Wednesday, December 16, 2009

The year that was...2009!

The year 2009 began on a pleasant note as we just got back from a fantastic holiday in Italy and we learnt that we would soon be living in Paris! By God's grace, the year was phenomenal with major changes; interesting learnings on the way and a subtle maturity in me! :P

The move to Paris was a major decision indeed. It meant uprooting ourselves from familiar surroundings and our own lovely home. But it was a fantastic opportunity for S and an exciting option to live in the most romantic and exotic city in the world!

Initially, the new surroudings, new home, the people and their language seemed daunting. We have slowly settled down into our Parisian home, made some great friends and we feel at 'home' now! Yet, there is a lot of scope for improvement in French! :-)

When I was skeptical about moving to a new country as it meant moving from familiar surroundings, friends and family and most importantly, quitting my job (mine), my mom said something that really convinced me. Lots of people crave for change as the routine seems mundane and boring. So when you get a chance to explore, travel and move ahead; you must grab the chance! Why do you want to stick to the routine? That convinced me totally! 2009 is also my first year without a regular job. I have been freelancing on and off as we travel very often whenever we can. It has taken a lot of time to get used to the fact that I don't get a salary at the end of every month. When I had a regular job, I longed for a break and now when I am taking a break, I want a regular job! Such is LIFE :-)

I do make sincere efforts to find a relevant job here. But its difficult to find any job here if you don't speak French, the key being fluent french. I thought it would be really easy to find a job here. After the initial disappointment, I found some really interesting freelance work and worked on varied writing projects. It is like running my own business and there are dry periods too! I have learnt to be tough and direct with freelancing! That's a first! :-

One day ( yes, I make up my mind in an instant and that's it - I have!), I just made up my mind to enjoy my break and do things I didn't find time to do earlier and I am loving the person I am now! On most days, I am happy and cheerful from all the wonderful music I listen to. I have renewed my reading habit and read a lot of books (thanks to the American Library). I exercise regularly, alternating between Yoga, Pilates and floor exercises which has really improved my overall health and stamina. I dabble in glass painting and gardening when I feel like it. I go out with friends and explore Paris as much as I can. Of course, there is a lot of household chores to do as I don't have any domestic help here which is therapeutic(sometimes!). So there is always so much to do and my days are happy and full. Is'nt that what matters?

Thanks to the internet and Skype, I have not missed my folks or friends at all. I speak to my parents almost everyday just like I did in India. :-) What would I do without the internet? I am known to be really cranky and upset if the connection goes off here for some reason! I have made some really good friends here and I am so glad I have close friends in every city and country now!

Saving the best for the last! The best part of this year has been all the travelling. We have been to 6 countries in this year alone! We have always made an effort to travel as much as we can even when we were in India. Now that we are in a more convenient location in terms of distance; we would like to travel all over Europe.

Someone has aptly said that one’s destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things.
You learn and unlearn so many things in life; as you explore different places, cultures, people, cuisines, nature. It is a beautiful experience that needs to be felt; not described. I am in love with travel. PERIOD. I am aware that you also need twice the money. We try and save a little amount every month before we plan a trip. That way it does not pinch too much all too suddenly.

So we have saved enough to spend Christmas and New Year's in GREECE!!!!!! We will spend about 10 days in different islands and I am sooooo looking forward to it. Its a double bonanza that after we get back, in another 2 weeks, we are off to INDIA!!!! Here's wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a fantatic new year. I send a little prayer to God to bless us all with loads of love, happiness and prosperity in 2010 and thank him for the lovely and happening year that was... See you guys next year!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Colorful entrance!

Its cold and the winter has come with a bang! ...and I am always in need of scarves and stoles as I rush out somewhere! I hit upon this idea to hang all the colorful ones on the door. Its not only accessible now, its also very colorful , cheerful and pretty!

Its so much easier to make a choice too! :-)