30 May 2010

The Move to France

As mentioned in FFAF no. 75, I have just moved to France. This has been a long term plan of my wife and I, so it wasn't a sudden thing. I've effectively retired from full time work as well (More time for Philofaxy!).

As this was our first house move in 24 years, you can imagine it was a fairly major move. The date of our move wasn't finalised until about 4 weeks before the actual move due to being linked to the sale of our UK house.

I sort the advice of Laurie, who is a frequent mover between countries... which sounds bad I know!!! But her tips proved very useful and included things I had not thought of.

Naturally, my Filofax proved to be very useful in the move, both for the organisation of various lists and for noting down important data. I'm a big user of To-Do lists anyway, so their use didn't surprise me at all.

One thing that happened almost by accident was I started to use coloured notepaper (because I had some already) for noting down information for different things, using the different colours to signify different functions and requirements. So utilities went on to green paper, financial on to blue paper etc. It separated out the different sections in that part of my Filofax without having to use tabbed section dividers. Having used this technique I will certainly use it again.

Having had a couple of days to recover from our last day of packing and the journey over to France I've just sat down and rationalised the contents of my two 'working' Filofax organisers.

In my Slimline I took out the completed To-Do lists that I'd been slavishly using, and the notepaper information and filed them carefully. As I use the Slimline as my wallet, various cards have been removed... likewise my UK money... I've asked for some pocket money in Euro's from my dear wife. Is it pay day yet was her reply!!!

Similarly in my A5 organiser, I've been updating my To-Do lists and started off some new ones of things we have to do now we are here... so the process never finishes, it just moves on to a new phase.

Thank you also for all your best wishes, very kind of you.


  1. Good luck in France! Cheers - Giovani

  2. All the best Steve and Alison on your move to France! Wishing you many many happy years in your new home! One question, has a corner of the house been allocated to Filofax? ;-)

  3. The reason I haven't yet switched over to a Regular Slimline from a Pocket Slimline (to use it as my "wallet") is the length. It's rather long at 190mm for the front pocket of a man's pants, though fine in the inside jacket pocket. The back pocket location might likely result in some bent rings, n'est pas?

  4. DJ, I've never liked carrying anything in my pockets, even keys or pocket change.

    So with the move to France I've gone native... Man bags are popular here so at the moment I'm using a substitute one until I find a bag I like that's the right size etc.

    I'm using a portable CD case at the moment it's got two compartments.

    My Filofax goes in the back along with my keys, and my phone, glasses and sat nav go in the front..

    Like Filofax organisers, you have to find a solution that works for you....

  5. Agreed, and Steve, I admire you. First for pulling off the move to France and second, for your Filo-savvy. With Filo, keys, mobile, MP3, Swiss Army Knife (with corkscrew--after all, when in Rome do as the Romans), your approach makes more sense than ever. Un suggetion: an Eastern Bloc officer's map case, I have one from the former DDR, über-masculine with pebbled grain that matches the Finsbury slimline exactement. You can find them on FleaBay ;) or sovietski.com. You won't have this problem en France, but if you travel to the States or UK and people accuse you of carrying a purse, just use the line from Seinfeld: "It's NOT a purse, it's EUROPEAN!"


  6. BTW Steve, these Commie map cases have two compartments generally, so you can maintain your protocol of glasses, phone and GPS in front, Filo and mobile in back. They also have 3 or 4 circular cutouts where you can slide in pen, pencil, highlighter, whatever.

    Filofax, you are missing a HUGE market here for man-bags! JUST BUY UP all remaining stock, stamp them Filofax "WARSAW PACT," with that quaint hammer & sickle peut-être, sit back and collect the profits!