Saturday, October 2, 2010

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Getting Acclimatized and settled

The only eventful part of the trip to Paris was the San Diego airport where we found that we had two overweight items.  The help of a kind United agent and the use of a little Brazilian portuguese saved us quite a bit of money.  We arrived a little early and daughter Kathy and her husband David were waiting for us.  We are still staying with them and will be for another three plus weeks.

God has been gracious in providing a nice used car at a good price.  For any car buffs it is a 2007 Dacia Logan.  You can surely check it out on Google, if interested.  Finally, today we learned that we have been accepted to rent a house in Villers Saint-Paul, the area I felt God was leading us to.  It has been quite an adventure renting a house or apartment.  There is little for rent.  Usually you have to wait one to three months for occupancy.  They qualify you by your income only and ours is not too hefty.  We are a different breed of animal - both retired and from a foreign country.  But... our God has been able to overcome all obstacles.  Praise be to His Name!

We are anxious to get there and get settled; then go to work.  God has frequently needed to remind me of the need of patience and that patience is a virtue, not a glitch in my plans.  The next step will be to get the house furnished; then to start meeting neighbors and shopkeepers; joining social clubs, etc. etc.  I'll be back in touch after we move in and get settled.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Arrival in France

It was easier to write about the sequence for leaving than actually doing it.  Getting rid of the final items was a breeze thanks to Greg and Jim (once again many thanks!).  Taking care of the final details was a little more difficult.  Packing proved a challenge as we had kept too many things to take with us on the plane (more on that in a minute).  We ended up finally getting to the 4 PM gathering at Ken's at 5 PM, grungy and sweaty.  It was great to see Alyssa as well as the rest of the gang there.  We were happy to get to Phil's and to bed that night (Monday).  Tuesday was relaxing except for me (Harold) needing to go to the bank and exchange some funds.  Language skills, etc. helped both there and at the airport the next day.
The gentleman helping with the exchange has a grandfather in this region of France and had visited two weeks ago, including the town of Creil.  Once that was established he helped me get the very best exchange rate.  Then the next day at the airport we found out we had two overweight pieces at $200 each.  The lady was helpful but became doubly so when I found out she had spent years in Brazil and talked to her in Portuguese.  With her help we ended up paying $65.  We are now in the throes of exchanging more money, finding a place to live, buying a car and furniture, etc.  My official activities will start on Monday attending a meeting of evangelical leaders in the area surrounding Creil.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Off to France

As almost all of you know, we have received our visas.  We have tickets to France on Sept 8.  The things we are shipping have been delivered to the shipping warehouse (many thanks to our pastor Brad for his help).  We have sold the car.  Most of the little furniture we have left is sold also.  It will be picked up, delivered, etc. on Monday and we will go to son Ken's for a return party for his oldest daughter, Alyssa, who has been dancing with a Christian ballet company and now retired because of back problems.  My other son, Phil, will pick us up on Monday evening.  We will spend the last couple of days with him and his wife Penny.  He will then take us to the airport on Wednesday.  More to come once we get there and have news worth sending.