An english girl who after six months in the french mountains, has left for Italia, the beautiful country. My thoughts on leaving life as I know it and beyond! Join me as I embark on a life with lots of adventure and a lack of heels!!!!

Friday, 26 November 2010

Down with the kids??

  Hello again, well we have now been here just over a week and things are looking good. We are due to start working mid December, just Saturdays cleaning apartments (absolutely no nannying!!) until things get busier after Christmas when I will probably be waitressing a couple of evenings a week in a hotel as well and Mr will be handy manning! And then tomorrow (Saturday) the ski slopes open. So plenty of time out to ski before we start work, well whilst we are working too, we are not here to work hard!!!

  It has snowed alot here this week, from Monday morning to Wednesday night then again last night. It has started to get sooo cold too, -10 yesterday and god knows what today, it is freezing, -23 tonight, though so this afternoon it is somewhere between -10 and -23!!!! Chilly!!!!

Thursday afternoon.

  So I thought I would give you a little shoe update seen as we have’nt really done much apart from eat and drink and pop out for walks to the couple of cafe’s open!!

  Essential news I know!! Many of you may be aware by now that sensible footwear is not, how shall I put it? My forte. As mentioned in another post my buying of proper snow boots is unheard of, and it has been 10 years of skiing holidays spent sliding and skidding around resorts all over the world.

  When planning to spend 6 months here in Val d’isere footwear was obviously a serious consideration, (never mind work, accommodation, etc, etc!!). Now was the time to be a bit more sensible, after all 6 months is a bit more serious than a week or two.

  Now I won’t go into all the boot purchasing again but I will share with you what I always truly believed. I will share with you the fact that I have indeed bought many pairs of boots, mmmm... 9 pairs to be precise. Two of which are flat.

  Now, I have heard that there is snow falling in the UK so listen up I have some advice from the snowy climes here in the alps! Heels, simple as that. Out of the 9 pairs that I have bought with me (now you know why we bought a bigger car, he he!) I have worn 4 in the last week , my flat biker boots are horrendous, sliding all over the show and my Ugg’s, although snug and warm, are as slippery as my ski’s!! On the other hand my knee high’s with a block heel are doing well, less skidding than both of the flats and more snow proof as they reach the knees!! And the best ones so far are my heeled hiking boots!!! Nice chunky sole, 3.5” chunky heel. You see the thing with heels is that there is something to stick in the ground first before the rest of your foot makes contact so you are already secure on the slippery surface, add a little grip on the front and voila the perfect snow shoe!!!

  I even walked up the foot of the (base) mountain a good few feet yesterday in my knee high’s and I swear if I had been wearing my flats I would’nt have got up the slope as I would not have had the heel sticking in the snow first, I would have been flat on face (not for the first time I know!!!).

See, I am not lying!!

  Now ice is a little trickier but I am starting to realise the more surface touching the ice the more likely it is that you will slip, so stick to rule of heels, heels, heels!!! Do you think wearing my Louboutins will be testing my theory a step too far??????

  The other seasonaires (ugh, so young and full of self importance, you know the type!!) have been arriving in force over the last couple of days and there seems to be a common denominator in their choice of footwear, I dunno if they were handing them out with every job placement or what, but it seems that the regulation footwear for these 18-22 year olds is the Nike Hi-top, in black and turquoise. I swear I have seen soo many of them wearing them. And even when they are all out together in packs, all looking the same, imagine that!!!(No I do not think myself above them, well......). These young kids, I dunno!!! I have realised, with relief I may, add that I am most certainly not ‘down with the kids’.
Nike Dunk Hi Premium 08

Nike Dunk High 08
Hmmmm..... not really me eh?????

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Some photos!!

All our belongings, dunno how we fitted it all in!!

Our apartment.

Celebration dinner!

The views from our balcony on sunday.

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Le cheeseburger.

                             That's just what it' been like here today, I wore my camel coat too!!

                                                        I just love these old Vogue covers.

   Firstly I shall apologise for all the crap French I keep adding in, sorry, I’ll get bored soon!

   Well we have been here 5 days altogether now (another copy and paste version I am afraid) and we are really quite settled in and it now feels like a long time since we were at home, well I say home, this is home for now, so I suppose to say England would be more correct.

   It has been snowing most of the day today and as I sit here at the dining table with a cup of hot chocolate it is a bit like being in and looking out of a snow globe! Lovely, just what we need, it has not snowed since Thursday and the mountains desperately need more snow to open properly at the weekend.

   It is a little weird at the moment, as I mentioned previously in my last post, there is very little open so there is not a lot to do during the day, not even the(the 3 that are actually open anyway) bars open until 6pm! There are 3 cafes open though, one is a gorgeous patisserie and bakery selling the most amazing cakes and baked goods, just lovely, all alpine wood inside and metal bistro tables and chairs (K you would love!!), then there is a ‘salon de the’ which is very snug but at £4.50 for a cup of tea it is really a bit too pricey, the only one which has wi-fi, is the Quicksilver cafe which is in the actual Quicksilver/Roxy shop and is a cool diner style affair serving up deliciously bad, unhealthy food, that coupled with the wi-fi makes it packed all the time. Which leads me to a rather large confession, something I was prepared for really, but did not think it would happen so quickly!

   I have been a vegetarian/vegan (when being very good!!) for 3 and half years. I am not an animal lover (in fact far from it) and I turned veggie to help control my weight a bit more and to try to keep my body a little cleaner and healthier (well with all that wine and gin consumption you have to have a balance right??). I have eaten fish, a bit a cheese and a dribble of cream now and again but the only time I have eaten meat was in January whilst skiing here in France, one hideously cold day I succumed to a plate of spag bol! We had been here nearly 2 weeks and I was getting a little browned off with two choices of lunch, goats cheese salad (not really what you fancy when it’s bloody -10) or vegetable soup (a mediocre one at that). See this is the thing with the French they just don’t get vegetarianism, well maybe they do but they do not believe bacon or ham count as meat!!! I was told by a waitress a couple of years back here in Val d’isere that the local dish was vegetarian, I knew it was’nt, it is called ‘Tartiflette’ and is layers of potatoes, cream, cheese and HAM!! I learnt there and then it was not going to be easy and stuck to fish.

   So I had been thinking this year leading up to this move about the meat thing and I was thinking that really it was going to be near on impossible unless cooking for myself to avoid meat. I was also thinking about the fact that I have been much colder in the last few winters than I ever used to be, I must point out I was always convinced I was in a constant premature menopause having constant hot flushes, as I was always boiling hot all year round, but not so these past winters. So I was thinking about the local diet here in the mountains, which is a staple diet of dried/smoked meats, incredible cheeses, potatoes and bread (obviously once again this is France so bread with every meal!) oh and the obligotry side order of green salad. When you also look at the diets of the northern cold countries for instance Scandinavia it is the same again but being more coastal more fish. But a serious lack of veg. Maybe we need these animal fats to keep warm.

   By now you have probably realised where this going, so Thursday evening I sampled a little pate, which was delicious, then Saturday we popped to the Quicksilver/Roxy cafe for lunch where the menu is basically burgers. We did eat in there earlier in the year (with a terrible hangover, great hangover food though) and they had a vegetarian burger on the menu much to my suprise, but they now have a new menu, and guess what, I must’ve been the only veggie to ever order that burger so it is now off the menu! Now the fish choice was calamari and chips (which I love) but how much deep fried food should one really be consuming before the slopes are open for me to burn it off?? None I decided, so I had no choice but to sample the goods. (I am sitting here trying to remember what the conversation was in Pulp Fiction between John Travolta and Samuel L Jackson about what the quarter pounder with cheese is called in France??? Royale with cheese? Please leave me a comment if you can remember, it is soo bugging me.) Sorry off on a tangent there, all I need to say is that I ordered, ate and enjoyed a cheeseburger and fries!!

   Now I am not saying I am going to be eating meat full time but crikey I have been here less than a week, I’ll be eating trotters and ears by the time this 6 months is over!!!!

   Off out this evening to try out one the bars that IS open, might have a ‘vin rouge’ or two, purely medicinal, need to clear that beef fat from my arteries! ( that is my excuse and I am sticking to it!!)

Ps. Apologies to all (well, L, L & C, you know who you are) that have painstakingly sought and cooked veggie meals for me for the last 3.5 years, much appreciated though, they were always delicious!!

E xxxxxx

Monday, 22 November 2010

Some pictures or not!

   In yesterdays post there was meant to be pictures but blogger was'nt letting me upload them, so I'm gonna try again. Here goes.

  Still not bloody working!! Will try again later in the week!!


e xxxxx

Sunday, 21 November 2010


                                                                      Our new home.

   Well after probably what can only be described as the most stressful week of my life we have arrived in Val d’isere. I will warn you now that this probably going to be a very long post.

   Where to start?? Obviously saying the goodbyes was just so sad but it had to be done and I think I’ve used all my tears up for now. But we have visitors twice in January so it won’t be long before we see some familiar faces. And then we had major headaches with the house sale, no suprise there eh? We did’nt exchange contracts until the Tuesday in the end, the buyers at the bottom of the chain had’nt signed or returned their contracts until Monday so you can only imagine just how unnerving that was as we were told by our solicitor that he was getting wary, not what you want to hear. But all was well in the end, we exchanged Tuesday and we left on the Wednesday morning instead. I say all is well, the lying robbing bastards that are also known as the estate agents , have taken more money out of our sale than they were meant to so we are now on the case of sorting that one out!!! When will it end???

   Anyway enough about that lets start on the good stuff. W e set off Wednesday morning at 5.40am to get the euro tunnel across to Calais. Half hour later and we were in France. I should probably mention at this point that it is a wonder that our car moved at all given the amount of stuff we had crammed into it, travel lightly? Capsule wardrobe? Bare essentials I hear you say??? Ha, I do not know the meaning of those wise words, I must learn though! But it was not just me, whilst unpacking Mr found that he had bought an odd sock and four watches, one of which does not work!!!!!! I on the other hand found that whilst unpacking myself amongst countless other things I have bought 3 black vests, 3 white vests, 2 white blouses, 3 black skirts and a pair of 5” peep toe Louboutins!!!! When will I learn??? Oh and my heated rollers!!! He he!!

   So after a straight forward, no getting lost and traffic free 12 hour drive we finally arrived in the mountains at around 6.30pm. It was -5 and there was snow everywhere! We then had the almighty task of unloading the car, our apartment is on the 1st floor but it’s a split level building because it is built into the mountain, so each load had to go up 2 flights of stairs to get to the lift!!! It was then that we once again started questioning why on earth we have bought so much with us, but hey ho it’s here now!

   The apartment is great, needed an almighty clean, even though Mr was saying it’s me with the OCD even he agreed that it was in need of a major going over. What is it with dirty people??? But as it’s only a one bed apartment it was sparkling in no time at all. It is so strange but after just one night here it really felt like home, I have’nt ever really felt like that anywhere before. Bloody typical, if we wanted to buy it its worth £320,000.00, bit over budget!

    The first morning we woke up to it snowing, I cannot tell you how great it is to lay in bed and look out at the mountains with snow falling all around. We have enormous windows (which were filthy!! I may add, not anymore!!) the width of the bedroom and the living area so the views are just amazing, beats looking out at rows of houses!!! That evening I assembled a celebratory meal of smoked salmon, pate, cheese, olives, bread and salad with a bottle of champagne, an aperitif on the balcony then back into the warm for dinner. It felt lovely, good food, champagne, surrounded by candles and looking out to see it still snowing. This is what living is all about!

   It is strange to be here so early, the slopes don’t open till next Saturday so the whole village is a hive of activity with building work being done on hotels, chalets, shops etc, but there’s not really many people living here yet. There are a couple of bars open, a couple of restaurants and one cafe so it is a bit odd. But Friday night we went to one of the bars and got chatting to some of the other early arrivals and they were more our age group which was reassuring, although It’s mainly men!! Yesterday there were arrivals of a few groups of very young people that are rep training for the holiday companies, good luck if they are in charge of your holidays, they look about 15!! They were out and about orienteering around the village, they looked like they were on a school trip!!

   The one problem we do have is that we have no internet access in the apartment yet so have to use the one cafe that is open, you can imagine how busy it is as it’s the only one open. So I am currently writing this on Word so that I can just copy/paste and publish when we pop out later on. We do hope that we will be up and running sometime next week, but we are now living a life that does not require haste, rushing or stress so we just got to wait until we hear what’s going on. We have discovered that there is wi-fi in the building but neither of us know how to hack in!! Any suggestions would be much appreciated!!!

   I did the 1st shopping expedition on Friday, 35 minute drive down the mountain to a small town called Bourg St Maurice, and voila, a supermarket, I should add the only place open to buy food in Val at the mo is a Spar shop in a garage, £3.74 for half a loaf of bread!!!! But in the Super U in the town the same bread was £1.09, what an incredible difference! That is one of the reasons we drove out, I was already aware that food in the village is on average 60% more expensive than at the supermarket at the bottom of the mountain, so we will be driving down there once a week . The food selection was great though, loads of choice and loads of very unusual bits obviously , you know the French eat anything! Tripe anyone???

   So that’s about all for now before I bore you senseless. We are meeting a lady regarding work tomorrow morning so hopefully that will sort itself out, but we have heard that there are quite a few people looking to employ so that is good news. Although I have been told twice now to go and do nannying!! There are plenty of nannying jobs available apparently and its good money and few hours. If things get desperate obviously I will do whatever is available, but bloody hell can you imagine me doing that????? “Oops, Cosmo stop stabbing Fenella with that icicle!!!”

Will be back more frequently once we have le web!

Au revoir mon amis.

E xxxxxxxxxxx

ps. there was photos of apartment and views etc but blogger is'nt working!!!

Friday, 12 November 2010


             Yesterday I went to have my hair coloured for the last time (well professionally anyway, it will be Mr's job next time!!). I woke up feeling very weird, I had had a lovely evening having dinner the night before with some very special girl friends and it made me think of all the times I could'nt do things like that as I always worked so late, made me feel very sad that I had'nt had the chance to do it more often.

            So I think thats the reason along with the fact that I was saying the final farewell to my work girls was why I was feeling a bit blue. The house sale is dragging and stressing me out. I've been spending alot of time on my own packing our life into boxes and bags and I think the nerves are staring to kick in. I don't like the idea of saying goodbyes next week, the thought of it is making me sad.

            The lovely ladies from work bought me beautiful silver bangle engraved with a lovely message inside and I thought I'd been doing well, but their kind words in the card and the gift tipped me over the edge. It was only a matter of time of course before the tears started to flow.

            This saturday night is the final farewell to all our friends, then monday night will be the last supper with the family. Better get some waterproof mascara at the ready.

                                                        Sad girl

New to blogging???

     When I started this blog it was so that everyone I was leaving behind could read what I was up to on my new life abroad, and so that I could keep in contact without sending hundreds of emails, plus I don't really do facebook so this was perfect.

     Many people that I have passed my blog address on to be it friends, colleagues and clients have never read a blog and knew nothing about blogging full stop, even down to what to do with the blog address.

    I was in a similar position myself before my Lil' sis and  Mrs Fab got me to start this blog, I have found it amazing how supportive other bloggers are and how lovely to meet (virtually) new friends from all walks of life and all over the world.  It's a great release and a real pleasure to write away your thoughts and experiences and as a naturally nosy so and so I was thrilled to start reading all about other bloggers lives.

    So I thought that for all you newbies out there I would share with you some of the blogs I really enjoy reading, I am sure you too will become addicted.

 Smashing Bird 
 My lil' sis, fabulous vintage musings.

Looking Fab In your Forties
Fantastic fashion advice and the latest finds.

Fashion's Most Wanted
The lovely Christina, about all things glam!

Champagne and Lemonade
All about a fashion savvy, yummy mummy's life!

Make do Style
Stylish advice from a lady who knows.

Fashion Pearls of Wisdom
A girl after my own heart with a passion for fashion!

Coco's Tea Party
Celebrity style and fab fashion from a magazine addict.

The most yummy recipes!!

Liberty London Girl
A wonderful insight into the world of a fashionista.

Wendy Brandes
A NYC jewellery designer whose earrings were worn by Samantha in SATC 2.

    That should be enough to get you started, just click on the links above to have a look and there's plenty more on  my blog roll to your right.  Good luck and happy blogging!!

Wednesday, 10 November 2010

Ughh Packing!!

              Well I am a week and a half into the time I have had off to pack the house and organise the move. It is a bloody nightmare, how do we end up with so much crap??? I've done a couple of tip runs already and there's still more rubbish to be got rid of, where does it all come from?? I think the more space you have the more crap you seem to aquire and keep. Not forgetting it was only a couple of months back that I had a huge clear out and did a bootfair!! We've only been here 3 years, I dread to think what it's like when you've lived somewhere 20 odd years. Thank god we're moving into a 1 bed apartment!!!

               To start with it felt as though I was just moving things from one room to another and spreading it all around, and that just leaves you feeling in complete and utter despair about where the hell to start. But I am making progress, most things are packed, half is moved out and the only things left to pack are what we are actually using day to day. I've got to move more of the packed but keeping stuff out this afternoon so that the house starts to look a bit less like organised chaos.


               I've also obviously been sorting through my clothes and shoes and accessories etc etc, what to take, what not to take. Christ thats been a mission in itself. Thank goodness for dunhelm mills vacuum pack bags!! Still not sure how I'm meant to fit it all into the bags I've got, but it will, there is no question!!!!!How many boots is too many?? How many dresses is too many?? Where on earth will I store it all when I get there?? You get the situation!!!!
              I have also been buying 3 for 2, buy 1 get one free etc etc on all make up and toiletries for months too, I am aware they sell these things in France too but there are certain things a girls gotta have. The result of this is a little like Noah's Ark, a whole bag, I mean an overnight sized bag, full of cosmetics, body lotion, facial sunscreen (essential Clinique item!!) and skin care, in they went two by two!!!!

Do you think if I'm lucky the cosmetics et al will multiply themselves over time?? Would save me a fortune!!!
               So with less than a week to go it's all getting a little stressfull but exciting too. We plan to leave on the 6.20am train next tuesday, 16th. The house is meant to complete next tuesday too, but less than a week away and the solicitors still won't confirm!!!!!!!!!! Do they have any idea??????AGHHHH............

Thursday, 4 November 2010

Pom Pom Fun.

     Whilst out and about on saturday with lil sis, I was looking for a little gift for my cutie pie godaughter Katie who had just had her tonsils out! She's got to stay in for 2 weeks so that means mum too obviously, and little baby Isabella.

      So I had a look for something crafty she could do on her own to give mum a break and keep her amused. I came across a french knitting bee and pom pom maker!! Lil sis and I used to love doing both of these when were little 'uns, so we thought it would be perfect.


     So armed with multi coloured wool and the kit I set off for an afternoon with the little ladies! We spent quite some time trying to figure out the french knitting before giving up with that and concentrating on the pom pom making. What fun! Choice of big pom pom or little pom pom, we made a few of each and decorated little 'bella with woolly balls! It's a very satisfying pastime!! Although a couple of hours into it and Katie was happily chopping up the wool and scattering it around the front room!! Oh and we also spent some considerable time flying on her halloween witches broom!!!

Flying around!!!


Pom Pom fun!!!

              Ahh I will miss these times!! But there is Skype and I will be home occasionally, Its not all bad.

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

80's ski party!

       Saturday night saw a pleathora of big hair, neon and leg warmers. It was a bad look back in the 80's, in fact I think it's safe to say there were many a bad look back then but what fun to recreate and dress up in!! It was my farewell party with the girls, the theme was 80's ski party and a great time was had by all.

        The house had been decorated with giant snow flakes, many twinkling lights and fake snow (oh and a christmas tree & a french flag!!). Complete with 80's party buffet including vol au vents and cheese and pineapple on sticks!! The lovely ladies had even made us lift passes, with Val d'isere piste maps included!! Obviously there were some 80's tunes going on too, although 'the snowman' was taking it a little far!(we skipped that one). Chuck us lot in, dressed in what can only be described as terribly, and we could have been in resort 1982!

        I think the only thing left I can do is show you some of the pictures!

My lovely Lucy (right) and I, how big is my hair???

Don't you love those neon leggings? That fur coat was gorgeous, I 'd wear that now!!!

Natalies (2nd from the far right) goggle tan was hillarious!

Was that the neon glow from Lucy's leggings??????

      One last thing, bring back the bumbag!! It was so practical!!!! My hands were free, I was'nt clenching a clutch under my armpit and it had so many compartments I could find everything!!! Fabulous!!!

      Oh maybe one last thing, thank you ladies for a lovely evening and such lovely gifts, I will miss you all so much! xxxxxxx