La rentrée

September has always been a significant month for me. I think this is because my career has been based in education. I see September, and the start of the new academic year, as an opportunity for a fresh start. I used to look forward to a new timetable, new classes and new stationery! As a pupil, a student and a teacher, I always loved getting new pens, folders and pencil cases. I still enjoy going into Paperchase now!

This September has meant a return to Castelnaudary after two months in the UK, catching up with friends and family. Our French house hasn’t been empty, our eldest son and seven friends spent a week there, before travelling on to Barcelona. It was an international gathering as there were four English guys and four Brazilian girls!

Then our youngest son and five friends were the next to have a holiday here. As they are all students, it was great for them to be able to have a break in the sun without breaking the bank! They were able to relax and enjoy the pool and, by the look of our cellar, have the odd bottle of wine … or six!

As a result, we have also ‘inherited’ a rather nice barbecue and an interesting selection of inflatables, plus a variety of footballs, basketballs and rugby balls!

When we returned to Castelnaudary, we found our garden had morphed – yet again – into a field! Truly, I’m not complaining, although it might sound like it. It’s just one of those things that happens when you are lucky enough to have a second home. When we left our home in the UK, our garden was looking so tidy and well cared for. We were even complimented by our neighbours! Yet, we know, by the time we get back, it will be back to square one. Still, gardening is a brilliant form of exercise…

We’ve had some gorgeous weather since we returned. Look at those blue skies!



You can just catch a glimpse of the pool. The water temperature is a very pleasant 25 degrees! The shrubs in the foreground are oleanders. I was delighted that they survived being hacked pruned by Mr FF.



One of the first things I like to do, on our return, is check the Canal du Midi is still at the end of our garden and then visit the port. This rather moody looking shot, was taken while eating breakfast outside a new boulangerie that has recently opened. The colour is really quite odd and, yet, I like it!
Of course, la rentrée is really all about the return after the long, summer holidays. This could be a return to school, university or even work. In my case, I was delighted to return to teaching my English conversation classes. These take place in the rather grand (from the outside) Palais de Justice.


I often think that September is the perfect time for me to make some blogging resolutions. I’ve been meaning to update my blog for some time. I need to update my profile and photo. However, my main aim is to change to a self-hosted blog and I think it’s time I changed the appearance of my blog, too. Watch this space!




4 thoughts on “La rentrée

  1. It must be lovely to be back in France again – but I want to ask you about the mozzies! We were in Moissac last September which is right by the Canal du Midi and the mozzies very nearly ruined our time there. I was bitten so badly we couldn’t sit outside which rather defeated the object really!! I mean I loved being there but they were so vicious!! What’s it like and if that happens to you – what do you do?

    Liked by 1 person

    • It is lovely to be back! Ah, those pesky mozzies and, according to the local news, this year has been the worst ever; something to do with the very unusual weather. I have a very sensitive skin and I get bitten whereas my husband doesn’t. Last year I was introduced to a brilliant product called ‘Synthol’. You buy it from a pharmacie and apply it, diluted, to bites. This has been working for me so far but, of course, what one really wants is not to be bitten, in the first place! I’ve been experimenting with the Avon dry body spray which seems to be working, so far. I even discussed mosquitoes with my conversation class and one or two suggested an anti-mostquito band that you wear round your wrist. When I’m next in the pharmacie, I’ll ask the chemist for any other suggestions and get back to you. I’m still managing to spend a significant amount of time out doors and it would be a shame if you stopped coming to this beautiful part of France. x


  2. Some lovely bright photos, June. I think when my children were small, September was more significant as. New start, but nowadays I try to think in shorter bursts of time so the change of season tends to force some kind of beginning. I’m currently having an Autumn re-think regarding soft furnishings (minor colour changes) and clothes/style.
    Like you I have always loved stationary. Nothing quite like a lovely new notebook!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you! I was given a new phone for my birthday and I’m pleased with the results, so far. I’m so glad that in the UK time is generally marked by the seasons, although I’m not sure what happened to spring this year. Yes, the joy of a new notebook!

      Liked by 1 person

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