Newbies

A place for new members to say a quick hello and introduce themselves.

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ShazzaandPete
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Newbies

Post by ShazzaandPete » Sun 14 May 2017 09:54

Hi there from 2 retired Aussies. Peter and I (Sharon) have been in Céret for 6 months, renovating our apartment. We are keen to meet people here. Are there any clubs or organisations in Céret that you would recommend us to investigate? We don't have a car so cycle, walk or bus. Our interests are varied, including the arts. We are struggling with some elements of bureaucracy, especially with phone calls. An English-speaking IT expert would be really helpful! We don't have tv yet and have been waiting for a landline to be installed for the internet. Cheers..

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Re: Newbies

Post by martyn94 » Sun 14 May 2017 11:03

ShazzaandPete wrote:Hi there from 2 retired Aussies. Peter and I (Sharon) have been in Céret for 6 months, renovating our apartment. We are keen to meet people here. Are there any clubs or organisations in Céret that you would recommend us to investigate? We don't have a car so cycle, walk or bus. Our interests are varied, including the arts. We are struggling with some elements of bureaucracy, especially with phone calls. An English-speaking IT expert would be really helpful! We don't have tv yet and have been waiting for a landline to be installed for the internet. Cheers..
I'm too far from Céret to help, but good luck. I think everyone finds phone calls trying: it's partly because you can't just wave your arms. Or at least you can but it doesn't help. It gets better.

It might help to post more specific queries under the more specific sub-forums: I only rarely look this far up the page.

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ShazzaandPete
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Post by ShazzaandPete » Sun 14 May 2017 15:43

Thanks for that. We'll learn!
We are an Australian couple who moved permanently to France a year ago... still finding our way with bureaucracy and businesses​. We want more community involvement and need French lessons to improve communications. Also need IT help!

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Post by SteveB » Sun 14 May 2017 18:39

Don't know about an English-speaking IT expert, but Orange has an English-speaking helpline, which I have found useful - 09 77 55 72 27.

I bought a house in Céret just over a year ago, and though I'm not a permanent resident, I'm keen to meet people in the area, you if you'd be interested in meeting up, please send me a PM.

Bon courage!

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Post by Daphne » Mon 15 May 2017 13:41

Just had to ask , why would anybody choose Europe over Australia? Our neice and family moved to Brisbane 17 months ago and it's incredible what they have acheived in such a short time. She was working as a solicitor but without much hope of promotion and her husband a teacher also at a dead end in the UK! They are very impressed with the education and health service and general way of life. Maybe the services aren't so good everywhere in Australia, I only know about Sydney and Brisbane. Martyn 94 seems to be quite an expert on Australia ................

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Post by martyn94 » Mon 15 May 2017 16:25

Daphne wrote:Just had to ask , why would anybody choose Europe over Australia? Our neice and family moved to Brisbane 17 months ago and it's incredible what they have acheived in such a short time. She was working as a solicitor but without much hope of promotion and her husband a teacher also at a dead end in the UK! They are very impressed with the education and health service and general way of life. Maybe the services aren't so good everywhere in Australia, I only know about Sydney and Brisbane. Martyn 94 seems to be quite an expert on Australia ................
Not really. My sister is the expert: she's naturalised, but still ended up back here. But I have had the advantage of seeing it from outside.

What follows is a wild generalisation. They live on vast mountains of cheap natural resources which they have sold to China at very good prices for a few decades. They are not called the "lucky country" for nothing. Hence they have been able to combine very good pay for gifted people like your family, decent pay for plain folk, and generally very adequate social support for people who need it.

The downside, over time, is that they are extremely urbanised, centralised, and suburbanised (with one consequence, among others, that they are even more obese than us). They have combined that with a very "extensive" pattern of urban development, which means that only very affluent people live close to the action (especially in Sydney) and everybody else lives 50kms out of town and spends half their life commuting in a car or on mediocre public transport.

That's OK if the aggravation is the price of economic advancement, and you have kids to distract you. But once you are retired, it might seem decreasingly attractive. If you live 5 or 10 kms from your local shopping mall (which is nowhere much to go to in any event) and aren't so confident about living entirely dependent on a car, either now or in 10 or 15 years time, or just no longer think it's a good trade-off, Céret could begin to seem like paradise. Since Australian pensions are generally very adequate, and selling up there would generally set you up here pretty nicely, it could seem a no brainer if you think you can hack the change of culture.

It's not very different from the itinerary that brought many of us here: we have made some money where we had to, and are spending it where we want to.

I have no idea whether that reflects ShazzaandPete's thinking or situation but it certainly has been my thinking. I spent many happy months in Canberra over the years, thanks to friends and family, but you would have to chain me down to live there, genteel and pleasant as it is.

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Kate
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Post by Kate » Mon 15 May 2017 16:50

A very warm welcome to you anyway ShazzaandPete.
Lot's of fun ahead! :lol:

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Re: Newbies

Post by GrahamC » Fri 19 May 2017 19:28

ShazzaandPete wrote:Hi there from 2 retired Aussies. Peter and I (Sharon) have been in Céret for 6 months, renovating our apartment. We are keen to meet people here. Are there any clubs or organisations in Céret that you would recommend us to investigate? We don't have a car so cycle, walk or bus. Our interests are varied, including the arts. We are struggling with some elements of bureaucracy, especially with phone calls. An English-speaking IT expert would be really helpful! We don't have tv yet and have been waiting for a landline to be installed for the internet. Cheers..
Welcome to the PO and, in particular the Vallespir. We're just up the road in Arles if you need company.

If it's not too late can I recommend you go for Orange as your internet provider. They are miles better than SFR in every respect.

To help you out with French paperwork I can throughly recommend Eliane Morley, the French wife of Rob Morley a Ceret based builder.

Eliane speaks English very well, and is supremely competent at getting things done. She'll turn her hand to any problem and is more than happy to do the ringing round of utility companies etc. She's intelligent, personable, trustworthy and generally a good egg. She's certainly been a huge help to us.

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Re: Newbies

Post by Sus » Sun 11 Jun 2017 14:09

ShazzaandPete wrote:Hi there from 2 retired Aussies. Peter and I (Sharon) have been in Céret for 6 months, renovating our apartment. We are keen to meet people here. Are there any clubs or organisations in Céret that you would recommend us to investigate? We don't have a car so cycle, walk or bus. Our interests are varied, including the arts. We are struggling with some elements of bureaucracy, especially with phone calls. An English-speaking IT expert would be really helpful! We don't have tv yet and have been waiting for a landline to be installed for the internet. Cheers..
If you are invested in hiking, there is a very good hiking club (La Randonnée Céretane), they often car share to get to the beginning of a hike. Also worth checking out the Euro bus, I also use it when I have a straight forward journeys

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