The Pulbrooks French Adventure 2011-12 travel blog

Jackson in Chamrousse



The week started with a quiet Sunday at home. It's hard to see any action anywhere on Sunday as it's a very much a family day. We went for a bike ride to have a look around which was lovely.

We did learn that you don't mow the lawn on Sundays. Lew started up the mower about 4pm and was politely informed by our neighbour that it is not permitted and he may be fined if reported. We have since been given the times and days that we are allowed to mow the grass. No breaking the rules !

Monday we went back to the sports store Decathlon for some more "toys". The boys had fun riding the rip sticks and scooters in the aisles - all kids love Decathlon !

Tuesday we were invited to morning coffee at a ladies house who is part of an association called AVF. This group welcomes newcomers to France and helps you settle in, helps with explaining any cultural issues and has quite a strong social group with a lot of activities on offer. We met a lot of people, all French speakers but many also spoke English as they have been expats all over the world. Poor Jackson came down with a migraine so we didn't stay as long as we had hoped but after some medicine and a rest he was feeling much better.

Wednesday we went for a drive to a beautiful nearby ski resort named Chamrousse in the Belledone mountains. This is the range that we plan to ski in over winter, but probably at another resort called les Sept Laux. We stopped and had a really nice walk with incredible views over Grenoble. It was a bit hazy so we didn't get many photos.

Thursday was a big day shopping for school supplies – we hadn't met up with anyone to translate our list and the dictionary wasn't spot on. We were a bit confused by "a green slate with felt and chiffon" which turned out to be a small whiteboard, felt tip pen and eraser. A lovely English speaking man at Carrfour walked with us, our list and the trolley and helped us get everything we need. It made it so much easier.

Friday we took another drive into the Alps, this time in the Chartreuse Range to a village called Sappy – we did a small bush walk and came back to the home of one of the mums from school, Nathalie, for afternoon tea. There were 2 other Mums there - Aline and Muriel - with their boys who are in the same class as Jackson. The boys met some of their future class mates and really enjoyed the contact with other children. None of the other children spoke English but who needs language when there is a pool and games ? It was lovely. Got home about 8pm. We met a really lovely lady who came late called Delphine who has been an expat herself and speaks excellent English. Delphine offered to meet us at the local soccer club next Wednesday afternoon to register Alex and for him to have his first training session of the season.

She also told us about an American family who arrived the same time we did, who have 2 children a similar age and speak no French. We arranged to meet up with her (and the American family) on Saturday.

Each Saturday there is a local food market in the square. Great fresh meat,cheese, olives, seafood and vegetables. We met Delphine and our new friends Doug, Genay, Harrison (10) and Victoria (9) and the kids enjoyed playing in a nearby park while we all enjoyed a coffee. Their children will be going to an American school. Their family is from Boston and working in the science of artifical orthopedic implants and robot technology. Hope we don't need any of their equipment over the ski season ??

Another quiet Sunday morning getting prepared for 1st day of the French school year tomorrow. In the afternoon we were invited to the home of an English speaking family for afternoon tea. Frances is originally from England but has lived in France for 20 years or more and Francoise her husband is French. They have a son the same age as Jackson and a 4 year old daughter. It was lovely and Frances has been so helpful in offering to assist with any translations we may need. She has also kindly offered to be our emergency contact for the school in case the kids are sick or need us at short notice.

The boys are feeling excited and scared about school tomorrow. Lew & I are too just quietly ! Fingers crossed it all goes well.

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