Yes, we are creating a little home, but we haven't got any pictures yet. I will post them here when we do get around to taking some (might wait for a sunny day because otherwise it's kind of dark...). Domino is loving it, too, and he has doubled in size since we were in Holland! Are Azalia's new friends still alive? We only have a little bit of snow falling and nothing sticking... unlike most of Western Europe.

    No plans for Holland yet, but we'd love to come and visit again. I still dream about how great your apartment in Leiden is!