First of all, I would love to thank for all these kind messages I received from you, people I know and I do not know in person, those looking for my old blog posts and others saying they’re waiting for new articles or just asking if we’re fine, it’s the most beautiful reward and it gave me a boost to carry on. I am back and I hope it is for good. I did not plan any break really but the hustle and bustle of our new daily routine in Paris did not let me do what I love to do. I wish to change that and also announce that I’m embarking on a new, exciting adventure in June!
So what happened in 2016?
Well, a lot occurred. The biggest thing was our decision to move back to Paris from Rome where we were living since 2015. The Eternal City still remains my favorite place in the world but it did not offer any interesting career opportunities for any of us. In spite of that, Sébastien was teaching at a Paris university for a few months, traveling regularly from Rome, and I ended up doing an internship at the United Nations, learning Italian, Persian and practicing kung-fu. We did not manage to find any permanent job though.
I must say that I learnt a great deal of things during that year in Italy and it did us good really. We were so happy to live in the heart of Rome, to come across amazingly kind people, take Italian classes at the beautiful Dante Alighieri School, eat and cook great food, make so many weekend journeys and bigger trips. I learnt to find great pleasure in simple things and everyday life, in walking around our downtown early in the morning and chatting to strangers while sipping my cappuccino at the counter.
Is there any other place on earth with the similar quality of life? Where you just hop on a train when you feel low and within 1h may find yourself in the mountains, on the seaside or in the hilly countryside inscribed on UNESCO list? Where you’ll always find your own sunny place? There is something about Italy I can’t explain, something that makes me feel alive. I know many Italians do not share my opinion about Rome, they complain so much about the city but I believe your attitude is the key, they say it determines your altitude.
We left our lovely Roman apartment in May, no need to explain how I tried to make the most of the city before coming back to France. Rome is the most beautiful in Spring and that last March, April and May were amazing. I’ve already mentioned it here.
In July we moved back to Paris, to my favorite district of Batignolles. Sébastien found a good job quickly enough, I took up a second master’s, and I’m still studying Persian, I am really into it. It’s somewhat intense, the reason why we had to slow down and limit our travel plans. In January, I managed to pass all my exams with good results, I tried all out!
Nevertheless, we’ve visited a couple of interesting places in 2016. In January, we went back to Pisa and Florence, then fell in love with Lucca. We road tripped in Northern Greece in February, hiked around the Amalfi Coast and visited the abandoned villages in Abruzzo in April. In June we flew to Sicily for a week, I went to Brussels, then to Poland and Prague in September, then came back to Italy once again in October to celebrate Sébastien’s birthday at Lake Como. In November we spent a weekend with friends in French Camargue. It’s certainly not as much as in the previous years but some big things are coming soon.
And what’s next?
We’re making a trip back to Italy in April, will pay a visit to our friends in Rome and spend a couple of days on Capri near Naples. I’ll finish my master’s in May then travel to Tehran in June where I’ll be doing an internship during Summer, and try to improve my Persian language skills. We’ll certainly go on a long journey around Iran with Sébastien at the end of my stay and we will be back in Paris in late September. I am deeply fascinated and intrigued by Iran, that travel is going to be a dream come true. We’ll certainly go on weekend trips for the rest of the year.
All in all, we’re fine, enjoying our everyday life here and staying optimistic, still thinking about moving back to Italy someday. I cook Italian, read graphic novels and go to the movies at least once a week. It’s good to have our close friends around and see them so often. However, I’m very much looking forward to Spring and our trip in April. In the meantime, I have some nice, shiny photos to share so stay tuned, I’ll write again soon ;)
Villa Doria Pamphili, Rome
Moving out, Rome
Amalfi Coast, Italy
Prague, Czech Republic
Lake Como, Italy
Current home, Paris