Friday, October 7, 2016

I finished school!

This week I presented the memoir for my diploma. Not just any, but a diploma from a Business School in France. After one year of studying and so much work, I am done. All those weeks of preparation for the final presentation are behind me! I've made it.
Why school ?
I've been working in France since year one. On year 7 I decided I was going to get another diploma, this time a European one.Going to French Business School is another element. It would have not been possible during my first few years here. The good level of french is essential in order to take advantage of going through this process.My objective was to surprise myself that I could do it and succeed.
I prepared a year ahead in order to ask permissions from work, prepare scholarship documents and I was lucky I got over 95% of my studies paid for thanks to all the effort I put in. I used the FONGECIF and I am one of those that got accepted.
The Experience
School started and I met 12 great classmates. All from different backgrounds and various sectors of business. During the year we got to work together and share some very enriching moments behind all the work we put in for each project and case study. Colleagues became friends and classes became valuable experiences which allowed us to get inspired. Worthwhile moments in and out of class.
Inside class, I met several interesting teachers and learned a few things I am already using at work. And the vocabulary and terms ! I've got so much new stuff in this head of mine. Yep, I'm frenching it a bit more now!

With this chapter almost closed, I wish my colleagues all the success in their futures.

What other goals will be coming my way soon?

I leave you with this inspirational video. 

Happy Weekend everyone!

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Two homes separated by one ocean

How many people share the sentiment that there are two places to call home? Two very important places where you find yourself happy you're there yet so far apart and so different one from the other.

How many times we are caught referring of HOME yet we talk about two distinct places which are clearly located on different sides of the planet?

On the plane back home to Paris, I thought about that place where I am building a life and where someone who loves me dearly awaits for me. This other home is Paris. Yet, the last two weeks I spent home in the Caribbean where I go to feel whole and revitalize, the trip already seemed so far. The balance I've created to manage two sets of lives always seems to be in danger when I return to my Caribbean home. 

My voyage came and went like a wave which disappeared into the ocean, quickly, sweeping with it all my emotions of peace of being somewhere where the daily topic was not about refugees, terrorism and the European Union mess. Yes, it has its own set of problems but I felt they were not of the same gravity. They all seemed more manageable.

In my time home there were countless friends and family to visit, errands to do, bank appointments and somehow I got so many things done yet I wanted more. Being in my Caribbean home, in that small island was a cure to my soul. The cure was borderline addictive. When will I get to go back? Every time the return gets harder and harder. 

When I left New York for Paris years ago I had essentially already gone through the same prepping process of moving elsewhere although it was a city I loved and I enjoy visiting it was not a place I could call home.

What is curious is that home is not the same as when I left many years ago. Things have changed and I as well. Still, the things that remain, the friends who are making their lives there, my family and the possibility of me creating and living there is captivating to me.

Things change and plans transform as well. Maybe I will move back, one day, or not. Who knows? The unexpected in life is what keeps us curious to want to continue. The melody of change is never ending and unpredictable. 

"Patria son tantas cosas bellas"
- Ruben Blades

Thursday, September 8, 2016

La rentrée in France is back!

It is September and life is back in Paris. This period called la rentrée starts in the beginning of September and I'd say it is already well on its way. The term rentrée does not translate well. Maybe you've never heard about it so if you are new to this keep on reading.
I know in English we refer to "back to school", but la rentrée covers much more. La rentrée is an annual shift in spirit and motivation. Everyone in France refers to this period of time constantly as the period where we go back to our daily routine with more energy. Most procrastinators use it as the period of time where decisions must be made.
So school starts, most french people are back from holidays and in good spirits to follow through until the end of the year when new resolutions will be made. Also during this time, the streets are once again crowded in french cities like Paris. The shops and restaurants are back in business and the metros are packed from packed.

  The cold will once again return to Paris after such a lovely summer, but I will not be complaining, no sir. Even though the french take much more vacation than people in many countries, I strongly feel that we are still giving 100% at work and demonstrating we are equally productive, with 5 weeks of vacation and all. Quality of life also does not lack here in France. The balance of life, work, family is pretty much proven to be a success. I am happy about that because I live here. So, batteries get charged on vacation to enable people to put on their best face in la rentrée.
A good time to start something
Like we make resolutions during the new year, the same applies to la rentrée. You make fitness goals, do some closet cleaning, focus on work projects, students go back to school and people like me try to blog more. Ok, at least have the intention to!
 I've got a few things already in progress and I am pretty enthusiastic about them. Let's see how I'll be doing by Christmas!

Bon rentrée to all and have fun!