Thursday, August 5th

The infirmiere arrived early this morning….about 7:20.  She concurred that the incision is healing well and took another blood sample.  Her associate will see me next week, so we offered to pay her today.  The cost of two home visits?  46 euros. 

As the morning sun rose, we noticed another visitor….a small frog on the window grate.  This is a curious happenstance.  How did a little frog get to the top of the grate….12 feet above the ground?  My friend, Google, is required for this one….

It appears our little visitor is a Stripeless Tree Frog….with adhesive pads on the ends of its digits that allow it to climb trees, vines and old cottages.  They live along the Mediterranean near rivers, streams and canals.  Their main predators are birds….but I’ll bet this one has never been face to face with a cat.  

Since we’re not having much luck receiving Felix’s fountain from Chronopost , we decided to drive into Carcassonne to pick it up ourselves.  We printed the directions from Mapquest….always a dodgy proposition.  Craig decided to save time by driving on the péage (toll road)….although there’s more traffic, the scenery is just as beautiful as on the country roads.  As we approached our destination, there on the right, loomed “la Cité”….the walled fortress that comprised the original town.  It’s Disney-perfect and absolutely takes my breath away every time I see it. 

Mapquest got us to Carcassonne, but then failed us miserably.  We tried each of the roads leading from the the first roundabout, but none of them matched the directions we were working with.  Craig was forced to do the unthinkable….ask for directions!  He looked for manly stores….surely they would know where we needed to go.  First up, a paint store….no luck;  then a tire store…again, no luck.  As we drove around and around, I spied a children’s toy store.  What the heck, I’ve been wanting to find something for our new grandson, so we stopped in.  Not only did we find a nifty toy for River, we got directions to Chronopost!  (What can be learned from this?)

With new directions in hand, we had no problem finding our destination.  Well, ok, we made one wrong turn, and found it despite ourselves.  Craig went in only to find that our handmade map had finally made it to them and our package was out for delivery!   The driver will be told to leave the package at La Poste for us to pickup at our leisure….so the trip wasn’t in vain.

This evening’s therapy session was with Sébastien who compared French and English words with me.  A “scar” is a “cicatrice”…..guess if you have to have one, it might as well have a lovely sound to it.  

We stopped at the boulangerie for a bagette and the boucherie for homemade sausage.  With the fixings for a delicious dinner, we ambled on home.

Our visitor was still on his perch….directly above Felix’s tower….sleeping the day away.  As dusk turned to dark, our friend woke to find his dinner….and to come face to face with our “chat noir.”  I don’t know who was more frightened….they both jumped….the little frog to the safety of the vines outside the window and Felix straight to the top of the screen!  Felix was dumbfounded….he didn’t know whether to run from or attack the intruder.  He finally settled on pure inquisitiveness and waited patiently for the frog to return.

Bonne nuit.


About Languedoc Lady

I'm a newly retired woman from California getting ready to spend a year (or more) with my husband living the good life in Languedoc in the southwest of France.
This entry was posted in Canal du Midi, France, Retirement, Travel. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Thursday, August 5th

  1. Sharmyn says:

    It continues to be a delight to be a part of your adventure!

  2. Joyce S. says:

    Laurel asked where your cottage was. Are you staying there while they work on the boat? It sounds wonderful!

  3. Mani says:

    Healthcare is always cheaper anywhere in the world except USA. Some European country have “FREE” healthcare from cradle to coffin or crematorium. This of course, is not free but, is paid by all as taxes. Some countries, depending on your income, it can be 60%. The more you earn the more you pay. Unlike USA. The millionaires pays less and the poor soul, who works two jobs to put bread and butter on his table pays more. I know, I have CPA and H&R Block tax experts freinds. I digress.
    How is the cost of living compared to California? How easily can someone buy a house or Condo? What is the price of Petrol? How cheap is the transportation? Is there good public transit? You paid the infirmiere 46 Euros. Per visit she charges 23 euros and it converts t0 approx 32 dollars US and Canadian. This is really cheap. A physiotherapy visit here cost $75 + $45 first visit and $45 for subsequent visits. I don’t know about US. How does she manage to live in this income?
    I am glad your are somewhat mobile. Take care.

    • Taxes and other fees here are high (19.6% tax on all goods; toll roads, etc.), but the country is in good repair and, as you said, health care is covered, so the money seems to be spent wisely.

      Where we are, in SW France, costs are very reasonable. If not, we wouldn’t have been able to start this adventure. House rentals can be found for 300-500 euros/month. Television, internet and telephone (all calls-local, long distance & international) is 30 euros/month. We’ve heard electricity is high. We have a monthly subscription rate of 35 euros (it varies depending on the plan you choose) – actual kW are additional….but utilities were expensive in California, too. Overall, groceries are cheaper here….2 chicken breasts-2.50 euros; 1/2 lb coffee-2.00 euros; 1 liter milk-1 euro; bagette-95 cents. Dining out is expensive, but the French seem to find a way it always fit it in the budget. Gasoline is about the same as in Calif., but our rental is a diesel and gets excellent mileage, so we haven’t spent much on gas.

      One of our friends is married and has one child. He works 3-4 days a week, his wife doesn’t work and they own their own home so the overall cost of living must be low enough to allow for lower earnings. And you can’t beat the quality of life…’s a country that’s very sensual ….seeing (art in some form everywhere you look), hearing (free concerts) and, of course, eating.

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