Things are different here, as you would expect. However, in terms of my daily routine, doing what I need to do, it is similar, well sort of. Most mornings at home I run or walk under a cornflower coloured sky, (well for the most part!) along what was an old railway line and what is now is a well maintained trail, flanked either side with trees and shrubs, a place that I am inordinately fond of. Here, still trying to exercise, I see the same blue sky but to one side of me is a stunning thousand-year-old castle, a place where people have lived for centuries, before the trees at home had even begun to grow. I am running on a somewhat chaotic gravel path (doing my best to avoid the evidence of ‘les chiens’) and am filled with wonder, thinking of all the secrets those stone walls must hold, of all the people it has wrapped in its fold. As I do my loop and return to jog back through the sleepy town I realize in 40 minutes I have seen no one else exercising, just people scurrying about. Teenagers off to school, mothers dragging reluctant tired, small children, people hurrying to work and others rushing home with their baguettes for breakfast. Despite the biting chill there are people sitting at the street cafes all bundled up sipping their espressos. There is also a seemingly abundance of elderly men shuffling along, alone and sad, looking quite cross and barely grunting when I, vision of unloveliness, bounce past them with my enthusiastic ‘bonjour monsieur’. What I would do if any of them tried to engage with me in rapid French I am not quite sure!! As I turn down my beautiful street I think how lucky I am to be here. I turn the key and know that my day will continue much as at home, several hours working at my lap top, except that here, to find my lap top, I will be treading up a winding Rapunzel stair case, twisting inside this delightful house which has already enfolded me in its embrace making me feel happy and at home.