Great discussion. I’m 85 years old and live in the USA, but that dream of moving to France is still in my head. Thanks for reviving it.
To add my two cents, I want to suggest two writers who are rewarding to read, even if they do not give you up to the minute advice on how to get from the UK to France without headaches. The magnet of France is powered by its culture – and a promise of something that it would take a better writer than I am to define.
Pulitzer-prize winning poet W.S. Merwin traces the origins of the troubadours in 12th century Provance as he relates his own experience as a frequent visitor to southern France in this striking memoir, “The Mays of Ventadorn,” (National Geographic Directions),
2002. One of the century’s great American poets, turns his lyrical eye to the legacy of the Troubadours of southern France. It is a very personal exploration, as he shares with the reader his love of the French countryside and of the old farmhouse that became his home for decades.
British writer David Goulson describes his book, A Buzz In The Meadow: “ Twelve years ago, I bought this little farm in the middle of nowhere in rural France. It’s in a region called the Charente which is roughly halfway down France, about 70 miles from the west coast. It was a rundown old house, not habitable by any normal standards, with a 33-acre field of what had been arable wheat, so pretty boring country biologically. Ever since, I’ve been turning it into a wildflower meadow, which isn’t easy. It wouldn’t rival the finest flowery grasslands in the world, but it’s been rewarding to watch it slowly change."