EDF, the main French electricity supplier, finally hooked me up yesterday (Monday), meaning Malo and I fully moved in just then. All of my things had been moved two weeks earlier; luckily I’d kept essentials — and Malo — at my old place just in case any unforeseen problems arose. A simple yet big one did just that: I realized that I have a macerator on my toilet. Toilets hooked up to macerators do not work without electricity…! For the last three weeks I’ve been going back and forth between furniture and appliance deliveries, work, moving smaller things to and fro, watering plants at both places, and chasing after EDF trying to get the electricity turned on.
Helpful advice for anyone in France needing electricity: do not use EDF’s website. I got a grand total of one reply to my request to be hooked up, and then… nothing. I had to phone them twice to get it straightened out, because their “email service and telephone service are separate”. Meaning that a customer request via email, cannot be handled by telephone. Which makes no sense, but whatever. Just phone EDF, that way you’re sure to be hooked up. However, pay attention to the contract offered! Use their website to read up on the different offers before phoning so you know exactly what to ask for — and how to say “no, I do not want X and Y.” EDF are particular pains in the rear end when it comes to making perfectly innocent-sounding assumptions about the contract you want, never once asking you anything more than the power level you need.
A very positive note was the incredible rapidity of my internet provider (Free). They switched my line in four days! Of course, without electricity, I could’t use the modem… but on Monday it was among the very first things to be turned on. I still haven’t managed to reply to anyone’s email though!
As a result of my exhausting running around and juggling far too many things at once, I also haven’t taken very many photos yet. I’m taking a short vacation next week (to be spent chez moi), so more will come soon. In the meantime, in addition to monsieur le chat Malo perching contentedly on the bar:
o New refrigerator in its nook — omigod I am in love with my refrigerator. It’s quiet, bright, the perfect size, and I thank myself every time I open it for paying the extra for a fridge-on-top, freezer-on-bottom combination. I also love the layout of my kitchen: the refrigerator and bar shelves are right behind the stovetop, meaning everything is right within arm’s reach.
o Terrace / patio before replanting. My now-previous landlords said I could take the bougainvillea with me, which is great since it should be quite happy with room to climb. I could hardly believe my eyes when I saw it and the other plants on the new patio — they filled my previous balcony, but look downright tiny at the new place!
o The terrace / patio after replanting shows the same: you can barely make out the bougainvillea in its new home.
When pulling out the old, dead trees to replant, I was surprised at how crumbly and healthy the earth felt. Then I came across an old friend I hadn’t seen in eleven years; one I saw all the time, often carousing about underground in groups, when gardening in Oregon. An earthworm! One of my new neighbors stared at me quizzically when I burst out, squiggling earthworm in hand, “mais il y a des vers de terre ! C’est super !!” (“There are earthworms! Awesome!!”)