We woke to a beautiful blue sky…..the first one we’ve seen in weeks…..but we couldn’t enjoy it to it’s fullest. We had to get on with the task at hand….emptying the cottage of the things we’d brought and the things we’d bought.
We’re confident that everything we brought over here will be going home with us. The rub arises with the things that we’ve bought to make life in the cottage a little more comfortable. Some of it was bought with the understanding that it would serve us well on the boat, so that’ll be the new home for dishes, bowls and assorted kitchen utensils. But what to do with the items geared for life on land…..chairs, heater, air purifier, air mattress? We staged a little photography shoot in the front room and loaded the resulting pictures on an Expat website…..hopefully they’ll find new homes soon.
With that done, we sat down, opened a packet we’d just received from my former employer and began the arduous task of poring over our health insurance options for next year…..HMO, PPO, medical, dental, vision…..various choices ranging from $1,200 – $2,100 a month!!! We’re paying less than $4,000 a year for insurance over here!!!!
I don’t want to get into a philosophical diatribe, but something’s very wrong here.
France’s government-run health care system works just fine……thanks to my broken leg, I can say that from personal experience. From the emergency room to the surgery to the follow-up care and physical therapy, their system was easy to navigate, flawless and inexpensive…..even for someone who didn’t speak the language.
People over here can’t understand why Americans are so adverse to the concept of government-run health care. We tell them that too many Americans fear the unknown and figure “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” What these people just don’t get is that it is broke…..very, very broke.
After this depressing chore, it was definitely time for a drink (it’s good for the heart, right?), so we finished off the last of the Lillet….chilled, with a twist of orange.
In a better frame of mind, I tackled dinner…..making good progress on emptying the larder using Gino D’Acampo’s recipe for Chicken and Pea Risotto (substituting Camargue red rice for the arborio rice).
For dessert, we had PARKIN, a British ginger-oat cake (and a great way to finish off our tin of Lyle’s Golden Syrup).
Neither dish was much to look at, but both were delicious….especially so with our last bottle of Le Téméraire…..a toothsome blend of whites by one of our favorite local wineries, Domaine de la Provenquiere.
“Wine is the healthiest and most health-giving of drinks” ~ Louis Pasteur