I have a new best friend named Lervia.

I’ve begun a not so clandestine relationship with a new friend named Lervia.  Steve doesn’t mind at all, and no, he wants little  to do with her.  When I return to the U.S. I will leave Lervia and not keep in touch.  She does so much for me, but I’ll leave her behind without so much as a fare-thee-well!  Who is this mysterious entity?  She’s one of the several appliances with which  I’ve had to develop a relationship in order to keep the vermin away.

Lervia is the name on the vacuum cleaner that I found tucked in the pantry closet.  As appliances go, she’s pretty easy.  I’m an old hand at vacuums.  Ask my kids.  How many have I gone through since you’ve been born?  I get a bizarre feeling of satisfaction once I’ve vacuumed a floor.  But Lervia is not your average vacuum.  As I found out and related in my blog on the washing machine, European machines are in a class by themselves.  For the most part I think that they are well-made.  Maybe better than american machines.  Lervia not only sucks up the dirt, she also dries my hair at the same time.  I had just finished a shower and started to vacuum with my hair still wet.  In no time my hair was dry from the air blowing from the TOP of this canister vacuum.  I love multi-tasking!  By the way, Steve won’t call her Lervia, but insists on calling her the Suck Vac 6,000 (shades of Wayne’s World and Wallace & Gromit together). Do I detect a hint of jealousy?


When Steve and I  stepped into an appliance store out of curiosity yesterday, we found that there are some high-end appliances here.  Would you spend 240€  for a toaster?  No piece of bread is worth that as far as I can tell.  But what I did find is that a very popular brand here is Moulinex made in France.  In the apartment Madame has left a Supermix 150,  Multi Moulinette (food processor) and the Jet Stream Pro iron.  All made by Moulinex.  I’ve checked on amazon.com and have not found anything close to the Jet Stream Pro.You fill the base with water and the attached hose supplies the iron with the steam. Our children were smaller  and weighed less at birth than this machine. But it does a fantastic job ironing  clothes!

Moulinex Jet Steam Iron

The washing machine here is not  the wash/dry variety  like the machine in our first Grenoble apartment.  Quel dommage! So we found a dryer rack similar to the one in the first apt. and  to the one that I use at our U.S. home.  I peeked into one of les laveries automatiques nearby.  As far as I can see, drying clothes there is time-consuming and expensive – several € a load. Plus, the dryers are very small.  My 14€ drying rack will save a lot of €s and provide needed moisture to the air when winter sets in.

Finally, I want to acquaint you with an item that is ubiquitous here in this urban environment in France.  That’s le chariot á commissions. It has un base repliable pour rangement facile et roues silencieuses.  Aussi, il est solide, maniable, léger et spacieux.  I couldn’t wait to get one.  We didn’t buy an expensive one, but there are some that have quite a personality.  Ours is,  by choice,  Duke Blue. (Once a Blue Devil, always a Blue Devil!)  But I have seen bold tartans, slick neon colors and life-like animal prints.  Some even have messages like, “I’m single”.  You can make quite a statement with your shopping cart!  Since we don’t have a car, all our shopping is on foot or by tram.  This cart is invaluable. Now if I could only equip it with an engine and figure out how to ride it!

Quel dommage!: What a shame!

les laveries automatiques: laundromats

le chariot á commissions: shopping cart

un base repliable pour rangement facile et roues silencieuses: a folding base for easy storage and  silent wheels

Aussi, il est solide, maniable, léger et spacieux: Also, it is solid, handy, light and spacious

The cart

Clothes dryer


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Barbara & Jim Johnson
    Aug 23, 2010 @ 17:55:24

    I enjoyed the update. it is interesting how other areas use different types of equipment and ways of doing things. It sounds like you are learning alot and enoying the differences.
    Has Steve started classes yet?
    We will be in Dusseldorf and Brussels in September for Jim’s work but probably not long enough to come your way. Maybe next time, we can plan something.
    I will be hanging out and exploring on my own if you want to come north!
    Love ya,


    • steveandmo
      Aug 23, 2010 @ 20:11:35

      Hi Barbara, So glad you will be coming to Europe soon. It would be nice to visit, but we are in a situation since we have not gotten our stamp for our visa yet, and so we cannot leave France! Otherwise, we cannot reenter, but must go to the US to get another visa. We are waiting for them to contact us so we can have our interview and physical. But, France is on vacation! We have to have this done by the end of Sept. so we hope they contact us soon. We have no way to contact them, but by mail. (No phone, email, etc.) So let’s see about getting together another time when we can really enjoy sometime together. ~Peace, Maureen


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