When I lived in a shared house in Chorlton for a year before moving to France, we had a cleaner. Before that I lived with my parents for a couple of years without domestic responsibilities. The poor boyfriend hadn’t really spent enough time with me to realise how un-housetrained I was before I rocked up suitcase in hand to move in. I hadn’t cooked anything in years – I’d spent the past year out on the town most nights, ordering takeaway or stuffing myself with Philadelphia crackers, because they don’t go off in between times. In rural France there are no takeaways. Before the summer starts there are only about two restaurants open in the village and we’d been through both menus. The boyfriend had cooked dinner a couple of times and I knew it was my turn. “So how would you go about frying an egg?” I asked casually. Continue reading “Introducing Domesti-Katie”
You have to keep your wits about you in France as it’s easy to get suckered into drinking wine and forgetting you have work to do. It was common in the days of Fleet Street for everyone to get a bit plastered at lunchtime, though now any sort of day drinking is much frowned upon in England except when it’s someone’s last day or birthday or around Christmas or a Friday. In France that proud tradition is not dead, particularly among the manual workers who drive heavy machinery. Continue reading “Drinking In France: Wine Not?”
One morning in March I shocked many – including myself – when I suddenly upped and moved to a country where I don’t speak the language, with a man I’d been going out with for five months and no job except some vague ideas about freelance writing.
Ten days earlier I had been preparing to fly back to Manchester from my boyfriend’s house in rural France after eating oysters by the sea, which must have got me a bit excited because I suggested that next time I visit I might not leave. Not sure if the other was joking, both of us nonchalantly shrugged in a very Gallic fashion and said “pour qua pas?” (well, I said “why not?” as I can’t speak French). The following morning I resigned from my job as a BBC journalist before either of us could change our minds.