Saturday, May 3, 2014

Living in Two Places

Corsier Port on Lac Leman, Switzerland
We're fortunate to live in two wonderful places: the south of France and Switzerland. Well, to put it more accurately, Donna-Lane lives in two places, and she allows me to live with her in both. Or even more accurately, her housemate J allows me extended visits in Geneva.

I love both places, though Argeles-sur-mer is 'home' and Geneva is a marvelous change of pace that I get to visit regularly. D-L comes up to Geneva more often than I do, for example to do her Swiss taxes in February and in March when she and J went on a long-planned trip to Malta.

One challenge in being in Geneva for a month or so is what to bring with us. I tend to need more clothes than D-L, in part because I'm attending the EBACE business aviation conference for four days so I need to bring my 'corporate' duds. I also bring far more papers for projects I'm working on; D-L has mastered the art of putting most everything on her computer (with backups too).

This trip we drove, in part so I could bring my golf clubs. Last time in Geneva I had spotted a little 9-hole course just over the border in France. Hoping the weather will cooperate.

Having the car will also enable us to bring some copies of D-L's novel down to Argeles -- too heavy to bring very many on the train.

And we can do some research / sightseeing that is not on the train route. On the way up, the Abbey at Fontfroide. On the way back, perhaps Avignon.

When you finally arrive, of course, it takes a good half-day to get things put away, and get acclimated to working in the alternate surroundings. Another big difference is grocery shopping. In Argeles, we can walk down the street to an abundance of local butchers, bakers, and green grocers; in Geneva, it's a 10-minute ride or bus trip to the nearest supermarket. No big deal - just have to plan accordingly. (However, Geneva does have a couple of 'American' stores where we can get 'essentials' such as cheddar popcorn that are not available in French or Swiss stores.)

Now that we're settled in and bought groceries and chocolate sufficient to last a couple days, looking forward to seeing our friends in Switzerland - Geneva Writers Group, the bizav conference and other professional colleagues who live here, and and and ... 

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