Monday, April 30, 2012

Credit Card Usage

Hope your packing and planning is going well! I am busy doing the laundry and have several piles of gear stacked on the bed of my not-so-spare room ready for the suitcase.

Here is today's tip: I just contacted my Visa co. to let them know that I will be travelling out of the country. I was asked if I had arranged a "4 digit pin number" as it is required in most of Europe when making a transaction.  I was advised that if I didn't have one, or couldn't remember the number it is important to get one set up. this requires a trip to the local branch of the banking institution for my Visa card. 

Do you have a 4 digit pin number? One more thing to check before we embark on our adventure!

Happy packing,

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Needed! Your Travel Information

Please contact Rosmarie at the Ottawa office if you have not provided your flight information. We are making our arrangements for airport pick-up and need to know when everyone will be arriving and where they will be making the connections. 

We have information from, Margaret, Anne, Carrie, Carol, Lynda, Marilyn and Linda.
Still waiting for Eva, Deanna, Mary Anne, Marlene, and Doris.

Email Rosmarie:

Monday, April 23, 2012

Keeping In-touch With Family And Friends

Yes we have internet access at Le Monastere! 

A computer is located just outside the lounge for us all to share. 
There is wireless, but the access is a little limited so if you bring a laptop you will need to hunt down the signal. I recall that you can connect in the lounge and in a couple of other areas of our home.  It is a big stone building that is great for peace and quiet but those wonderful, thick walls make it tricky for digital signals to pass through.

You may find a cafe with free wifi, but unlike home there is not a Starbucks or MacDonalds on many corners. With this in mind, I hope you will enjoy our trip as a great escape from all of the hustle and bustle of internet and tele-marketers! 

I will bring along my ipad for internet and presentations I have put together as well as for viewing photos of the locations we visit for studio work. I plan to bring along a card reader that works with the small SD card for uploading some of our photos to the blog, from time to time, for family and friends to see what we are up to. We may even try a mini video!  Please be sure to pass this site on to your gang so they can see what you are up to and post their greetings to us.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Getting Ready!

The date of our trip is quickly approaching so it is a good time to arrange for euros at your bank this week as they may not keep foreign funds sitting in the vault ready for your adventure. 

In an earlier post I mentioned that you will not need loads of money as most of our activities are already paid for in your fees and that you should be able to access cash through the ATM or use a credit card. 

Be sure to contact your credit card company to advise them that you will be out of the country. Some cards track your spending and if they notice anything unusual your card may be frozen - which is no fun to try and unlock when you are unable to make a purchase in France.

Counting Down the Days!

Plans and back-up plans!

You will be picked up Saturday, May 5 at the Toulouse airport. 
Once you have your luggage make your way to the waiting area. It is a small airport and you will easily find benches and washrooms. If you arrive early you may be on your own for a little while - don't panic - more guests are on their way. Stay in the airport. You will recognize other painting guests when they drag in with suitcases and look eager but rather dazed and tired. If they have an art case it is another good clue. Don't hesitate to ask if they are on the painting adventure so you can have a new buddy.
I will arrive in Toulouse the day before and stay at the Novotel - travelling back to the airport on Saturday morning to meet you. I will also look tired, but enthusiastic and happy to be in France! Someone from le Monastere will soon arrive to drive us to Limoux. 

When I travel, I am always sure to have a piece of paper with the address and phone number of my final destination! So I want you to have this important information too!

Our final destination is:

Le Monastere
3, rue de la Mairie, Limoux, France

Phone: 01133468310909

Find a phone and call to arrange a pick-up.
Here is how the phone works - if someone is calling from Canada you need the whole number

If you are in France at a pay phone you do not need 01133 so if you are in Toulose call 468310909 - if that does not work try again but do not include the 4

This is the number for Le Monastere - however, there may not be anyone able to take the call at that moment. The phone is in the kitchen and if there is no one cooking the call may not be heard. Again don't panic! Leave a message to tell us: 

1) who you are 
2) where you are 
3) what you anticipate your situation to be 
4) what time you will call back - give us a couple of hours to retrieve the message and someone will stay by the phone to receive your call.

The drive from Limoux to the airport takes 1.5 - 2 hrs so it may be some time before someone can come and pick you up. When we speak we will sort through those details. If overnight accommodations are necessary you can get a hotel shuttle and we will pick you up the next day. I have stayed at the Novotel Aeroport or Ibis Toulouse Blagnac AĆ©roport hotel - both are close to the airport and a good price.

Please stay together as a group and if possible stay at the airport. 

PLAN C - more adventurous

If you arrive in Toulouse and for some reason you decide to get to Limoux on your own you can go to the Toulouse train station and take a train to the station in Carcasonne. It is a shorter drive from Limoux and we can pick you up closer to when you might call.