So, when we first arrived in France, after living with Pastor Didier and Shannon for 3 days, we moved into our first apartment in a neighborhood called Celleneuve in Montpellier. We had no idea how long we would be there, but it was fully furnished and available to us until May if we wanted to stay that long. We lived there for 2 weeks and met amazing people, our landlords. However there were also challenging things about it: in order to get into the city, we had to take a 25 minute bus ride into downtown and then take the tram for another 20 minutes. We would've had to do this every morning to language school and JJ's school. We were also sleeping in our living room on a fold-out couch, had a very teeny fridge, and had no internet. So, a friend put us in contact with a woman whose business it is to re-locate people. I called her after day 13 in France and she took us the very next morning to see the "Pavillon" - a guest house attached to a house which belonged to a very dear friend of hers.
When we met the landlords of the Pavillon, saw the house and garden, we made plans to move in. However, there was a glitch. We could live there for almost 2.5 months and then would have to move out for 3 months because they already had people lined up to rent it out during that time. We loved it soo much and wanted to get out of the tiny apt, so we decided it was worth it, and we took it. And thus began the days at the Pavillon: we learned to compost, we enjoyed hanging our clothes on the terrace off our bedroom, JJ loved playing in the garden with our neighbor's son, we started having weekly dinners with our neighbors, etc... All was good at the pavillon except for one big thing: it was extremely expensive to heat during the winter. We were freezing - wore my robe most of the winter OVER my clothes.
But then came time to move to our temporary apartment as expected. And it was more stressful than we thought it was going to be - packing up all our things, and cleaning the whole pavillon, which we agreed to do before leaving. Emotionally it was also stressful to get used to a whole new neighborhood and biking routes. So we moved from a "pavillon" to a 1 bedroom apartment where we would have to sleep in the living room once again. It was quite an adjustment but then we got used to our space, enjoyed the balcony, and loved our new proximity to downtown. 3 months is long enough to really get used to something, so as was expected, just when we were getting used to our surroundings and apartment, we knew it was soon time to leave. AND while we lived here we also had the realization that we probably shouldn't go back to the pavillon. We knew we needed to find a place with lower rent and utilities.
So, one month ago just when we thought to look for another apartment or move back to the Pavillon and look for something later, a man came up to us from the church, the same man who is selling us the car, and told us of an apartment, also near downtown, that he owned and that would be open in 4-6 months. So, it was decided - we would move back to the Pavillon and wait for this apartment to be open. Then about 3 days ago, he called to tell us that it was free now! We couldn't believe. It is actually free 4 days after we have to move out of this apartment. So, we made a decision and called our NEW landlord yesterday to tell him we would take it.
So now we are moving to missionary friend's apartment for 4 days (they'll be in America on vacation) and then moving to our new apartment on the 28th. How are we feeling today? A little tired, a little stressed about packing and getting used to a whole new apartment and neighborhood, BUT we're also relieved to have found a place that works for us, and we won't have to move again (hopefully)!!!
We only have these pictures for now (from our landlord), but we'll post more when we move in!