Thursday, July 26, 2012

My Reward

Today I got to deal with French bureaucracy. There's always a certain 'dread' factor involved in this. You know what a 'dread' factor going to the dentist has a dread factor of 10, while sitting through your child's parent-teacher conference is about a 2. Luckily, I've become more accustomed to working with the bureaucracy here, so what used to rate a 10 is now down to a 'dreading to parallel park' factor of around 4 or 5. Today I began the process of renewing my long-term stay visa which meant a trip to Cahors and the department Prefecture. Armed with copies of every piece of paperwork I even remotely thought they might require, I managed to negotiate not only finding a place to park, paying the fee, finding the Prefecture and asking for the correct office, I also managed to speak relatively okay French to the very nice lady who helped me. Of course, there's more to do...sigh! I knew it wouldn't be one-stop shopping.

But here is my reward! The sunflower fields along the Lot are in full bloom. They cheered me on the way to Cahors and were my reward for doing the dreaded deed on my way home. Couldn't resist stopping and taking a couple of photos. Let's hope their sunny faces also shine on my renewal papers!


  1. Ok, these pictures make me miss France now.
    Whether I lived in Paris or in the US, sunflowers were always a symbol of being home in the summer for me.
    Not this year (and no sunflower to be seen anywhere around me, just rice paddies).

    Concerning the administration, I don't know how it is in Cahors, but after having dealt with the Paris one for a few years, I was always amazed to deal with nice and helpful people in Agen.

  2. Reward well merited. Around here last year every other field was full of sunflowers. This year there are far fewer - something to do with subventions, probably.

  3. Hi David and Vanessa...the sunflowers are stunning, eh? I can see why they make you miss France, David. The lady in Cahors was so nice. In fact, everyone I've dealt with has been nice. I just get really nervous that I don't have all the correct papers. I think I've learned that no matter how many papers I have, I'll always be missing something! So, I'm just goin' with the flow, as we say in the States. And what a beautiful flow it is here in France!