« The Wreath | Main | French Husband Cooks »

21 September 2011


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.


Corey, most of your readers do not live in your village, but we live in a bigger global village, and if you travel, you have friends probably in almost every country. It is not bad, no? In case you run into me in Warsaw, we do 3 (three kisses) here :-).


Oh, to only have a five minute walk to whatever is needed. I envy you that, though several wonderful antique shops are but 10 minutes away by car, much further for fresh baked goods and farmers' markets. Right now, as I type, four deer, two fawn, are in my yard. So far, they are not eating the vegetation. We have a love/hate relationship, the deer and I.

Keep healing.


I live in Central Texas, where both heat and sprawling distance make it impossible to complete any household shopping without driving. Yet, we have wonderful farmer's markets and antique shops. We have many family-run restaurants, although since I am vegan and they all seem to feature chicken-fried steak, I do not frequent many of them. We have a symphony orchestra and active community theater and art guild. It seems that there is a street festival every other weekend. We have--or had--two beautiful state parks. What we also have in abundance is all those qualities one expects in a small town. Two weeks ago, our town and its nearby areas were ravaged by wildfires that burned down 1,554 homes and other structures and destroyed 95 percent of one of those state parks. The entire town has devoted itself to helping those who lost their homes. Lately, health considerations had prompted my husband and I to discuss moving to a town with public transportation, in close proximity to doctors, but we have tabled those discussions, so proud of our community.


When we lived in Brazil, we had a similar situation--the bakery, the butcher, the pre-school were all on the same block that we lived on--but there were also roughly 5000 other people who lived on the same block :) It was always, always loud.

Now, a suburb in Virginia, houses with lots of trees and sidewalks. I must drive to get to the nearest grocery store but the kids were able to walk to elementary school every day. There are woods behind my house and once in awhile I see a fox making its way through and there are many, many birds and squirrels (which drive my dogs crazy), deer and raccoons. It took me awhile to get used to the quiet here but now I love it.


I yearn for village life. We must hop in a car to do anything. We live on a couple acres that have been farmed by someone in my husbands family since the 1600's. It's gone from a huge dairy farm to a tiny peony farm in that time. Artichoke pate? Recipe please!

Brenda, Walker, LA, USA

How I enjoyed your post this morning! I would love to live in your village too! Yummy dinner last night, I will make Pumpkin soup this week! ;o) Heal well!


In our present living quarters, outside of Paris, it's a 'small town' too.... A fabulous bakery and a wonderful butcher are 6' on foot (a not so fancy patisserie a mere 3'), and going on foot into town is a 15' walk; there we have a market day, a middle sized chain store and umpteen shops of anything and nothing - sadly no brocante either... We also have 2 tiny lakes and little streams to walk along, ducks to feed, and often we go walking to a next village or town, have a meal there and take the train back.... very calm, very green, very beautiful and a stone throw from Paris.
BUT Corey, like you, we have friends all over the world - through the internet, by living in several countries, with family, by looking after people in distress (prisoners), through our church - we are VERY RICH - rich with love, friendship, caring, sharing interests!
Heal well....

Amy Kortuem

I laughed at myself this weekend after I went for a 6-mile run and then GOT IN MY TRUCK to drive down to the liquor store.

Paula S In New Mexico

Sadly, I live in a suburban area. Not much in the way of charm and I have to drive everywhere.

On the other hand my 6.5 year old grand daughter "Iris" lives just six houses down from me so I call my street "Paradise".


I live in a village in England and it's a little different from a French village in that it's not circular and our church bells don't ring out as they do in French towns. However, my little town has a Norman church and castle! If I go shopping I like to look up the street and see the top of the castle on the hill. Also, we have really old 16th century buildings and sometimes they are quite stunning. We have old pubs! Finally, some people say we have ghosts in our old buildings and that's always an interesting conversation!


*But there isn't a Brocante shop... and that is a downright sad, real sad.*
Eh.. I think that it soon(smile)will be. Because I mean all that stuff you have in your home taking up space...right?
Wasn't your husband having to do with buying and selling properties/apartements?
He can sell his plane and buy you a nice place were the first brocante shop a la Corey or is it chez Corey? will see the light of the day ;)in your town.
Anyhow get well.


YOU should start a brocante shop! Everytime you talk of your village and French villages and how everything is in walking distance, it makes me want to visit so very much! We live in a very rural area of southwest KS, but we drive to town to good ole Wal-Mart! Just doesn't have the same charm!


My neck of the woods? It's a town of about 3500 people nestled below the foothills to the Great Smoky Mountains in southeast Tennessee. The town stopped growing in the 1950's when the next town over got the interstate connection. So main street in my town looks like a movie set from the 50's- think the town from "Run Away Bride". That kinda town. But in the past few years there has been a revival of sorts and now we are known for our....you guessed it... our Antique shops. Although there is not as many as before the 2008 economic melt down.


I live in a small quintessential New England town. Church at the center and almost everything one needs within walking distance from my house. I love it!!! But I love the global village your blog allows me as well. Corey, I sense your humor in this post. You must be feeling better.


C, we live on a knoll where I can look out any window and see my sheep grazing. My children's schools are a few minutes away, TG, as one forgot her cell phone & the other his gym shoes this am. I need to drive 15-30 minutes to run most errands, except my town has a wine store, a French bistro bar, & post (whom I am going to speak to today - I learned yesterday that international packages must be stamped if they arrive damaged & will let you know). I am thankful for the beauty of my surroundings, but, would love to have the experience of living in a village like yours.
ps.your dinner last night sounded so good, yum - I'm going to try to make the soup & pate.


My neck of the woods is definately not even close to what you have!Walking out of the question.Streets too busy and too far to the "village".Neighbors to the right donot speak to us!Haven't in years(think it was our dog?)Very strange.But we do share one similarity!No brocante shop in town.I do own THE BROCANTE shop of the EAST BAY however!So, you must come down when you come home for a visit!The Italian Man will fix you a beautiful pasta dish......then dinner will start after that!OKAY?I do have a fountain in the backyard and chickens and two roosters too!Lots of roses, jasmine,and penny royal........are you interested now?!!


Corey your new pic of yourself is perfect! you know chico, you can walk to somethings if your close to downtown(which I am, but too lazy to do)Boy your a one arm genius with your cell phone,I'm still trying to figure out how to download to my cp. Have a nice day sweet cheeks!


We have had all sorts of issues with cars this summer, so the idea of walking distance is heavenly. We live in rural El Dorado County, east of Sacramento, and we don't even have public transportation. It is our car or nothing. But it is beautiful. And more affordable than many places in California. One other difference: people move here for privacy, so it is difficult to get to know one another.


Rhonda P.

You said a mouthful. First of all, walking everywhere is why I loved living in a city. To have a next door friend has always been my dream. Ask all my blogging friends, we all wish we lived on the same street.

No one on our street talks to each other, here in the southwest. It is sad and strange. The heat keeps us all in the house all summer but that is no excuse. Of course, I do have a naked neighbor, he walks around his backyard naked and he swims in his pool naked. Not everyone can say that. Not that you would want to.

Your town sounds so wonderful, it is what I dream about. You should open the first brocante shop.


We are nearly neighbors, Diane. Next time Corey is in Willows, you should go with me to meet her. Corey and FH are as delightful as can be. Corey is my daily inspiration.


We live in a small city where practically nothing is within walking distance (I guess it depends on how far you want to walk!). I've considered getting a small scooter to go back and forth to my job, but I regret sharing that I do not feel it would be safe--it seems that 90% of drivers feel that being on their cell phone while driving is acceptable and I do not feel they would be paying attention enough to risk being exposed on a scooter. Since we live close to a major street, I choose to access it about half a mile away by driving through side streets so that it gives the feeling we actually live in a neighborhood rather than just off a busy street.

Thank you for sharing your more idyllic village life with us! :) Hope you are mending quickly and soundly.

Linda G.

Hello Corey - We have only recently (2 years) moved to the Minneapolis/St. Paul area, and though we love it, I do miss the relatively small city we left. We had lived there for many years and though it wasn't exactly tiny (65,000 population) we had been there so long that we never went anywhere without seeing someone we knew. I miss that. And though there are many, many farmer's markets here, the one in that smaller town was a place to happen upon good friends, exchange hugs, and talk to vendors who were second and third generation farmers. There are compensations and bonuses that come with living in a metropolitan area, but sometimes I question the wisdom of uprooting ourselves at this stage of our lives. If we didn't have a dear son and his children living here, too, I might be tempted to turn around and go back. I know we won't, so I am doing my best to make this an adventure!


Oh how I am ready to come back home! I will see you soon....see if you can hold off on the chickens for a few more days :)



My neck of the woods is...wooded :) I live in a small town in Northern Minnesota. The nearest grocery store, post office, etc. is 5 - 7 miles away and most shops are a 1 - 2 hour drive. I love the seclusion and beauty in our area, but would also love to have some things within walking distance.


Love visiting your neck of the woods. My neck of the woods is a Leave it to Beaver neighborhood only with more ethnicity. I can walk to a lovely market, though it is about 1 mile. I can walk to a lovely school, that isn't really a school. It is a restaurant and movie theater and only 10 blocks away. I can walk to the post office, it is 1 1/2 miles. So I can walk, but it isn't right around the corner.

Your meal looks just plain delicious.

Tamra/The Gilded Barn

I am very fortuante to live in a beautiful area 30 minutes inland from the coast of California. I live 8 miles from town surrounded by vineyards and our house is directly across the street from a large horse ranch with the most exquisite barns. Our daughter is getting married in November and will be married in one of those barns. On my blog you will see a picture of a large barn and while this is not the one she will be married in it is the one we look at directly across from our property.

I do love where we live but I think given the chance I'd quickly pack my suitcase and enjoy the opportunity to spend some time in a French village.

French Curiosites

My neck of the woods at the moment is full of apple orchards with fruit ready to pick, pumpkins on the vine and trees that are nearly ready to show their fall colors. My neck of the woods to come is full of charm and natural beauty. Try not to hurt the chickens for a few more days:)

Julie Ann

I too am from England and live in the (increasingly busy) town of Sevenoaks. I am trying to guess where you live. I wonder if it is in Kent or East Sussex ? Kind regards, Julie.

Julie Ann

You make a very good case for French village life my dear friend but I think here you are probably preaching to the converted (which you did a long time ago !). Supper looks so good and I a carnivore too.
My town is (increasingly) busy although not a big town in itself. It is very accessible to London so it is a commuter town. It is also easily accessible to the Kent coastline, the countryside and the main road network and airports. For all these reasons it is a very desirable place to live and therefore becomes busier by the day. I am on the outskirts of the town in what is loosely described as a village but is not really in the traditional sense. It suits me in many ways, I am torn between wanting a greater sense of community and loving the city and all it has to offer, therefore my town bridges the gap. I do not like to be too remote for very long. It is however NOT FRANCE and there my darling friend lies the problem ! Jx

Kathie B

Better be a bit careful with that "3 kiss" custom if you go to other countries.

I've heard that in Portuguese culture it makes you engaged to the recipient of the 3 kisses! Oops...


I live in a very small "village" in the country, but only 1/2 an hour's drive to the nearest city. I am very lucky. I would walk more, but mountain lions are sometimes spotted in the area and it spooks me. I would love a situation like yours because I would exercise (walk) everyday! When I spent a month in Sevilla, Spain one summer, I lost weight even though I ate ice cream everyday. It was the walking!

Chris Wittmann

Corey your lovely photos and description of French village life is very much like the villages in England. I used to walk everywhere too, the green grocers for produce, the butcher for meat, etc. etc. All very much like France. Here in our small rural New England town I can walk to the shops (what few there are), post office and bank in 10 minutes. But everything is confined to a small area and surrounded by mountains and lakes, the nearest mall is an hour's drive away. It very much reminds me of Ambleside in the English Lake District where I lived except that Ambleside was by far a much much larger town. Soon I'll smell the sweet perfume of wood smoke in the mornings on my walk to town, something I don't recall while living in the UK. I think those few folks who had heat used gas, coal or oil.

Tamara Komuniecki

Hi Corey!

Well I don't think I am the first to suggest that you open up your own bricks-and-mortar brocante!!

I now live in a small village within North Vancouver. We moved here to Edgemont Village last December because I was feeling so isolated in Burnaby, being at with Finn during the week days.

Where we used to live, nothing was within walking distance. Because I have trouble getting him in and out of the car, we were kind of stuck. So we decided we needed to find a place that had shops and services within walking distance, and in Edgemont Village we found that and more.

There's a wonderful children's book store (and an adult one for me too), a great educational kid's toy store (not a plastic Disney figurine to be found!), TWO wine stores, a great sandwich shop, a fantastic Italian restaurant, a lovely Bakehouse, two cafes, banks, a grocery store, pet food store, drycleaners, and more. There are also many parks and playgrounds, and the school where Finn will go is a five-minute walk away.

We're so happy here. Finn and I go for walks and "pop down to the shops" every day.

For the first time in years I think we have found a place where we want to settle!



Ahh Corey! Even after all these blog years, your space here, and what you share still brings out the romance in my heart! I miss you, friend.



I live in an outer suburb of Adelaide, South Australia. I use to walk many miles years ago, to get to the shops, but my feet don't like doing that anymore. As much as this is a newish suburb, it was an old farming district 100 years ago and there are signs of that in and out of the streets. I live 10 minutes by car from one of the most beautiful beaches in the world (Port Noarlunga)and 20 minutes from world famous vineyards (McLaren Vale). I would love to live in the vineyard towns but that's not going to happen. We sometimes drive to them on the weekend. Nothing like the brocantes but we find food markets and antiquey type stuff. I love old towns and buildings, they make me feel comfortable. Hope you are healing fast.


when are YOU going to open YOUR braocante
LOVE the picture of the red boulangerie awning.
The French have a deeper understanding of the magic of color than we do...


No village here but still some charm. I can walk to my grocery store, post office, schools and the subway stop is just down my street which takes me anywhere I need to go on a larger scale. But I would do miss the friendliness of village life. I would love to experience again the slower pace of the life we had living in Heidelberg and the small village of Tackly England.


It sounds perfect. My town is small. I can walk for coffee or bread or to the school, but I still drive to the grocery store. Tomorrow is supposed to be "leave your car at home day" so I may ride my bike to work -- if it isn't raining.

Laurie in San Francisco

Taxi cabs, earthquakes, foghorns, and steep hills.

Karen C

We are central to a main train station, major and private hospitals, private and public schools, parkland, sports grounds and shopping centres. A perfect piece of Real Estate!
But, the neighbours no longer know each other, the train station and shopping centre attract a particular type of 'business entrepreneur' and most of the school students seem to live here with minimal parental supervision as their parents still live in their home countries.

However, we are reaching an age when it is good to be near medical help occasionally.
And people wonder why the south of France is so appealing to me??
Are you looking for a couple of middle age boarders, Corey?


We live in a coastal suburb of Auckland, the biggest city in New Zealand. It's a quiet suburb, we have gorgeous views of the sea and our own access to a tidal beach/ kayaks etc, but we do have to get in the car to commute to schools/work etc. I would swap places for life in a French village in a blink! Thanks for sharing the wonderful photos of your village - you seem to be as busy as ever for someone in plaster! Take care and wishing you a quick recovery!


You wouldn't dare "chicken out"


Hi Debbie,

I used to live in lovely Northcote Point Auckland overlooking the sea. Now back home in poor old post earthquake Christchurch. I envy you your view!


Hi Leigh
Thanks for your comments. Hope you are coping well with all the aftershocks down there. Christchurch was such a beautiful city - we hope and believe it will be again. Good luck with all of that!

linda marcov

I am liking a girl who runs six miles and then goes for liquor!!!!!

linda marcov

my village is full of surprises, one being a Bulgarian couple we just met at the post office, the local meeting place, so in this wee town of 269 people we have 3 Bulgarians, (my husband being one) and a French chef who is very aloof,a German cafe, with a very robust German cook,and his wife, and a man that runs a tavern resembling an English pub, called the Pig&Whistle.... he is a wild game broker... then we have a lot of local color, names can not be mentioned because they are a hoot, and keep us well entertained, good thing too, as there is only one very small market and gas station about 100 churches.. it is Texas after all.. anyway it is a sweet little place to call home for the moment.. who knows what's next!

Jane Ann

Your village is simply beautiful! I especially loved the iron work on your neighbors door. Your village photos gave me the same peaceful feeling that my "country" gives me. We live outside of a suburb of Vancouver, WA on a couple acres in the country. Our neighbors are there, but can not be seen. Our closest neighbors are fir and alder trees. It is a beautiful sunny spot (when it is sunny), amidst a stand of trees. It makes me sigh every time I drive down the driveway. I love the country. It makes life slow down and I feel very peaceful. I have to drive somewhere to walk. Isn't that funny? The roads here have no shoulder and country drivers are not always so great. All that walking in the 9 months of NW rain? I'm glad I have a car. I loved walking in Paris though and know I would love strolling through your village.

Have a beautiful joy filled day!

Pat Kahn

In response to your comment about your neighbor's chickens: in my hometown we have what we call "Rent A Rooster." That way the neighbors are not subjected to the high decible vocal whims of said rooster for longer than a day or two.

Pat Kahn

Oops...is right.

Jenny N

Oh, gush, and swoon Corey...yes, us there in your village would be perfect. So glad you are getting better and being well taken care of. My woods...are about 13 miles out side the nearest small town, down a dirt/dust/gravel road on a Texas hilltop, with 230 acres of right now, dry pasture and our now small heard of 13 cows, 1 big dog, 4 cats, other various wildlife and our family of five praying for rain, and yet loving the quiet country life.

dancing kitchen

I live a block from the beach in Oceanside, Ca. Everything is a leisure bike ride away...bars, church, yoga, stores. Every Thursday there is a sunset market, like a farmers/street fair. There's a live band and all sorts of venders. Come and visit Corey...you'd be welcome.

The comments to this entry are closed.

French la Vie Creative Journeys in France. Please join me in 2023 to learn more click here
French La Vie started in 2005. I have the "Brocante Bug," which means antiquing is my cure; France can do me no wrong when it comes to treatment ° 35 years living in France with my French Husband, whom I met while dancing in San Francisco ° Two children, now in their early thirties, amour et joie ° Come join our journey either vicariously through my blog or on a French La Vie Week Retreat in Provence °