Well, for some, it's au revoir. Unbelievably, a retreat from the French idyll is under way as a plunging pound sends Britons dashing back across the Channel.
When Mandy O’Sullivan and her husband Richard bought a stone farmhouse in Eymet 5 years ago, they thought it was for good. They sold their house in Kent and spent heavily on restoring their new home. “When we started out here, the euro was 1.50 to the pound, now it’s down to 1.07. When you’re on a pension, it’s frightening. The cost of living has shot up in France, for things like food and utilities,” she said. “Our electricity bill is up 45% over the past year.”
Sidney Wynn-Simmonds, 73, another British resident of Eymet, said: “Our pensions have dropped in value by a third. "We don’t have aperitifs, only from time to time.” Shame! However, as in the UK, all are finding it difficult to sell their homes in a falling market. And just how do these people think they can get back on the British housing ladder? Or maybe they were never really dedicated and kept their English house 'just in case'?
So, what does all this tell you? Don't emigrate on a whim. All places have their downsides. The trick is to maximise those things in life that are important to you, and learn to deal with the difficulties.
And my economical advice to those still contemplating coming to live here? You need a basic 1000 euros a month. More - and it's paradise, less and you'll struggle. It's as simple as that.