30th December 2012

The new year 13 is nigh. Hope, despite its number, it's a lucky one.  We should all take a moment to reflect on how our lives are going, and I can't think of a better time than when one year ends and a new one dawns. Is there anything we can learn from our mistakes and do better?
For us, living in France is still an uphill climb - but we're learning. And slowly, slowly the EU seems to be recognising that there're a lot of expats living in France who need a helping hand. Whether it's restrictive French inheritance laws, completing onerous tax returns each April or health rules - gradually the French (with a nudge from Brussels) are easing their 'living in the box' mentality to recognise the needs of expats.
Last April expats in France got a boost from their language struggles by reading that  being bilingual helps your brain and even wards off Alzheimer's.  There was even a lovely story where a British woman is helping French dementia sufferers by taking her two dogs into a care home in Nice. One male sufferer, who can no longer speak, laughs out loud when the dog licks his face. I know - you're gonna say this is unhealthy. But sometimes, anything that reaches deep within a person's soul and gives us a reason to carry on living can only be a good thing in my book. Him indoors joins me in wishing you all a very happy, healthy and loving New Year - wherever you live. Keep smiling. :)

1 comment:

Marie King said...

My thoughts are with anyone who has a parent or parents with dementia. My mother was diagnosed with dementia and although it wasn't a complete shock to us, because we knew something was wrong, it rocked our worlds. Ever since her diagnosis my siblings, father and I have been trying to read all we can about it and how other people are dealing with it, helping it or helping to prevent it. I just finished a great book that I'd like to recommend to anyone else going through this same ordeal; it's called "I Will Never Forget" by Elaine C. Pereira. You can check her and the book out on her website http://elainecpereira.authorsxpress.com/. It was a really great read. Thanks for this post, I love the idea of dog therapy!