My first HelpX experience

Putting fingers to keyboard

I will usually blog at the end of each place I visit, at the moment I’m spending a month at a time with hosts but this is likely to change so I may blog more often then, just need some internet access! I will be updating my travel pictures and my twitter more often as you’ve probably seen.

My first HelpX host

Back of the house on a lovely day

This month has been an amazing experience for me here at the home of Debs and Keith in Gondrin, Southern France. For exchange for a small amount of labour such as painting and general renovation around the house I’ve been treated to some things I’ll never forget.

No more SPAM for me!

Debs and Keith enjoying lunch

Keith and Debs are brilliant cooks and have truly inspired me to do more cooking. I have learnt some great new recipes and tried so many new foods I thought I’d only be eating in high end restaurants. From collecting oysters from the local markets for lunch to eating wild deer from the nearby woods, the whole food experience has been an absolute delight. I will be posting some recipes on my blog for you guys to try!

Rural France… sounds boring!

Chilling in the hammock overlooking the beautiful countryside

Only a boring person could get bored around here. The place is out of the way in the middle of no-where but this brings the place into its own. Walking, cycling, running; however you decide to explore the local villages you will not be disappointed by the beauty of the countryside and the interesting stone houses built out of local stone. I sound like a travel guide now but it’s so true!

Stop talking like a travel guide and tell me what you’ve done

The beast

I’ve had the chance to do some fishing with Keith’s old fishing rods on the nearby river and local farm pond; I’ve been mushroom hunting and managed to help collect some wild mushrooms which we made a delicious risotto with; I’ve played boules with Keith’s friends whom included the drummer Boris Williams from one of my favourite bands – The Cure; I’ve learnt some French from Michel Thomas; I’ve sat at night looking at the stars lighting up the whole sky with the sound of Wild Boar rummaging through the field outside; I’ve had long relaxing sessions in the hammock overlooking the countryside; I’ve learnt how to play a bit of guitar, wrote my own lyrics, and sang a song for Debs and Keith; I’ve done some magic tricks at the table, had some great conversations and met some great friends here.

It’s been truly an amazing first stop and I’m so lucky to have had such a great start on my adventure.

Bye countryside, Hello mountains!

Beautiful sky on the last day in the Gers

Keith and Debs put me in touch with a friend in the Pyrenees mountains, I’ve contacted her and secured a place for over Christmas, it’s going to be the perfect place to spend Christmas and I’ll have the opportunity to do some skiing which I’ve not done before. I feel like the luckiest person in the world at the moment.

Until next time guys, peace and love, Jonathan x

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15 Responses

  1. chris says:

    Hi Jon,

    Sounds like you’re having a great time and Christmas in the mountains will be amazing, be careful on those ski slopes though! Oysters for lunch, you’ve changed! I remember when you used to eat cold beans and spam!


  2. Robert says:

    Sound amazing your story, you still giving me more energy to follow your steps. I´d like go around the world and your advice realy help beat fear of the unknow. I am happy that i had chance to know you. I´ll checkin your blog. You doing right thing, good luck a have a nice Christmas:)

    • Robert says:

      and the song wow!! i love it

      • Jonathan says:

        Hi Robert,

        Really nice to hear from you my friend. Thanks for the kind words. I need to upload the full song, that was only half of it! Hope you keep checking my blog and I know you will have a good party at Christmas, enjoy yourself!

  3. Kerwin says:

    Hi Jonathan, looks like you’re having an amazing time so far! Have you been skiing yet? It’s been raining every day for a while now so I’ve not been fishing for a bit.
    By the way I’ve bought a new domain. I’ve done my research this time lol

    • Jonathan says:

      Hey Kerwin, yeah I’ve done some skiing now and it’s going really well, picked it up fast! glad your doing well with your websites – good work bro!

  4. Dazza says:

    ” I’ve played boules with Keith’s friends whom included the drummer Boris Williams from one of my favourite bands – The Cure”

    Love it!

  5. Agustina says:

    Hello there!!!!!

    Im totally crazy for your experiences! im from Argentina and im going to europe the next year and i want to do helpx!! Plis i will love if you can introduce me with this amazin host families!!

  6. Haley says:

    Hello i am graduating high school at the moment and have been interested in going to Europe through helpx. Sounds like you are having an amazing experience, is there any advice you can offer?

    • Jonathan says:

      My advice would be to not worry so much about arranging the whole trip from the outset. Arrange the first place and then look for your next place from there 🙂 The best way to HelpX! If you like a place you can stay longer and if you don’t like a place you can leave immediately 🙂 Have fun!

  1. August 18, 2012

    […] about people’s experience with HelpX and they were almost always positive. (For example: Jonathan, Rhianonabike and Michelle.) I’m a naturally suspicious person and found Helpx too good to […]

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