President Macron addressed the French nation last Nov24 to announce new measures to fight this health situation that the world is going through right now.
I thought we’re ending the lockdown on December 1, but turns out that it will be on Dec15 instead. Yesterday, the new changes were implemented, particularly on the extension of the distance that we can go for exercise: 20km for 3hours. Hehe. And then when the lockdown ends on the 15th, the curfew will be back. Good thing was, they gave a special exemption on Christmas Eve (24th) and New Year’s Eve (31st). But I hope people will still observe safe health measures so we can all be done with this already. The health workers are getting saturated with all the amount of work that needs to be done in the hospitals and the rise on the issues of mental health and domestic violence is staggering.
It’s the 24th day of the second lockdown here in France. I’m sure that others are also counting down until this is over. Many are looking forward to the holidays in December, including me. Even though I’m not going home this year for obvious health reasons, I plan to celebrate this with a few friends, hopefully, for Noche Buena on the 24th. But it remains to be just a plan until we can be sure if it’s safe to gather together even when we’re just five.
The pandemic is still here, and we haven’t seen the light at the end of the tunnel yet. Some countries are still in quarantine. Some have finished the government-imposed lockdown (like here in France). But most of all, every one of us is adapting to the new normal.
During my first month at work here in France only a few years ago, my manager asked me one of the age-old questions that have been asked to many of us in this lifetime: how do you see yourself in the next 5 years? It was a challenging question, and one would think, you have to make an impression if you get asked by this question. But I have always been honest, and I made this clear with my manager and so, I said that I did not have any plans yet, especially that I just relocated to France from my job post in Bangkok, Thailand. The move to a new continent was something that this Asian still hasn’t wrapped around her head yet, I’m telling you. I never thought, nor expected, that I would be moving in this side of the world, away from the people I know and love.
It’s the last Sunday of September and it’s cold already. I haven’t gone out yet but from what I heard, there was already snow somewhere in the Alps.
Another week has come and gone and October is coming soon. Winter will soon upon us, and then, Christmas! 🙂 Things have been busy at work but I haven’t been physically back in the office. For six months now, I’ve been working from home. Other than that, I keep myself busy with some other things.
Real life has taken over for the past weeks since I last posted anything here. I go to social media only every now and then just to check on family and friends’ posts, but other than that, I occupied myself with work (things have been really in the office right now and I’m grateful), writing a book, reading some and trying to get back to arts.
I recently downloaded Pinterest, too, just to check on ideas for interior decorations. I just acquired another property back home and I had these many ideas on how to make it look homely. My parents were taking care of it, but being away from them (and did not have anything else to do right now but stay here in Europe due to the pandemic), I amused myself in looking at those beautiful kitchen designs. I love cooking and I love spending time coming up with something delightful to put on the table.
I don’t know if I will be able to continue with this series of The Sunday Currently. Depending on how you look at it, Sunday is either the start or end of the week. For me, it’s the end of a week/weekend, and today, I started my morning by attending the online streaming of the Catholic mass officiated by H.E. Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle in Rome.
I planned to go to Nice to explore the shops but I feel lazy going out in the hot weather, plus some of the shops that I want to go are closed today. So I decided to focus more on my blog by posting some travel stuff and scheduling some short stories that I wrote a few years ago.
What can I say? Time flies when you’re having fun. And I did, still do. I have always wanted to go to Europe and the opportunity given to me by my job to move and work in France was something that I could not pass. It has been a year since that momentous move. I’m still trying to cope with the culture and language, but I’m enjoying it.
One of the things I enjoyed doing was traveling. As a resident, I can go anywhere within the Schengen countries without worrying about visa since I’m a Filipino passport holder. Within a year, I was able to travel to Germany, the Netherlands, Italy, Greece, Spain, and some parts of France. I have my favorites but that will be in another post.
Living in France is a challenge for an expat like me. Not only with the language, and the culture, but also with the bureaucracy. French offices love papers, a lot. I made sure that I accomplished all the forms that HR sent me before moving here last year. The company hired a third-party team to help expats get settled easily. In less than four months, I finally got my resident card. Before the year ends, I finally got my health card and social security card. By the new year, I finally had my own general doctor, dentist, ob-gyne – which are all very important to me.
Now that somehow, I’m settled here, I want to focus on the things I want to do on the side when I’m off from work. I want to be re-acquainted with the arts, say hello to my brushes and paints again. Also, to dedicate time to finish writing. Hopefully by the end of 2019, I was able to complete one original story and make it a book. I’m in the process of one right now. Perhaps when I have the time to share the progress, I will put it here. Right now, I’m trying to put my presence back in social media, starting with this blog, and then Twitter, Facebook Page and Instagram.
Before 2017 ended, I was contemplating a decision to try my luck in applying for a position in our office in Nice, France. I even remembered telling this to my Dad over a bottle of wine and some nuts. After my Christmas holiday in Manila, I went back to Bangkok, invigorated. My manager called me to his office and, surprisingly, asked about the position (as it was still open), and if I’m interested. He factored in my strengths and weaknesses, aside from the fact that I’m single and it would be a great opportunity for me to grow and experience more. I told him that I was thinking about it. There were two positions open, one in Miami, FL USA and the other was in Nice, FR. While the cultural adjustment in Miami would have been easier, I have always wanted to go to Europe so I said, sure, why not? I tried for the position.
After two conference calls within three weeks, I got the position and soon, I’m bound for France. It’s going to be a new chapter for me. I remembered my sister said that if this decision made me feel excited and scared, then I should go for it.
I will definitely go for it.
From tom yum to a croissant. The comparison might not be the same but hey, the transition is happening. I’m moving out of Thailand and off to France. And it’s going to be soon! 🙂