I must admit that I'm quite happy that all the Christmas hullabaloo is now over.
We had a wonderful few days. The food was 98% good, the children really enjoyed themselves, and everyone had far too many gifts. A classic Christmas.
I'm not fussed about staying up till midnight to welcome the New Year. If there's a good line-up on Jools Holland's Hootenanny TV programme, then I might be tempted; but otherwise, no.
Actually, I have looked at Jools's 2020/21 guest list, and other than Ruby Turner, I'm not really fussed.
Our main concerns now turn to Brexit. I'm pleased to see that my E111 health card will still be valid; albeit in a new format, but the prospect of being unable to stay in our own home for more than 90 days is crazy. This really needs to be re-negotiated. Freedom of movement is a universal human right, and MUST be preserved; regardless of any Macron/Bernier puerile Brit-bashing. They lost the game; get over it!
Winter is now here. It has been cold (zero C), very wet, and icily windy; with a few sub-zero nights still to come for early January. There is little outside work to be done, so a spot of extra log sawing duties presents no problem.
Books will be read, afternoon snoozes will be enjoyed in front of the fire, and slow cooked casseroles will warm our bellies. Life isn't all shivering, we enjoy walks with Billy and the children, and we chat with friendly neighbours. I don't like winter; in an ideal world I would now be in Martinique, Guadeloupe, or the Réunion. But, frankly, I can't be bothered.
I'll just have to bloody put-up with it until things warm!
Freedom is not a basic human right. We have all seen that this year. Freedom has to be fought for and throughout history this has always been the case.ReplyDelete
I'm an Englishman, and I've been brought up with freedom. I don't intend to relinquish it now, just because of some EU tantrums.Delete
I think you have some more bad news. Your E111 has been useless for a decade or more.Delete
Maybe it's just changed its name. E 112 perhaps?Delete
...but the Brits voted against Europeans freely moving into UK. Immigration was a huge pillar of the leave campaign. We can't have it both ways.ReplyDelete
They didn't vote against EU citizens, who have homes in the UK, from living in their own homes. They mostly voted against cheap imported labour taking away their high-paid jobs.Delete
I despise winter, wish I could just hibernate until spring.ReplyDelete
My people owned a house in the South of England where the main bedroom had a knocker on the door. They later discovered that the previous owner hibernated every winter, and the knocker was there for his maid to enter with all that he needed. Very sensible man!Delete
Cro, I had a maiden Aunt like that.... she lived with her companion... they were both WW1 bereft women, their intends left out there on the battlefields of the Somme.Delete
She hibernated all winter, catered for by her companion who "fed and watered" her [my non-Aunts description].... non-Auntie spent the winter organising their Spring to Autumn itinerary... which relatives to visit and when, what cruises to take, which resorts to visit and, possibly the most important.... which adventures to create... Nile journeys, Orient Express trips... and one to the Amazon, organised my my Grandfather who was an explorer & shipping agent for the British Government, specialising in South America. He flew them out to Buenos Aires for that, of which part was by airship!
My Aunt had inherited money so the pair never needed to work, and my Aunt covered all the costs.
They were also inveterate boozers.... they lived in Somerset and my father went to stay with them just before the Second WW.... they drunk him under the table on cider the first night!! What a way to live!!
I can just picture them, and liked them at once.Delete
Are you supposed to leave the country and re-enter after 90 days?ReplyDelete
We will have to stay out of France for 180 days (I think). I can't really see it working, so my fingers are crossed for a re-think. It'll be all those French folk living in the UK who'll shout the loudest.Delete
If you are in the French tax system you are not included in the 90-180 system, but you will need to register for one of the new, post-Brexschitt cartes de sejour by the end of JuneDelete
Your S1 form for medical cover remains valid.
The UK won't give me an S1. I'm scuppered.Delete
Days of reading, eating slow cooked casseroles, and snoozing in front of the fire sound pretty good to me.ReplyDelete
Not much else to do at the moment, the weather is really foul.Delete
Concerning this 90 day/ 180 day business, have you received official notification? Why should we be expected to abide by rules that are drawn from internet searches? If I were in your position I would just stay put and plead ignorance if the shit ever does hit the fan - which it probably won't. Nobody knows the exact figure but over a quarter of a million British people live in France. There's strength in numbers.ReplyDelete
"Plead[ing] ignorance" is bad advice, YP. In the motherland there is a saying that "ignorance/stupidity doesn't mean you'll go unpunished".Delete
Let's leave aside who is to blame. Cro is in a shite position as, indeed, am I. I don't think the French will show him the way to exit. The British Home Office? They have tried twice long BEFORE Brexit when all my papers as a citizen of another EU member country were solid. Once they claimed I was Polish, the other Turkish - with my passport right in front of them. Both times they left me dangling for six months a piece. With no communication whatsoever. Your trust is touching - yet of no comfort to those who find themselves in the middle.
In fact, YP, that's exactly what we intend to do; make ourselves invisible and hope for the best. We do have a house in Brighton that we could occupy, just in case.Delete
We also have a saying in the US...It's easier to get forgiveness than permission. I think laying low and waiting to see what happens is a good plan.Delete
We shall see. I can't imagine loads of CRS coming with guns to accompany us to Calais.Delete
The ninety day rule only applies to non residents .ReplyDelete
Becoming a resident has tax implications...which is why I am not so sure it will be revisitedDelete
If you are resident in France for longer than 6 months you are legally obliged to become a French taxpayer... this rule applies the other way, too... if you don't, and the French authorities discover that, they are able to claim all the back tax from your first day of residence!!Delete
Someone I know had a tax bill of 190000euros because they tried to be clever .Delete
It's all very complicated concerning tax. Those who become resident could be liable to tax on UK property sales etc. One needs to be very careful.Delete
We are wintry here too Cro - envy you the log burner but not the sawing.ReplyDelete
I shall go and do some any minute!Delete
Freedom of movement is a universal human right? What utter tosh. Every country has laws on migration and immigration. All of them restrict it.ReplyDelete
The only human right I'm interested in, is for ME! It's my freedom of movement that counts. For everyone else I couldn't give a fig.Delete
It should be a right, Ro. But, as you say, it isn't. And that was the beauty of the EU. Leaving all the EU's possible failings aside we were all part of a family or, maybe a better comparison, part of a village. Strength in numbers and all that. Britain splintered away (well, half of those who voted did). The bit I can't get my head around that the younger generation(s) will pay the price for their elders' folly. Luckily, freedom of movement won't affect my son since he is in the lucky position of dual nationality, holding a British and an EU passport. Not just figuratively but metaphorically speaking, he'll be able to queue wherever it's shorter.Delete
Is that your house in the photograph Cro ? It looks beautiful and is a lovely shot of it.ReplyDelete
There's not much to do this time of year so, its best to hunker down and eat and drink !!! XXXX
Yes that's our wee cottage. Lady M is baby-sitting, and I've just chopped wood. That is the highlight of our day.Delete
Your home is beautiful, Cro, and I hope you will be able to stay.ReplyDelete
Winter is hard on many of us but I am looking forward to it this year. In a month or two, I will be getting the Covid vaccine and I will be able to hug my children and grandchildren once again.
I don't know when we'll get the vaccine. We, as foreigners, are probably low on the list.Delete
The easiest way to spot human rights is when they are not there.ReplyDelete
Yes, I've been trying to think of any time in the history of the world where once could just live anywhere he/she wanted without some sort of process or permissions or change of citizenship. ??Delete
That's why I voted to remain. Everything was perfect before... other than the poor UK being bossed about by Brussels.Delete
Cro, here's what you do... apply for U.S. Visas for you and Lady M, establish residency in any of the 50 states, Puerto Rico or the U.S. Virgin Islands, and you can travel freely throughout North America. No 90/180 rule.ReplyDelete
My late Father-in-Law was 'Our Man' in Puerto Rico, so maybe that would stand us in good stead.Delete
Yup and pay US taxes on worldwide incomeDelete
I'm sorry Cro, but many people in the UK voted with the very aim of stopping the freedom of movement. It never was and never will be a universal human right. The days of Empire when we enforced that for Englishmen (sic) are long gone. We no longer are the world power we once were and we have to get used to that. The Windrush Generation reaped the reward of assuming that because we needed them at one time they would always be welcome. Many non-French-tax-paying Brits in France are of no real economic use or benefit to France so I woudn't bank on a right wing French Government's support. You can, and may, return to the UK easily but many are not in that position.ReplyDelete
As I mentioned above somewhere, I think they voted to stem the relentless tide of economic migrants, not to stop those who have the means to buy property, support themselves, and enjoy what their adopted country offers. 'New Money' is always welcomed in every country in the world.Delete
With about 5 countries now threatening to quit the EU, I think the Brussels xenophobia will return to haunt them.
Graham, thank you for bringing the Windrush Generation to my attention ~ that and the Windrush Scandal, which as a foreigner, I had no knowledge. Cheers.Delete
Your home is a beautiful place to hole up for the winter. Very glad about your health cards as well.ReplyDelete
It's small, cosy, and cheap to run; I can't think of anything better than that. We had imagined that we would end our days here, but that is now being denied of us.Delete