Wednesday, 24 February 2016

The Hendaye Diaries: Life in the fast lane part 2

It’s been quite a week – I’ve had a friend from Entre-Deux-Mers stay all week.  We talked about permaculture, biodynamics, Hemmingway and loads of other things.  I learned loads of new cookery and gardening tips. She’s a good influence on my life.   She subtly ensures that I go for a long walk on the beach every day, keeps me away (or more distant) from the bottle and through watching/listening to her I am learning a great deal about the ‘touchstones’ for communicating effectively with the locals.  

I’ve lost track of the enormously beautiful experiences I have had this week. 
  • Eating fresh clementines from tree in ‘my’ garden.
  • Standing on the edge of the jetty that is the most south-westerly point in mainland France and watching the surfer boys and girls do their acrobatics from an oceanic view point,
  • Singing Basque songs (mostly -I was told about ‘love gone bad’ - in an old coach house, 25 metres from the border crossing.
  • Visiting a cidirie close to San Sebastian, where they tap the cider straight out of 8000 litre barrels (and do a mean steak, big enough for four to people to share)
  • Picnicking on the cliffs of St Jean de Luz and seeing the waves resemble dolphins - while aware of snow-capped mountains behind our backs. 
  • And much more.
But it’s also been a productive week. I think I have found the flat that I want to be  chez moi for the coming years, and have made considerable progress towards getting  a business structure established and opening a French bank account. As anyone who has been, or is, an ex-pat these are incredibly time consuming and frustrating exercises.  And I have work coming out of my ears,  editing projects on the fuure of agriculture in the EU, seed dissemination in Africa, coffee supply chains in Ethiopia and berry supply chains in Latvia and Serbia.  The wheels kind of fell off of my truck six weeks or so ago – when a flat I  wanted fell through and the complexities of registering a business here seemed insurmountable .  I have only just managed to put them back on :-)   The only down side to all this is that I haven’t touched my book in the past week L


Isarajka said...

Wow, nice, Nick! Like your post! Looks like some advancement is taking place! It's all going into the right direction, isnt it??? Also, lovely those cliffs and that cider and that "love gone bad" songs... Speak soon! Isabella

Kawo said...

It's been a real pleasure taking part in putting your wheels back on.... I'm sure you'll drive that truck all the way to your dreams and goals.