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Showing posts from April, 2018

And yes, we are

We heard this morning, first by email, then by telephone, that our dossier for the larger apartment in the new Euratlantique district of the city has been accepted. We should be moving at the end of June. It is facing the not yet created Jardins de l'Ars. L'Ars is the little stream that runs currently under the road and that will be brought back to the surface to feed the gardens. And the final "s" is pronounced.

So are we moving?

We slowly compiled our dossier for the new flat by the river, the bigger one, at 83m2. The last letter to be added was an attestation from our current agency, stamped and signed, that we are up to date with our rent. This we received on Monday and added to the dossier. I texted the lady to say that our dossier is now complete. Then on Tuesday we went to see another flat at the other end of the same block. On the seventh (7th) floor, this flat had a LARGE balcony. It was a super little place, but the lounge was small, with a separate, small kitchen. In a show flat someone had put a corner settee and a round table with four chairs. That was OK, but we had trouble imagining 20 people for a bible study. Two bedrooms were ok, but the third was small. That third bedroom has to double as my office and a spare room, and we struggled to imagine putting a desk and a bed in it. But the balcony was huge. Biggest space in the whole flat. By the time we got home we realised that the flat was too s

Visiting flats

We went to see two apartments yesterday, very different from each other. The first was in the new area of town called Euratlantic. This is projected to become a new presitigious part of town with lots of offices for a financial centre and new apartment blocks built to the highest environmental standards. Until recently it was the edge of the district where the working girls are to be found, and at present it's a huge mass of construction sites. The flat was on the eighth floor of a block optimistically called "Residen'ciel". It had a lounge facing south and bedrooms facing north. Unusually, the bathroom had a window. On both sides there were balconies floored with that decking material. (I don't like the way it springs under foot.) The views were wonderful, out over the river. From the living room we could see the bridge that carried the motorway on the south side of the city. From the bedrooms we could see the spires of Bordeaux and the motorway bridge on the n

We are considering moving home

We love our flat. It's a very pleasant place to live. It has two faults, though. Firstly it's quite a long way out of the city centre. Secondly I have no office and we have no guest bedroom. I usually work on the (small) kitchen table, just alongside the washing machine. So today we are going to look at two different apartments, both in new areas of Bordeaux. The first is in a new district which is just being constructed on the other side of the station. It's one of M. Juppé's projects, the quartier Euratlantique, an area with financial services offices, a new bridge, the Pont Simone Weil, that crosses to the new Floirac Concert Hall, and two tram stops from the central station. The second is on the other side of town, at Bordeaux Lac, between the lake that was constructed decades ago on the site of the old land-fill and the huge shopping complex where Ikea is situated. We are also being considered for another flat that is being built and is due for delivery in

The race for naturalisation

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We have not proceeded with naturalisation, partly because it would cost us about 500€ just to get everything translated that needs translating, without any administration fees.

Birthday meal

Pat had saved up a little spending money for our anniversary which we hadn't used, so we decided to push the boat out for a birthday meal. That meant, after some reflection, la Tupina. La Tupina is one of the more prestigious but less swanky restaurants in Bordeaux. Rather than candelabras and funky crystal, it's gone for the best quality meats and fish from the river, cooked in traditional ways, often over the fire. For example, they do lamproie à la bordelaise (lamprey cooked in its own blood and red wine). It was around 30°C in Bordeaux today, but their fire was lit for grilling, as usual. We ate outside. They do a really good value lunch for 18€ and we would have had that but it was langue de boeuf - ox tongue - so we decided to go for their à la carte menu. Much more expensive, but we had that little fighting fund. So the girls had roast chicken. At la Tupina they despair of the quality of the chicken we get in the supermarkets. So their chicken comes from a farm on t

Some Wednesday music

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So we joined this choir

Last year was very serious. We sang Bach and Vasks. This year we have a big project on - the Requiem for Rossini, an Italian romantic requiem composed by a committee of composers. But it's also the 30th anniversary of the founding of the choir, so we're doing a birthday concert on 1st May. And for that the programme includes: In the Hall of the Mountain King, sung in Norwegian. The Hallelujah chorus, sung in Franglais "Oh Happy Day, from Sister Act, sung inaccurately ( He taught me how to wash, fight and pray ) America from West Side Story "Voici la quadrille" from Carmen "O Fortuna" from Carmina Burana Pavane, Fauré Cantique de Jean Racine, Fauré Ave Verum Corpus, Mozart The Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves, from Nabucodonosor. That's a lot of singing, and all accompanied by our gallant little pianist!

Every year they take me by surprise!

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Some music for a sunny Saturday

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The City of God and the Goal of Creation, by T Desmond Alexander

I sounded off a while ago about our tendency to have a somewhat one or at best two-dimensional approach to Biblical Theology, seeing one theme as key to unlocking the whole development and direction of the Bible's message - perhaps Covenant, or Kingdom. But the Bible gives us various diverse themes that run through the Scripture from beginning to end. One of these themes is the City. We can have a somewhat ambivalent approach to the city. On the one hand some of our cities are so polluted that you cannot breathe safely, your lifespan is shortened by the smog. Sometimes our cities are characterised by injustice and inequality, with extremely wealthy penthouses and terrible slums and housing schemes. Cities can be dangerous places with areas where it is unwise to go unless you are known and know how to behave. We dream of the countryside, of escaping to the hills, to the beach, to the mountain, to the forest. Of silence and solitude. Of clean air and crystalline water. Even typin

Is that ECT, BST, GMT or DKT?

We're an hour ahead of our dear ones in the United Kingdom. France operates on what, I believe, is called Europaean Central Time, currently at GMT + 2. Meanwhile the UK is now on British Summer Time, GMT + 1, which must seem like a bitter irony as the winds lash and the rain cascades. Incidentally the stress of adapting to this national tidal wave of sleep lost and gained is enough to account for a noticeable rise in heart attacks. So take it slowly. Certainly last week I along with many others was suffering with la crève, an extreme fatigue that comes upon you for no discernable reason, if not the change to Summer Time. But here in the Davey household we had another problem. Between our living room and our kitchen there was a noticeable time difference of about 6 minutes. We called this Davey Salon Time (DST) and Davey Kitchen Time (DKT). DST was well aligned with all the other clocks we knew, such as the internet, our mobile phones. DKT was six minutes behind. Our flat is w

The inauguration of the Chinese Church

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Yesterday we were so very privileged to be present for the inauguration of the Chinese Church, which took place at the Eglise Evangélique Libre in Pessac, about a 1/2 hour walk from our home. It's a rainy weekend, so we travelled indolently, by 42 and 44 bus, walking just a couple of yards either end of the journey. They say that when you are drowning your whole life flashes past you. Well we were drowning in a happy sea of thankfulness as all our life in France flashed before our eyes. We saw way back 15 years ago, before we arrived when two Chinese girls started meeting for Bible Study. Soon afterwards they were joined by a lad who became a friend of ours, and who later married one of the girls. Slowly the group grew. Our involvement with the group grew, too, until 2014 when we focused on the International Church Plant. Incidentally, it was thanks to a gift from the Chinese Group that I bought my first Apple computer. Friends were there who we have not seen for years. There

Some Walton for Thursday

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Better without the poem?

A spot of Haydn for a Wednesday morning

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At last

Spring has finally arrived, we had reasonable temperatures today and yesterday we turned off the heating in the flat. Usually we don't have to heat after mid-February, so we're at least 6 weeks late. Still, today the air was warm, the sun was agreeable and we felt like we had turned a corner.

Joyeuse Pâques

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