MA FOLIE FRANCAISE
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"I once lived in a place far, far away. A land where "les folies" were a regular and standard occurrence. Where each day presented new challenges and endless temptations sought to ruin me."
Ma Folie Francaise is a book for anyone who has ever wanted to fall in love with a foreign country. Charming, passionate and inspired it will make you want to follow your dreams, pack up your life and shift to France.
"A vivacious contemporary tale of life, love and dreaming. A sheer joy to read."
“These past eight years now appear so fleeting in retrospect with La Maison de La Coquille relegated to a bundle of ribbon-tied memories and stored with photo albums and antique linens in a large cardboard packing box.”
With eight wonderful and highly successful years running a charming Bed and Breakfast in the glorious south-west of France behind her, Marisa Raoul and her French husband Jean, share the next chapter in their French folly. When the everyday grind of running a busy B&B becomes too much for them, they take on the even greater challenge of restoring a 17th century ruin in the tiny hamlet of Mauranges. They magically transform what seems a lifeless pile of rubble into an amazing new home, where their lives once again travel through twists and turns that neither of them would have ever imagined.
In this uplifting and yet, at times, melancholy sequel to “Ma Folie Francaise”, “Club Mauranges” will take you on a journey through the life and growth of Marisa as a woman torn between two countries and a thousand memories.
It will leave you yearning to know the next step in her incredible life and make you realise that all dreams are achievable…even if they don’t all end with the fairytale “happily ever after”.
La Maison de la Coquille Treignac
My lovely country kitchen where I spent my mornings putting together scrumptious breakfasts for my guests
The dining room
Guangzhou's sleigh bed, my "palace" mirror and our couturier's table where we served breakfast each morning
The cure's garden
We found the stone-mill table already there and made a gorgeous garden where I often served Devonshire teas
A special occassion
President Jacques Chirac opening the Salle Paul Pouloux inside the old chapel just opposite our home
A twin town celebration took place outside our front door...brass band and horsemen travelled about the village. The old covered market place where market took place each Tuesday and saturday can be seen in the background
A view from La Ruelle
The little lane ways that run through the village were some of my favourites. This shows a view from behind our home
My sharpei Guang-guang sitting in his favourite place by the window, checking out the passers-by. He became quite a tourist attraction in his own right.
Or porcini mushrooms as the Italians call them. We could collect kilos and kilos in the local woods and I once made over 50 jars of conserved mushrooms with just one collection
Tarte aux myrtilles
A great shot after my nephews Kenneth and Julian joined me eating a myrtle tart...memories :)))
I remember crying this day as I took this photo, thinking to myself "What have we done?"
Me with my pitch fork carting away the rotten thatching from the roof and burning it on a giant bonfire.
The finished exteriors
Our last summer... with the granite walls repointed and sand-blasted and the wood work repainted, the wonderful poppies glow beneath the golden stones.
Le four au pain
The wonderful ancient bread oven where the village folk would have once made bread for the entire hamlet. We restored this wonderful building and used it regularly...here it sits under the first winter snow