As long as I an in the US, visiting family and having a wee holiday, I thought I would entertain you by reprinting:
The Saga of the Titre de Sejour, French Paperwork in 4-parts
Part I April 3, 2006
We finally have official permission to live here, in France. Our Titre de Sejour (Carte de Sejour Temporaire) was issued last week.
It only took two years!
It’s supposed to take two months but apparently, we were ‘fast-tracked’.
But wait, there’s more….it expired on Feb. 17, 2006.
In case you are unable to get your mind around the intricacies of French bureaucracy, (or believe that I can’t get my fingers around a keyboard), our ‘Titre’ expired 1 month before it was issued.
Wait, correctly, it expired 1 month before it was typed; it was actually issued 1 year and 1 month before it was typed.
Can’t you just hear whoever did the paperwork giggling as they put in the dates?
With our ‘Titre’ we were handed the blue documents to commence the renewal process and instructed to make certain that we had all of our documents submitted 2 months prior to the expiration date.
Bien sûr! (But of course!)
To be fair, some of this is our fault. When we left Andorra we wrote to the French Consulate and asked if, after having lived in Andorra for 7 years (with President Chirac as one of its co-princes), we still needed a visa to move to France.
We wrote again.
They said ‘We answered that question the first time you asked and the answer is the same!’.
Apparently, as they knew the answer they saw no reason for us to know as well.
So, in typical ostrich-fashion, we put our heads in the sand, said to h___ with it and moved, April, 2004. A month after moving we filed our papers.
They came back: “You need an entry visa.”
We argued our case (which, by the way is both a complete waste of time and incredibly stupid…never argue with a bureaucrat with a rubber stamp. If they need to have a particular piece of paper to affix their stamp to they will have that piece of paper! They simply close the file until the proper paper triggers its re-opening and they can use their stamp.)
Fine, we’ll get the visa. This was June, 2004.
Stay-tuned for Part II
And try this lovely chicken while you wait….
Sometimes (often?) simple things are best. This is such a simple recipe and results in such tender, moist, juicy chicken it’s really hard to believe.
We want to do more to things: tweak this, add a bit of that…. It can be hard to resist. This recipe calls for two things: chicken and lemons.
If you make it (and you should) please resist the urge to add herbs, salt, butter, oil or anythings else to it. Just say NON! You’ll miss the subtle flavor.
I don’t know where I got the recipe. I do remember that it was a food magazine and it was called ‘Italian Roast Chicken’. That’s a much nicer name than the one my family dubbed it. I’ll give credit for the name to my DS. He makes this often to show off his culinary skills to friends and girlfriends. He calls it ‘Lemon Butt Chicken’. Descriptive, yes. Accurate, yes. Did the name stick? Absolutely!
Roast Chicken with Lemon
1 whole roasting chicken, cleaned
2 small lemons, preferably thin-skinned and juicy
Roll the lemons on the counter with your hand a few times, pressing lightly. With a toothpick prick the lemons all over, 20 – 25 times. Put the lemons inside the chicken. With kitchen string (or whatever) tie the legs together. Twist the wing tips around so they are tucked under the back (if you don’t do these last two it won’t affect the recipe – only the appearance.)
Do not salt, butter, oil or anything else.
Put breast side DOWN in a roasting pan and roast at 350F for 30 minutes. Turn the chicken over and roast for 30 minutes. Turn the oven to 400F and roast for 20 – 25 more minutes.
Skin should be golden brown and puffy. Remove, carve and serve with pan juices.
For all of you living in the U.S. cleaning the chicken normally means rinsing. For the rest of us it means pulling off the few remaining feathers…. and, sometimes, cutting off the head and feet. I do draw the line at butchering, however.