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So the Air France pilots have finally gone back to work but for how long I wonder and how long can the Air France partner, KLM put up with a closure like that happening again?  They are running a huge number of code share flights so it hits them just as badly.   Now the pharmacists don’t want competition, is France really ready for change?  It doesn’t look like it.


Has anyone told SNCF drivers that their company has a set up a bus line?   I don’t really see it as much competition because they seem to have a series of not very joined up routes.   Megabus have now started operating from London to Toulouse and some other destinations if you have a bit of time on your hands.


It appears a lot of Scottish people like being in the UK and not quite as many want to get out. Head Scot Salmond is being replaced by another fish, a Sturgeon, and at least she’s in the present tense. So far no one has requested best of three, but  it won’t be long.


Has the ban on Miss Trierweiller’s book been lifted by French bookshops, thereby allowing the download market to grow some more?  Yet another ‘Ooops , I shot myself in the foot’ moment for French business.


The world seems to fall further and further into turmoil.  China appears to be about to resolve it’s thinking on democracy, the Middle East is largely a seething mass of people killing each other and West Africa is heading towards being a disaster zone with Ebola, and they still seem to be letting people travel in and out.   While the ceasefire in eastern Ukraine appears to be the sham it was expected to be.


Wouldn’t it be amusing if Boris Johnston defected to Ukip, that could a bolting horse that would be difficult to stop?

This is officially the 10th anniversary Flyer, the first was sent out to 35 email addresses on the 6th of October 2004, people have supported it, copied it, and still it continues. Thanks for reading, please do pass it on to as many others as you can. THere are definitly new people arriving all the time now, especially with the strength of sterling







Thousands of regular readers make the Flyer the place to be seen



Lost in France



It is a bad idea to drive close to the vehicle in front of you.  You have no idea what the driver of the vehicle in front of you is going to do.  He might brake suddenly because he has seen something in front of him, like a cat in the road.  You will easily be able to see the brake lights but your reaction time will be around  5 – 10 seconds.  So from the moment your eyes see the two red lights, your brain and nervous system need 0.5 second to register the information and then tell your right leg to press the brake pedal.  Or if you are driving at 60 kph per hour (16.6 metres a second), 5 or 6 metres behind the car in front, at the same speed after having braked, you will continue on at 8.30 metres in 0.5 of a second.  Even if you push the brake immediately you will not be able to avoid the inevitable accident.


Keep your distance: typically by the length of your vehicle, 20 kpm an hour, two lengths at 40 kpm and three at 60 kph etc.  Above 100 kph and especially on a road prone to slipping, it would be safer to leave a space equal of around 100 metres between your vehicle and the one in front.


This is a reminder that this is what French drivers were told circa 1960s (Guide de la Route – L’art de bien conduire), still as relevant but still as ignored today.



Foire Aux Vins Réservez la Date 2014 aude 


 lenetwork  Joinery 2








I’m getting an increasing number of calls from expats, based here in France, who are very worried and sometimes, completely dismayed by the financial advice they have received elsewhere.  Worried by the fact that their investments have decreased in value, and dismayed when they realise that they cannot even withdraw their money or cancel their polices, as parts of the investment are now in funds that have been suspended (that is no-one can either buy them or sell them).


Now I’m not looking to get into any legal wrangle with the company concerned, and it is only one company, but I think this is a suitable time to flag up what is happening in the hope that some of you will avoid falling into this situation in future.  I will also add that I am prepared to ‘adopt’ clients in this situation, in order to ensure as fruitful an outcome for the client as possible.



What is happening is not illegal, but it could certainly be regarded as unethical.  The clients concerned have either unwittingly or deliberately chosen to put their faith in an adviser who is not regulated in France.  This is not illegal, because we are all part of the wonderful organisation that is Europe, and that frees Europeans to ply their trade in other countries within the Euro block.  That freedom of trade is not, however, backed up by a freedom of regulation.  If you live in France and have cause to complain about advice you have received, the French regulator will show no interest in your case if the adviser is not in his jurisdiction.  You will be guided to seek help from the regulator in the country where the adviser is based, and hopefully regulated.  Good luck.


There are two main problems that I am seeing at present.  The first relates to the quality of funds in which the clients are invested.  At The Spectrum IFA Group we have an investment team that spend many hours evaluating hundreds, if not thousands, of funds and produce a recommended list for clients to invest in.  There are of course hundreds of thousands of funds available, and we can’t look at them all, so we do allow our clients to choose their own investments if they wish, thereby ignoring our recommendations.  All we ask in this instance, is that you sign a form to accept that the investment was your choice.  There are many good funds out there, but there are also some bad ones.  All of the (now) clients who have suffered in this way have been put into a single asset class which has had a disastrous time in the past eighteen months.  Needless to say, none of the funds involved are on our recommended list.


The second issue centres on a specific type of investment called a structured note.  These are often complex derivative products, and the type of note that I am now seeing regularly, certainly falls into that category.  So much so, that the product notes that accompany the investment clearly state that this is only for seasoned professional investors, who are willing to accept the potential for serious loss of capital.  None of the people I’m taking to fall into that category.  The structured note is an interesting concept, and not all of them are overly complicated.  You may have seen me write about such a note in the past, and you may have seen such a product at our seminars, offering an excellent 12 month fixed deposit rate alongside a five year deposit where the reward is linked to the performance of the stock exchange index.  Not exactly ‘Janet and John’ stuff, but I like to think that I can explain it completely to my clients.  And I don’t use it unless I’m completely sure that the client also understands it.  I don’t understand the notes I’m seeing recently, and I’m sure the client doesn’t either.


So why sell them?  Simply because the companies that make up these products factor in an element of commission to the brokerage that sells the note to the end user, the client.  Now I don’t know how closely you look at small print when you read articles from me or Daphne, but if you look at the bottom of this article you will see reference to our client charter at


If you have read the charter, or are just about to do so, you will see or have seen this:


Some investment funds or products within an Insurance policy may generate an additional initial commission. If this is the case, we undertake to rebate this commission to you (in full) by way of increased allocation.


Strangely (not), none of the new clients I’m speaking to seem to have benefitted from this principle. It seems clear to me that funds are being pedalled for the advisers benefit, not the clients.  This is a very dangerous practice.


I must stress that no laws have been broken here, and no fraud has taken place.  I sell a simple structured note, but I pass on the commission.  I even have clients who are invested in the struggling asset class that we have been talking about, but only by their own choice, and for many months now that has been contra to our advice.


Be safe – use locally produced goods, and that includes financial advice.


If you have any questions on this, or any other subject, please don’t hesitate to contact me, Rob Hesketh:

By phone on 0468 247758 or mobile 0631 787647


Or by mail at   You can find out more about Spectrum at  and



The Spectrum IFA Group advisers do not charge any fees for their time or for advice given, as can be seen from our Client Charter at





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You are in four hearts and they lead the Queen of diamonds. What is your best line?





Q 10 9

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Your Hand

4 3

A K J 8 7 6

A 3 2






If the club finesse works, a 50/50 shot, you are home but there is a better line for clubs 4/2. Win the lead and play the Ace then the Queen of clubs. The defence will take their diamonds then probably play a spade. Win the Ace and ruff a club high. If all follow, draw trumps ending in Dummy and enjoy the club suit. If not, cross back to dummy and ruff another club high and use your trumps to get back to Dummy to enjoy the established club.



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Why do people go to gyms / exercise classes? Well, part of the reason may well be for the social interaction that occurs but for the vast majority, the main reason is to 'get fitter' / 'lose weight'.

The reason for the very existence of gyms et al  is to offer an artificial means of keeping our bodies moving, 60 years or so ago gyms didn't exist - why not? For the simple reason that we didn't really NEED them then - people walked as a means of getting from A to B, work was more generally manual, there were no home computers, television was still a relative luxury - we MOVED as a matter of course.


Dr. James Levine, a nutritionist, an endocrinologist and a professor of medicine has spent years researching alternative ways to lose weight other than 'exercise' - and it turns out that we just need to go back to basics!


What exactly IS Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (NEAT)?

Levine has defined the term as "the energy expenditure associated with all the activities we undertake as vibrant, independent beings." Those activities include "occupation, leisure, standing, walking, toe-tapping, guitar playing, dancing and shopping,"


Levine and his team of scientists have uncovered a striking difference in activity (not 'exercise') levels between lean people and overweight ones. Their study measured - with the help of sensors - how much people moved about naturally and spontaneously.

The heavier ones tended to sit, while the lean ones were more restless and spent two more hours a day on their feet - standing, pacing around and fidgeting. The difference translated into 350 calories a day, enough for the heavy people to take off 30 to 40 pounds a year, if they would get moving.

Non-exercise activity can account for a significant portion of the calories burned in a day, anywhere from 15 percent in a sedentary person to 50 percent in someone who is very active. Standing takes more energy than sitting, and strolling along at just one mile an hour burns twice the calories of sitting.

Levine advocates this approach because the usual weight loss remedies usually fail. People have a hard time sticking with exercise programs and diets, and Dr. Levine argues that the very number of diet books and weight-loss plans is proof in and of itself that none of them work. "If one worked, we'd all be following it," he said.

Activity levels have declined, and he and many other obesity researchers say that decline, more than increases in eating, is to blame for rises in obesity.

The bottom line (!) is that as a species, humans are designed to move and we function optimally when we move regularly - it's when we DON'T move that things can start to get out of kilter in our bodies, one of the most obvious being that we don't burn as many calories as we need to (and this can often start a whole cascade of related problems such as diabetes, joint problems, heart disease etc. etc. - we've heard it all a million times before!).


It often gives shocking results, but here's a really interesting thing to do  - work out how many hours per day you spend sitting or inactive (sleeping - necessary!, driving, sitting in front of the computer, television, reading, eating). Work out ways that you can gradually increase the amount that you MOVE -  for example, don't sit for longer than half an hour at a time without getting up and moving around a bit, stand up for a while to watch the television (hard to do because postural muscles burn a lot of energy and it's surprisingly tiring!), stand when you don't need to sit (taking / making a telephone call for example), walk more - NEVER use an lift, escalator or those moving belts at airports, they are all robbing your body of the chance to move!

Even if you do an hour's exercise class regularly, it does your body no good whatsoever if you then remain inactive for the other 23 hours!


CONSIDER what you do on daily basis, get back to basics a bit and your body will  love you!


Pat Penny

Massage Therapist

Heath and Fitness Specialist

meteo ciel3














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If you have not yet planted your spring flowering bulbs now is the time to do so; anemones de Caen, muscari, Narcissus tazetta forms, Narcissus actea, many species tulps, Star of Bethlehem ...  these and many other bulbs are native to summer dry climate regions and do very well in Languedoc gardens since they are dormant during the canicule.  This is a good time too for taking cuttings, especially of plants which are not reliably frost hardy such as pelargoniums ("geraniums") and some sages.  Young cuttings can be overwintered in a greenhouse, conservatory or in a cool room.

Now is the flowering time for autumn bulbs.  Cyclamen hederifolium is a charming little perennial growing to about 10cm high, it has ivy-shaped leaves patterned with silvery-green, and (usually) pink, sometimes fragrant, flowers in the autumn.  It's natural distribution stretches from southeastern France, through Italy, Corsica, Sardinia, Sicily, Croatia, Bosnia, Serbia, Albania, Bulgaria, Greece  and western Turkey. It inhabits woodland, garigue, maquis, scrub, and rocky hillsides.  There are many other cyclamen and if you are interested in finding out more then the Cyclamen Society of Great Britain is the place to go, their website is    Sternbergia lutea is often, wrongly referred to as an autumn crocus, it makes a clump-forming bulbous perennial to 15cm in height, with narrow, dark green leaves and solitary deep yellow, goblet-shaped flowers in September and October, it comes from the Mediterranean region too.  Both plants are well suited for gardens here. 


Regular opening times at La Petite Pépinière are limited to just to one weekend a month but the garden is always open by appointment - just email or phone to organise a time.  We encourage people to visit the garden to look rather than to buy!   Regular opening times for the rest of this year will be  10th, 11th & 12th October and 7th, 8th & 9th November.  Our autumn sale day will be Saturday the 15th November.  Remember too that we are always happy to organise guided visits of the garden here for groups.

For any garden queries do get in touch with Gill Pound ( 04 68 78 43 81 or ). La Petite Pépinière de Caunes 21, av de la Montagne Noire (route de Citou) 11160 Caunes-Minervois.

La Petite Pépinière de Caunes
21, av de la Montagne Noire,
11160 Caunes-Minervois
04 68 78 43 81


















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Period house in a beautiful Razes circulade village.  This renovated but unspoilt house is over 200 years old and has far reaching views of countryside, hills and mountains from almost every room, and a stunning roof terrace.  There are 3 double bedrooms, large lounge, separate dining room and kitchen.  There is also a very large walk-thru cellar.  The house retains many period features including a beautiful oak staircase.  

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 readers write



all replies to please


Och Aye! The sad fact is the 'Independence issue' has been stirred up by a power-hungry self-promoting oleaginous smooth talking snake-oil salesman who sees himself as a latter day Rob Roy who has demonstrated he has not the slightest grasp of how economics work.... Alex Salmond has whipped up such venom & hatred among those who are easily swayed and unfortunately through no fault of their own are not very well informed. The regrettable thing is that he has put his case far better than Clan Cameron/Darling. Westminster is by no means perfect in its’ deliberations in history (Ireland included) and has made many mistakes in its’ past. But that will be as nothing compared to what the poor Scots will suffer if they vote Yes. Whatever the result, the legacy will be that 49% of Scots will forever hate the other 51%...!


Kind regards,





Hi Steve

Are Ryanair trying a new way of generating revenue ?

Having booked our latest flight out of Stanstead, a few weeks ago and decided not to pay extra for a selected seat, we were expecting

the normal E mail reminder from Ryanair to print out our tickets, which has never arrived.  We  were within two days of travelling and went onto the Ryanair webb site to print out the tickets to

learn we could print out the outward tickets, with random selected seats at no extra cost. However, we could not print out the return tickets, as we were more then seven days away

from the return date (we have a ten day trip), although as we were within 30 days of the return date we could at extra cost book return seats and print off the return tickets.

Not having easy access to a printer whilst away, we opted to purchase the cheapest selected seats, which allowed us to print off the return tickets.

Is this an additional charge that cannot be avoided easily ? or a cynical way of catching people to print off there tickets at the airport at a grossly inflated charge ?

It would be interesting to learn of other peoples current experiences.








Hi Steve

Your computer column in the last Flyer claims:

"This browser alternative has been around for a long time, its used to be the fastest browser and much safe then Internet explorer or Firefox but it has lost its way over the years. The real downside for me is that the free version is Ad supported meaning part of the page/toolbar area is taken up by an advert. And why pay for a browser when Google Chrome is 100% free and so good."


I was disappointed to see Opera lumped in with spyware and adware. Funnily enough, I was reading the Flyer in Opera, which is free. Not an ad to be seen (except in the Flyer of course!). The information given is years out of date. Opera is now based on the Chromium engine. That's, ahem, what drives Google Chrome. Except Opera is faster and less crash-prone on my Mac than Chrome is, so I won't be removing it anytime soon.


Best regards



Hi Steve


Opera is not a nice browser, my information about it being add supported/sponsored comes from the Opera web site.  


It’s a good idea to read the terms or service: clip of license below


Data about the features (not websites) used in the Software is collected with the purpose to improve the Software and Services. The Software also creates a unique ID that is linked to your computer. This unique ID is processed with the sole purpose to measure marketing campaigns and distribution partners. Any crash logs sent by the Software will include the version number of the Software and information about the operating system. This information is collected with the sole purpose to improve the Software or the Services. Opera’s privacy policy located at (“Privacy Policy”) is incorporated by reference.


7.2 Opera Turbo is a web browsing service relying on web content being compressed on Opera proxy and video compression servers and then sent to the Software installed on your device.


the service collects the web addresses (not content of the webpages), IP-addresses, the end-user device make and model, and a randomly generated identifier for the Software. Opera stores and processes usage related log data to provide, debug, maintain and optimize the service. Opera server logs are kept for up to six months. Usage related log data are also used to generate aggregated and anonymized statistics for Opera’s own use, and for reporting usage to Opera’s customers.


The 1st page that Opera start is the Speed dial page where you will see 7 or 8 adverts from companies PAYING Opera.


operabruce stuff


Opera may like you to believe its the same engine as the Chrome browser but this is simply not true, google may use the chromium engine but in a very different way from Opera. Both companies take the basic chromium engine software and then totally rewrite it for their own use.


I use Opera to test web sites and compatibility with web site so I have seen it latest versions, I still do not like it. It has great problems displaying some sites, especially secure sites like banks, card payment screens etc. and often just shows a blank white page.


Apples Safari browser is also using the Chromium engine, if you have a Mac then make 100% sure you have the latest version of OSX 10.9.5 and soon to be 10.10 otherwise your computer is a risk of infection. Anything earlier than 10.9 should be upgraded to 10.9 as soon as possible or not connected to the internet.




Best regards,




Tel: 05 61 60 84 23

(If I cannot answer Please leave a message and I will call you back).


Bruce Taylor Pro Computer Support





Some vide greniers and foires!
Please check before setting off
They also have a sister site where you can giveaway stuff or find stuff others are giving
Its all recycling - you know it makes sense!
If there are two in the same town on the same day, it could be a duplicate on the site or a second event
Black = Aude - Brown = Ariege

Samedi 4 Octobre 2014

Bugarach Vide grenier des écoles, Course des cîmes

Coursan vide grenier

Pieusse vide grenier au profit de "Courir pour Curie"

Port Leucate vide greniers

Saverdun vide greniers +brocante

Dimanche 5 Octobre 2014

Armissan foire des vendanges

Arzens Vide-grenier d'Automne du Comité des Fêtes d'Arzens

Badens 14° Vide-greniers du service jeunesse -section jeune FRB

Carcassonne Vide grenier brocante

Coursan vide grenier

Coursan Vide grenier d'Automne

Coustaussa Vide grenier

Cuxac-Cabardès vide dressing

Fontcouverte Vide grenier

La Redorte vide grenier

Laure-Minervois vide grenier

Leucate  Vide grenier du rugby

Limoux La mensuelle le 1er dimanche de chaque mois

Montréal Vide-greniers / Marché artisanal

Montréal vide grenier des Majorettes

Moussoulens vide grenier

Narbonne Vide Grenier Calandreta

Narbonne-Plage Vide grenier

Pennautier Bourse aux vêtements

Pezens vide grenier

Plavilla Vide greniers et brocante

Saint-Couat-d'Aude vide grenier

Saint-Marcel sur Aude vide grenier au profit du téléthon

Bompas vide grenier

Foix Vide grenier pompiers de foix

Lordat Vide greniers

Mazères vide grenier mensuel

Montgaillard vide grenier des Restos

Nalzen vide grenier

Pamiers Marché et puces et à la brocantes

Saint-Lizier marché aux Puces, de la cave au grenier

Saint-Quentin-la-Tour vide grenier

Sainte-Suzanne Vide-grenier sainte-suzanne

Saverdun vide grenier quartier de meras à saverdun



Vendredi 10 Octobre 2014

Salles-sur-l'Hers bourse aux vetements et matériel de puériculture

Samedi 11 Octobre 2014

Coursan  vide grenier

Laurabuc Vide greniers

Pieusse vide dressing

Quillan Vide grenier du comité des Fêtes Roger Salengro

Salles-sur-l'Hers bourse aux vetements et matériel de puériculture

Mirepoix Bourse aux skis

Saverdun vide greniers +brocante

Dimanche 12 Octobre 2014

Azille vide-grenier

Bize-Minervois Méga Vide Grenier "Fitiavana Madagascar"

Bram vide grenier des familles rurales de bram

Canet bourse aux jouets

Carcassonne Vide grenier brocante

Couiza  Vide grenier des écoles et bourse aux pièces automobiles

Coursan vide grenier

Coursan vide grenier asipe

Fabrezan Vide greniers

Ginestas mega vide grenier

Luc-sur-Orbieu  Vide Greniers

Moussoulens vide grenier

Narbonne vide grenier d'automne

Ouveillan foire aux rougnes des vendanges

Portel-des-Corbières vide grenier asp gym

Rieux-Minervois vide grenier

Salles-sur-l'Hers bourse aux vetements et matériel de puériculture

Sigean vide grenier, bourse au jouets

Villasavary Vide grenier et bourse aux jouets

Laroque-d'Olmes Vide grenier du comite des fetes

Lavelanet vide jardin

Mirepoix Bourse aux skis

Mirepoix Vide-greniers Animat'hon Mirepoix

Montgailhard  Vide poussette

Pamiers Marché et puces et à la brocantes


Saurat 2ème puces des Couturières et des Loisirs Créatifs



 What's On





PHARRELL WILLIAMS 6 Oct Zenith Toulouse

LILY ALLEN 29 Oct Zenith Toulouse

IMELDA MAY 3 Nov Bikini Toulouse

ULI JON ROTH 4 Nov Bikini Toulouse

THE DO 9 Nov Bikini Toulouse





PINK MARTINI 10 Nov Halle aux grains Toulouse

GONG 14 Nov Metronum Toulouse

PETER GABRIEL 16 Nov Zenith Toulouse

SAXON +SKID ROW 26 Nov Bikini Toulouse

ANGUS & JULIA STONE 7 Dec Bikini Toulouse

DISNEY ON ICE 30 Jan 1 Feb Zenith Toulouse

DIRTY DANCING 1/3 May Zenith Toulouse


 10670010 814193018620993 8927290190699865358 n  10675697 10152352930076074 7854616105272140748 n

















The following prices are for one insertion in the Flyer email news letter unless otherwise stated




Give away items


1 image and 25 words, plus contact details

All items for sale inc Motor vehicles, boats, caravans & trailers

25 €

1 image and 25 words, plus contact details in 3 editions




Property for sale - land, houses, businesses

50 €

up to 8 images and 500 words, plus contact details - your own property web page linked to the "Property Page" section of the Flyer for 13 editions

Large Display Advert - Corporate


Finished artwork to be 756 pixels by 200 pixels landscape or 378 pixels by 400 pixels portrait

Standard Display Advert - Corporate


Finished artwork to be 378 pixels by 200 pixels landscape

Large Display Advert - Small Companies and Sole Traders (at my discretion)


Finished artwork to be 756 pixels by 200 pixels landscape or 378 pixels by 400 pixels portrait

Standard Display Advert - Small Companies and Sole Traders (at my discretion)

25 €

Finished artwork to be 378 pixels by 200 pixels landscape

What's on feature advert

35 €

Finished artwork to be 378 pixels by 515 pixels portrait

information about advertising rates and specifications.
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Send details to of your advert to Steve Hedges.
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Finished adverts should be submitted in jpeg format 378 pixels wide

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