Pessac - France
Southwestern France -
near the city of Bordeaux
(Part of the Show me your Neighborhood Series
with The Piri-piri Lexicon)
|Fun place for the kids to play|
|The full playground - Not huge by American standards - but nice by French.|
Transportation in our neighborhood is really up to the individual. We have public buses that run into the city, to the local shopping center and where ever one needs to go. There is also a wonderful tram system in Bordeaux. Presently, the tram system only comes out to the most Eastern part of our town, but new lines are under construction to arrive in our quarter by 2015. Most people out here have at least one car, and more often now, 2 - but for local errands there is definitely a preference to ride bikes or walk. we sometimes even ride our bikes to school - about 20 minutes. I love the fact that our public transportation system provides these rental bikes all over the city - One can even take the bikes on the tram system and then return them to any other bike kiosk.
|Bikes part of the City wide - rental system|
|Even the mail is delivered by bicycle in our town.|
|One of the public buses that run throughout our town|
Our houses are not the typical city houses that one sees in urban areas. Most people out in our suburb have larger yards and the houses sit back behind walls. The French people like their privacy. Unlike American neighborhoods, which are open and yards run side by side with often no barriers, French houses are built and then enclosed. As this area was at one point, "the countryside" and fields were divided up into parcels - often houses sit behind each other with an access driveway running along one side allowing everyone entrances to their property. Our house is actually like that - we sit behind another house and then behind us are natural fields where horses run about. It's really nice to watch the horses, practically in our own backyard. Another property trait that is common here is that a family may have owned a large plot of land about 50 years ago and then children or grandchildren built their houses on pieces of that property.
|A typical street in our area - Property & houses sitting behind walls|
|Houses vary in style - it's hard to get a good photo as they sit behind walls, but here's one example. Some house are 2 floors -others are ranch style.|
Another great feature about our neighborhood is that we have our own little shopping area. This short little street includes all the essentials that one might need. A small Carrefour market, a fruit/vegetable store, post office, optician, hair salon, dry cleaner, florist, fish market, photo store,wine/liquor store along with a few assorted shops. Just down the street is of course, a pharmacy. Yes, amazingly - everything one needs is here. Many people walk or ride bikes to this area -or as you can see stop by on the way home from work.
|Everything you need on one little street!|
A school or Educational facility -
It's difficult to get a photo of a school or educational facility in France as they are located behind doors and like houses are all protected behind gates. When we drop our kids off at school, the gates are open and only the kids walk in. So far, as a family, we have experienced the Maternelle (Pre-school), Primary School and Middle School here. The set up of classrooms at the Maternelle and Primary school levels are fairly typical in comparison to American school classrooms. It is highly dependent on the teacher as to how much decorations or color is displayed on the walls. The middle school classroom is more basic, as often teachers share classrooms and have office areas, not individual classrooms.
|The indoor courtyard of a Primary school. This was the first day of school - so parents were allowed inside.|
|This is a newer College & lycee (Middle & High School)-Note the Black & White wall in front - One has to ring a bell to be let inside.|
A Local supermarket
|Our small local grocery store - Great for local quick errands. There are also larger supermarkets located within a 5 minute drive.|
|We can't forget our local Boulangerie or bread store - we stop here daily! |
Often the kids will ride their bikes here to pick up bread.
A few more photos to give everyone a feel of our area. We have several parks, all within biking distance. One of the things I love best about a Sunday afternoon is to head out on a bike ride and just enjoy nature!
|Another local park - we love to ride our bike here!|
|We love our local parks - several to choose from!|
|This is our town's Mayor's office - located in the same park as the playground! |
Many couples get married here on Saturdays! Beautiful place for photos! - don't you think?
I hope everyone enjoyed my little tour of our neighborhood. It's a great place to live and as I said in the beginning - I feel like we get the best of both worlds from here. I certainly do a lot more biking and walking here than i did in the States - for that i am grateful. My children are also more independent here as they will run errands for bread or go to their local activities - all by bike. It's definitely a different lifestyle - but in some ways reminds me of how my parent's grew up in the States - where everything was also close by and they walked or rode bikes all over the place! Thank for taking the tour with me. Please click the link above or below to enjoy other neighborhoods around the world. Thank you The Piri-piri Lexicon for organizing this great event!