Thursday, 27 December 2012

Christmas in Montfalcon

Tuesday 25 December

I don't know how Christmas is generally celebrated in France, but I trust it is done mostly with close family members.  I've also been told that Christmas Eve is more important to the French than Christmas Day, and certainly Boxing Day is a lot quieter.  Not a Big Bargain Sales day like it is in the UK and in Australia.

So, we start the day with a Christmassy type of breakfast and there are even a few people (like the day before) who contact us via Skype.  Great, it is always good to hear from family and friends, although it's friends in our case...  That's not to say we haven't heard from family, because Kevin manages to skype us later, when it is night time in Australia.  The whole family (the two boys with their respective families) have gone camping, but unfortunately it's raining cats and dogs in the middle of the night.  We could hear the rain and thought at first we heard a waterfall.  No fun in a tent, so let's keep the fingers crossed the weather will improve.

As the day wears on I play a few games of wordfeud with those people that aren't too tied up yet and later Frank and I get the games out and a cheese platter and settle down to play games for the rest of the afternoon.

Dinner isn't a big affair after the cheese and what goes with it.  Just a special soup and dessert and that'll do use nicely.  For the first time we find something half decent to watch on TV, so we watch till it's bed time and that was Christmas Day in Montfalcon.

Wednesday 26 December

As I haven't slept very well during the night I get up a bit later then usual and get dressed quickly, because the baker is expected as usual today.  The rest of the day goes by quietly, with an afternoon walk to the village Montfalcon and back.  We are not taking the car for two reasons: we are a bit low on fuel (forgot to top up before Christmas) and the local automated thingie at the garage doesn't accept our credit card.

Secondly we are not sure about the brakes.  We're still having a problem with the warning lights coming on and the beep sounding, so we want to be careful.  Unfortunately we received a very stroppy e-mail back from Rene, telling us that we had made 'unreasonable' use of his car. He had made a note of the mileage and our reading was a lot higher than he had apparently expected.  Well, that didn't go down well with us either, I can tell you.  We have reluctantly accepted his wish to not go beyond 350 km from his house, which made our trip to Paris unnecessarily expensive, but if he expects us to stay home and only go out for the weekly shopping then he shouldn't exchange houses ánd cars, in particular since he lives on a farm in a country, far removed from most conveniences.  We've accepted all of that, but..... 'unreasonable' use of his car? I don't think so.  And, the furthest we have been away was a mere 100 kms!

Strange enough I had an uneasy feeling when we said 'yes' to this house exchange request, and it seems not without reason after all.  Anyway, that e-mail didn't do much for our good humour for an hour or so, but we managed to shake it off and we'll just see what happens next.


  1. Oei, dat klinkt niet erg leuk hoe die René reageert! Ik vind het wel absurd hoor, je kan toch niet verwachten dat mensen die aan huizenruil doen alleen maar in huis willen bijven. Je komt toch juist naar een ander land om ook iets van dat land te zien!
    Jammer dat het zo gaat!

  2. Hallo Marion,

    Ik volg je blog, maar dan via mijn reader.
    Jullie hebben een beetje dezelfde interesses als wij, reizen, geocachen én huizenruil.
    Ik ben echt stomverbaasd over deze voorwaarde, zeker als je met mensen van de andere kant van de wereld ruilt.
    We hebben vaak ons huis geruild én de auto. Canadezen hebben met onze wagen Berlijn, Parijs en weet ik wat nog niet meer bezocht en wij hebben de hele Rocky Mountains doorgereden met hun auto.
    ik denk dat het mailtje meer over Rene zegt dan de doorsnee huizenruiler.
    Ik vind het echt heel sneu voor jullie en die Rene zou er beter aan doen gewoon thuis te blijven.
    En dat van dat uneasy feeling herken ik ook, soms heb je er mensen bij... dan kun je maar beter zeggen van we blijven thuis.
    Ik hoop dat jullie ondanks alles toch nog fijne dagen zullen hebben.

    Groetjes van Jolande

  3. Door de feestdagen en onze overige bezigheden weinig tijd gehad om te reageren, maar bedankt jullie beiden voor je reaktie. Vooral fijn om van een mede-huizenruilster te horen dat het toch niet zo absurd is wat wij doen. ;-) Idd Margriet, als we op een stoel wilden blijven zitten hadden we dat beter thuis kunnen doen. En Jolande, je hebt gelijk, bij de volgende uneasy feeling haken we af en zoeken we wel iets anders. Zonde om een ervaring die zo plezierig kan zijn te laten vergallen.


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