Goodbye Paris, Hello Dubai (for now)

Since I last wrote, a lot has happened.  The lawyer confirmed my file has been officially submitted to the French authorities.  This means it is only a matter of time before this “soon to be expat in Paris” becomes a real expat.  For now, I am back home in Dubai after an intense two weeks in Paris.  I feel the need to apologize for my prolonged absence although my followers are so few…i have so much to learn in this land of blogging!  Before I go on, I want to say thank-you to those few who are following my amateur blog and for making me feel like someone reads my words…

For the updates…

Paris was a whirlwind in every meaning of the word.  The Paris I knew and loved as a tourist is not the same Paris I experienced this time around.  That was probably the biggest discovery for me.  I tend to get consumed with the whimsical fantasies in my head…cobbled streets, adorable patisseries and cute French dresses however the reality is cold and hard.  My handover period at work was stressful to say the very least.  I am talking about 12-13 hour days, daily for two whole weeks.  (and I havent even officially started yet! yikes!)  It’s no wonder the French get so many holidays!  It’s compensated for with severe overtime!  Nonetheless, and despite the intensity and the feeling of not knowing anything the first week, I was welcomed kindly by my fellow team members, (including the pesky Parisians) and the wonderfully gay Arnaud with whom I will share an office.  He was a source of entertainment throughout!  My second week was a little easier although I was flying solo.  Still, not having to absorb information and to listen to someone describe foreign material for 12 hours straight was a very welcome break and gave me time to gather my thoughts and catch up on some reading.  Now that I am back in Dubai, I am convinced I am making the right move.  Although these two weeks in Paris were not easy, I know my time in the Dubai office is over.  I am counting down the days to freedom… and to a new life.  There is something exhilarating (and frightening) about not knowing what is coming and the feeling that I am turning over a new leaf makes me giddy with excitement and hopeful for so many life changes I want to implement (more on that later!)

I wanted to share some of my photos from my second weekend in Paris.  I was so lucky that N was able to fly back to keep me company otherwise i would have been lonely all on my own.  We were luckier with the weather than my experience the week before his arrival.  Although we had the occasional rain shower, it was sunny for the most part and really beautiful.  On Saturday the 14th of july we made our way to Les Invalides to witness the military spectacle that is basically a “show-all” of France’s military, naval and air strength.  As hard as we tried to get to the Champs Elysee for the parade, all metro lines and routes leading there had been closed off.  Still, it was exciting to see all the huge artillery and the uniformed men and women stationed around the city, happily posing with us.  Although we got to see tanks and helicopters, I was bummed that we had missed the fighter jets, a particular love of mine.  There is something about the speed and power of those things (and maybe the movie Pearl Harbor with Ben Affleck and Josh Hartnett)  that makes me wish I could fly one!

We spent the rest of the day in the sunshine and headed down to the 5eme which is my favorite area.  The objective was to find the lock we had placed last May on our special Bridge of Locks (also known as Pont de l’Archeveche).  Unfortunately we were not able to find it and so began N’s insistence to make sure the next one is HUGE, identifiable and strategically placed.  I secretly enjoyed his obsession with finding it and his disappointment with not.  It’s so cute to see a guy care about something so frivolous because to the world it is but the truth is, to us it is not.  That lock was the start of something magical….

This is one of my favorite spots and views in Paris,.  Every time I stand here I want to freeze the moment in time.


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