Why is it so hard to find a job in France?

I think there is a certain element of truth in what John is saying here in that computers speak their own languages and your husband speaks those languages. In my industry knowledge of French is almost as important as knowledge of construction as we are facing both the client and the contractor.
Don’t give up though ps if he ever gets interviews up in Paris and needs a place to stay over, get him to drop me a line. Takes some of the sting out of getting a hotel etc and I’d be happy to help out.

Sharon, I presume your husband has his CV up on APEC and Monster. What area of networking are his skills in? Has he tried IBM, Cisco or HP? In my experience sought after tech skills don't have a language barrier. The important thing is for your skills to be scarce and in demand. Thirty years ago I worked here as a Systems Programmer with (initially) no French at all. It wasn't a issue because in those days SPs were a rare (geeky) breed.

Better off not getting a job with a company that treats people like that Sharon.

Joyce would be Irish of course. Not to split hairs.

And that's one of the reasons I love it Glen. France is France. We'll see how the French economy goes, I'm not as pessimistic as you.

you kidding??? of course its still there...but has been made over...modern...fabulous..got a separate furniture bit across the carpark on the canal...I truly love Newbury....we have a flat there and cant wait to move back permanently!

Camp Hobson!! Is it still there??

There are not many secrets to learn a language I think and complete immersion is definetly the key. When I was in Madrid, I was living with a spanish lady who was renting me a room, working with spanish people, always listen the TV, radio, movies in spanish. The only thing I was allowing myself to do was reading in french. But apart from that and if I wasn't calling my family on the phone, I was always speaking in spanish and in three months, I was almost fluent. What helps a lot is to love learning languages but even for the french personns who were with me, even for those who didn't like especially learning languages, after three months of this regime, their level had increased a lot. And none of us had a spanish boyfriend or girlfriend!!!

For the english, it was the same, when we lived in england with my husband for a year, all around me was english. It gets so tiring after a while, your brain is completly full and quickly, you get confused. But then, like everything, you get used to it and again it is crazy how quickly you pick up things when you don't have the choice. If I didn't have any notions of english, I don't thing my husband and I would have been able to get married, his french was really bad and it wouldn't have been enough to get to know each other. When he wanted to learn french on his own, I suggested exactly what I read earlier, watch movies in french, listen to french songs and try to translate the lyrics. Even if you don't like what you see of hear, the point is to learn with something not too schoolish....

For our daughter, it is a bit different. She will be 3 in october and I always speak to her in french and Chris always in english. But we live in france and everything else is in french. So of course, her first reflexe is to speak in french eventhough she understands everything english her dad says. I think she needs a bit more time, she is still young.

I can't deny that Brian, but linguistically it's the thing to do ;-)

We'll be armed with a DVD player once we've moved and settled and have promissed the kids, and ourselves a "real" TV so that I can see the rugby score when watching - it's just too small on our old tely! and we'll sort out a dvd player too - use the various laptops at the moment! Anything would be very welcome ;-)

Trouble is with Andrew's idea is that the news will tell you what is happening in France and nowhere else, most of their soaps are too dire to bother, etc and I find myself nodding off when I try!

Hi Suzanne. Like Lisa, I think your English is excellent and can only hope that one day, I will have that level of fluency in French. We are here (Aude, 11) for just over a year, and still loving our life here. Our French neighbours are great and really patient as we stumble along, searching for that elusive verb or tense! The boulangerie keeps our order every morning (a lovely little touch that we never asked for), and people drop by from time to time to make sure we know about events, such as the recent Fete des Voisins. We get teased when it rains, being "accused" of bringing over the Irish weather. With a couple of exceptions, the ex-pats living are fairly aloof and don't engage with us. Don't know why. Their loss! :-)

Hayley, have French TV on all the time, it'll drive you mad after a while but does help, it's easier than the radio as you have images to help ;-

When I had my three weeks in hospital earlier this year and the 10 days second time in, on both occasions I was so happy I could immerse myself because that experience increased my vocabulary. Whilst I was in the cardiac department to see if I had a heart problem, because I was mobile I was used to help with English only speaking patients twice and had only just learned about the bits of body and so on myself but could help explain at least. Despite what cocksure people say sometimes, not all doctors do speak English and in Bergerac there are a lot of non-French origin whose French is not perfect, let alone know English.

We could do the same. Got quite a few vids but only use DVDs, books seriously need sorting and with ours 9 and 11 they are not that much older and the things not outmoded generally.

Alicia is 5, Robin is 3, early days!

I'm planning a mass clear out of books and vids this summer. Once I brave Max's room I'll let you both know what we have in case it is suitable for the kids in question. If you let me know how old they are too, I'm happy to make suggestions. You get quite out of the loop here and I'm really lucky in that I have wonderful aunts who have grandchildren of similar ages in the UK and send stuff. For instance, Max loved the Alex Ryder series from 8 onwards, which I'd never heard off as they are new and not a classic. And my parents do great stuff trawling the charity shops. Something I do miss here for a supply of cheap books!

Actually you are very close to a great solution Catharine. My children will not watch French children's TV because the quality and range of things on offer is noting like what we have on Freeview channels. The younger will only read some things in French but try to persuade her to pick up Harry Potter in French and the protests are legion. She has seen the films in both languages and knows just how dubbed translations do not work in many cases.

Thanks for that Catharine, I try to insist on cartoons in English on the internet when they watch them, they've already had to suffer Ivor the engine and noddy (even when it's in English they insist on calling him ouioui!) but all the cassettes etc are from friends and family and so are all in French. I'll look into the UK TV option once we've moved this summer - kids BBC/ITV is what they'd like. Will search out some books too for when they get a bit older ;-)

@ Andrew - get English TV - and only allow them to watch TV in English. We did it in reverse and it worked a treat. I'd also buy masses of books when you go back to the UK. Kids books are generally much better in the UK and once your kids start to really enjoy reading, you'll almost certainly find that they will choose to read in English rather than French. Both TV and books will really help with comprehension and you'll get there with the speaking bit!