Monday, February 28, 2011

Moving to Paris FAQs

Otherwise known as: When the heck are you leaving??

1. It's a good thing Paris is so gosh darn magical and amazing.
2. It's a good thing I'm not a control freak.

Allow me to explain in a standard Q&A format.

Q. When are you leaving?
A. No idea. Sometime within the next week, I hope.

Q. What's the hold up??
A. The French government.  Oh how wonderful it is.  The French Consulate in Houston has my passport, and they've been waiting for the paperwork from Paris to process my work visa, put it in my passport, and overnight my passport back to me. They've lost the visa paperwork twice so far.  But supposedly they have it today, so now it's just the waiting game for them to process it and mail it to me.

Q. I thought you were leaving tomorrow/last week/two weeks ago/a month ago?
A. Ah, yes. Me, too. Yet here I am. I will have booked 5 flights by the time I actually get to leave for Paris!

Flight #1: Jan. 31st
Flight #2: Feb 21st
Flight #3: March 1st
Flight #4: March 8th
Flight #5: TBD. I will move my flight to the day after my passport arrives in the mail. Sometime this week, I hope.

Q. Are you all packed?
A. No, not really. I don't want to put all my clothes in until right before I leave so everything isn't all wrinkled from sitting in there for a week.  I envision it going something like this: Receive passport, book flight for next day, spend all day/night packing, get on plane.

Q. Do you know where you're going to live?
A. In a hotel!! Yayyy. I will book a hotel room for a week and start apartment hunting when I get there.  I had hoped to have an apartment ready to move into, but that has not been as easy to find online as one would have hoped.

Q. Is it true you have had 14 goodbye lunches?
A. Pretty much.  I keep thinking I'm leaving, and then I'm still here.  It's hard to get any sort of closure with people when you're not sure if it's the last time you're ever going to see them again in your life...or if you will see them on Thursday.

So basically...I'm moving my whole life to Paris, but I don't know when I'm leaving, when I can start packing, when to actually say goodbye to my friends and family and be sad, where I'm living, what dates to book a hotel, or when I can look for apartments in Paris because I might start work the day I arrive.  This is kind of hilarious.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

The France Plan

So I’m moving to France.  I guess I still have to work.  (Most unfortunate).  I started calculating the costs of being on vacation for a year and half, and it did not end well.

One of the first things people ask me is, “What are you going to do there??”  So I thought that’d be a good starting point.  This is the tentative plan through 2012, but who knows! (“The mind of man plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.” Prov 16:9)

March-October 2011:
  • Work in the office of Fat Tire Bike Tours, a company that gives biking & walking tours of Paris.  It was started by an Aggie, and has an Aggie as the manager!  A little home sweet home.
  • Skip around Paris every day singing about the wonder that is Paris in falsetto
  • Eat incredible amounts of butter, cheese, bread, & pastries
  • Gain 10 pounds, freak out, start exercising more and lay off the butter.
  • More skipping, more singing.
October 2011-October 2012
  • Get a job as an au pair (nanny) where I pick up the kids from school around 4pm, cook dinner, put them to bed.  This provides a place to stay (living with the family), food to eat, and pocket money.
  • During the day, start working on a business idea (I have plans brewing) to keep me in France long term.
October 2012
  • Evaluate.  Do I like living in Paris?  Are my business ideas working out?  Do I stay another year or do I say, “Sacre Bleu, that was fun!” and head back to the states?
The truth is that this move could have me in Paris indefinitely, but for now, I’m committing to a year and a half, and then I'll reevaluate.  Feel free to pray for me, come visit, and/or send me work-out dvd’s.  I LOVE FRANCE!!!