So, as you may know, Andre and I have a five year master plan to move to France. We're now a year into the plan, so I thought it was time to share an update.
Le Five Year Master Plan has six elements:
- Finance (suitable savings will be required – we are not going to be like the families on TV who head off into the sun casually expecting to make a living from running a little B&B, despite having no experience whatsoever in the hospitality industry)
- Virtual Research (internet research about French education, health, tax, culture, property, house prices, ex-pat life and so on)
- Local Research (holidays to our favourite areas, especially off-season in months like November and February)
- Language (me = improve, Andre = learn)
- Career (continue developing our current careers where all we need to do our jobs are laptops and an internet connection)
- French-dog practice (French dogs are super-well behaved. Our dogs are not well-behaved).
Of all these elements, probably the French-dog practice is the most important, no? Can you imagine moving all the way to France only for your two chiens to embarrass you shamefully with their barking, panting, lead-tugging, cat-chasing, leg-lifting antics every time you try and sit down for a civilised alfresco espresso? Quelle horreur!
Yeah, you're right, it's probably the finance. Moving to France without suitable savings is not really an awesome plan. I've posted before about our approach to saving our pennies - for me, it's not about scrimping on absolutely everything, but on being sensible about the things that you want, and the things that you need.
For example - I really wanted one of these:
But brand new they are laughably expensive, so I found one on Autotrader for less than a third of the price. I called up the dude who was selling it on behalf of his Mum, test drove it, bought it. Simples.
Andre and I really wanted to spend a week in Tuscany for our wedding anniversary last year:
But we decided to chill at home in our lovely back garden with our two hounds instead:
I've always wanted a Barcelona chair:
But with a couple of eager Jack Russell jaws at the perfect level to gnaw on that lovely butter-soft ivory leather, it's probably not that practical an option.
Um, yeah. So not spending substantially more than our monthly mortgage payment on a vase. This one by Virginia Graham did very nicely instead:
I really wanted these Christian Louboutin Ernestas:
So I totally bought them :-)
What the heck. You can't be thrifty all the time, right?
Updates on local research and French-dog practice coming up soon!