My name is Graham Welch and I am a Francophile. This blog is a celebration of all things French – from France’s cuisine to its culture, from its people to its places. I started it in 2014 and posted every day of the year – hence the name. Since then I have taken a more relaxed approach to updating it.
I called it A year in Périgord partly as a play on words on Peter Mayle’s autobiographical tale of life in France. That I planned to spend both my summer holiday and Christmas in Périgord in the blog’s first year made the title apt too.
The blog came about because my passion for France has been reignited in recent years.
I’m no stranger to the country: I studied at university in Rennes and I’ve worked in Paris. I speak decent French, though it could always be better.
My partner and I were getting our finances in order and preparing to make the move to Périgord. However, Brexit has brought forward our plans to move to France by about 5 years. We figure that if we go now, it will still be relatively easy.
He has landed a job in Lille – about as far from Périgord as it is possible to be – and is living there full time. I’m commuting back to London 3 days a week while I look for work too.
While I do that, I am continuing to write this blog. I write and edit as part of what I do for a living (over the years, my work has been published by a number of national, local and trade newspapers and magazines) but this is different. This is about writing in my spare time, about things I love.
That I picked up a couple of awards in 2014 for this blog was particularly satisfying. It suggests people enjoy what I write.
Now I am working with a French journalist on a non-fiction book – more about that another time. I also plan to have a bash at writing a novel set in France. I have just finished studying for a French wine qualification too, so there will be plenty to cover in my posts.
I hope you stick with me as I make progress with these projects.