I know I am living in a gorgeous, unspoiled part of France. Often I think Aveyron has got to be one of the greatest parts of the country. Yet, as you know, I am drawn to big cities and frequently have the sneaking suspicion that there is a whole French world out there that I'm not experiencing.
Now I know why. According to a major study just released by L'Express magazine, Aveyron is indeed the best department to live in in France -- for senior citizens! Overall, we come in 26th, which is pretty respectable, but I can take comfort in knowing the situation will improve with each passing year of my life.
So why is Aveyron so great for the elderly? Take a look at the chart that ranks the department (out of 95) on different criteria:
Rankings for Aveyron
Coût du logement (Price of housing) 21
Dynamisme économique 44
Enseignement supérieur (higher education) 77
Météo (weather) 26
Offre de soins (available medical care) 80
Puissance économique (economic strength) 74
Réussite au bac (success rate in the Baccalauréat exam) 18
Situation sociale 2
Santé des habitants (Residents' health) 1
So despite medical offerings towards the bottom of the list, Aveyron's residents are the healthiest in France. We live in a "secure" atmosphere -- read little crime -- and have an excellent "social situation", whatever that means -- I won't even attempt a translation! And the department is green and clean.
If only I were 75 years old, I could appreciate all of this more fully!
(If you live in France, you may enjoy checking out how your department ranks by clicking here.)