I really really enjoyed this book it is so interesting and as I will be taking my 10metre boat from Portsmouth to le harve up the seine to Paris next year 2018 and eventually the Mediterranean I will be spending lots of time on the canals and will be using this book for reference. Thankyou
From the beginning I very much enjoyed this book, the scene was succinctly set, I liked the writing style and it moved at a good pace. When life presents obstacles some people see it as a sign and have the courage to change direction and grasp something completely different. Cris and Linda are two such people and their something different is an old, forgotten Dutch barge in a boatyard in Burgundy that they plan to take to Paris.
This book glides effortlessly along, just like their barge on the Burgundian canals, pausing every so often for snippets of their life back in the US. There is a good mix of croissants, idyllic vineyards, pretty towns and markets plus the many hiccups and woes that no matter where you live will dampen the spirits. Cris’s good humour helps bring in the smiles even when their plans go a little off course and his description of their waterside community often had me laughing. There are times when the dream of living in Paris seems a long way off, but they are not the giving up types. This book has everything I'm looking for in a good memoir set in France.
Don’t miss the little language extras at the end of the book – Cris is a funny man!
This book is just such good fun. We follow the fortunes of Cris and Linda as they face a life-changing decision and make the momentous move from California to France where they pursue their dream of living on a boat in the French waterways. The writing is fresh, compelling, funny and at times poignant and we laugh and cry along with Cris as he negotiates his way though the vagaries of the French language, dodgy mechanics, hellish canal locks and engine failures, meeting along the way a whole host of river-dwelling characters. Life in France doesn't turn out to be all wine and cheese on the boat-deck by pretty little villages, but there is enough of that to make the adventure worthwhile. Recommended.
Just finished reading Cris's book and found it just about the most entertaining book I've ever read on cruising the French canals. His experiences with buying, renovating and eventually cruising his barge through the canals mirrored mine exactly, I wish I'd read his book before I bought my boat, I wouldn't have made half the mistakes that I did.
Amusing and inspiring. Brought back happy memories of cruising French canals in a hire boat. When can I join in the barging around Europe? Got to persuade she who thinks she must be obeyed, maybe start with another holiday in a hire boat! See, I told you it was inspiring.
A lovely book to get lost in. I live in France so some of the characters were very typical. I have a hankering for one of those lovely Dutch barges, but alas with a handicapped husband not at all possible. Thoroughly enjoyed.