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'Live the Dream' TV Shows & The Truth About Moving to France!

By: Maggie Lonsdale BA (hons) - Updated: 10 Oct 2012 | comments*Discuss
 
France Entertainment New Life Television

There are so many ‘Live the Dream’ shows on television nowadays that people start to think that moving to another country is easy – it’s all about drinking excellent cheap wine and carrying baskets to local markets.

Or, the viewers think it is too difficult to move to another country – too many arguments, too much paperwork and endless building problems.

The truth is, moving to another country and starting your new life in France is somewhere in between.

Yes, the wine is wonderful and loads cheaper, the markets do have great, local produce to be enjoyed over a long lunch. But in order to get that long lunch, you need to work hard and make sure you do the right things at the right time.

Entertainment – Not Reality

Don’t forget that these shows are made for entertainment – there will be some things to learn from them and they can be a great source of inspiration for your new adventure, but they are not real life. Weeks if not many months of real life is compressed into a half hour show and edited to show all the most exciting and difficult parts.

Imagine if your last three months were made into one half hour programme, too? It would look like you had loads of arguments, crises and problems, perhaps, if they wanted it to look like a hard life, or it could be edited to look like an endless round of dinner parties and shopping expeditions.

You do not want to be too cynical to be able to enjoy these shows, especially if you have already looked at the practicalities of earning a living, seeing your friends and family and being part of a community in your new home. You can sit back with a glass of wine at home and enjoy the programme – you may see areas of France you had not thought of, or learn a piece of advice that could be of use.

In order to be practical about your move to France, you need to be able to understand that these programmes show the very best and the very worst of what is available in France. You do not tend to see the nice families who are just getting on with things, their small daily issues that get resolved and the simple pleasures they enjoy.

The Truth!

The reality of moving to France is that it is what you make it, which is very likely to be similar to what you made of your life in the UK. This may not sound like a very exciting prospect, but it is important to point out as the antidote to the crazy adventures you see on these ‘Live the Dream’ television shows. If you are unsociable now, moving to France will not make you the life and soul of the party. If you get stressed out by paperwork in the UK, the French system will certainly not be any easier!

By accepting that your new life will, in many ways, be very similar to your old one, is a good way to take the changes in your stride. You can embrace the joys of strolling to the market to buy fresh fruit and local fish, you can accept that every piece of paperwork seems to require at least three others and that asking questions in official situations is not encouraged!

Enjoy watching the programmes as escapism – much as you would watch a soap opera – but remember that real life is a long way away.

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