France apparently has a program by which urbanites are paid (modestly) to go to the countryside and convert rundown farm houses into rural inns. Sounds like a win-win: the Parisians get to experience country life and get their hands a bit dirty while the beauty of rural life is preserved even as people leave the farm. Clever.
And let me take this opportunity to salute the article's author, Enik Rising regular reader Marc Herman, who managed to finance a bike ride through France by selling the story to the Atlantic. Even more clever.