Thank you for being interested in this story and taking the time to read it.
My name is Sebastien, call me Seb. I am born in France, near Saint-Etienne, close to where ‘La Loire’ sprouts. January 1971, a French father and a Dutch mother. They married one year before and divorced one year after. Cultural misunderstandings accelerated this social break-down.
I grew up with my mother in Holland, never far from Amsterdam. As a child, I would go to my father in France during the school holidays. Thus I grew up in between two almost incompatible cultures.
Empty and lost as a young adult, at 24, I stopped my classical piano studies at the Utrecht Conservatory and left for France, hoping to find a better life in my birth country. I’ve always travelled a lot, before and after my departure from Holland, but once living in France, an interesting social and cultural discovery began.
In france I learned to be social, work hard and study. I learned to be open and interested in other people.
I found work that made me travel. I’ve been involved in various professional branches and traveled a lot, in Europe, spending short periods of time in different places. All together, I’ve lived in over 30 towns, in different countries: Holland, Germany, Belgium, England, and Spain, and some time in the US. I naturally understand most countries I’ve seen and their cultures.
But when arriving in France, I struggled for many years to come to understand the general behaviour of France, specifically. Through my Dutch education, I am closer to the Anglo-American make-up than the French one. Even after 25 years, I haven’t fully fathomed integration into the French lifestyle. Their character is different and ungraspable for most of the non-French people. Socially, mentally, and even physically.
It took me a lot of time to find a decent balance be able to live peacefully in the French culture, climate, seasons & fauna.
Although I have always found French people very welcoming, generous and hospitable, in some core layers of their social connections, a mystery remains. It seems to be only reserved for some authentic French blueprint. Though I’ve always been accepted and appreciated, I am still a stranger.
My struggle and fascination caused a long term study of this land and culture.
Today I highly recommend and appreciate it, and desire to share its operating rules, what I felt, think and learned, over 25 years of experience.
How the site works
The site is in its beginning phase. I am still working on structure, layouts and articles. But down you’ll get a picture of what is coming.
I have love for artistic expression and do not want to be a program-driven touristic information database. You won’t get a list of 24,000 results on a search. In France, there is simply too much to do and to discover, to put everything into one website and give it proper attention.
I will try to do things the French way, on the feel of it, with a sense of balance and harmony.
I will make selections, and write about places and events I suppose worthy to be spoken of. Parallel to that, you will have the opportunity to look for nearby villas to rent, if you are interested.
There are 3 Sections
Looking at villas, one by one, going through pictures and descriptions.
Looking at places, to discover.
I present regions and cities.
This also includes an agenda of important events.
Or you may want to look through a list of touristic activities to stimulate ideas for your stay.