Bye bye London, salut France

I am back in France! Well I have been for a while, this is a rather late announcement. I’ve taken so long to get back to this blog because I hadn’t factored in the effort it takes to leave a job.  I handed in my notice at the PR agency I had been working at in London, and after 7 ½ months there I was so happy to be leaving that I nearly fainted. Leaving your job, though, requires a lot more time and energy than I realized, even before handing in your notice. There’s angsting over the ‘right time’ to tell your boss, fortifying yourself with endless cups of tea before your meeting with him to tell him the news you’re off (particularly if it’s the second time you’ve had this meeting, and you need to convince him that this time it is for real), then there’s perfecting your poker face for when you’re not allowed to tell team members you’re leaving yet. Then there’s actually telling people, answering the questions as to why, when, where for. Then there’s the grim smile when they say (on hearing I am off to Germany) ‘oh god you’re so brave, I can’t believe you are doing that’. Once my last celebratory goodbye drink was gulped on my last Friday, I threw all of the contents of my desk into the recycling bin and skipped out of there with a smile on my face.

Yes it was bloody exhausting, leaving, but it was also fantastic. I am now officially free, free to screw my life up on my own terms and work when and where I want. No more 9-5 commute, no more open-office nightmares, no more mind-numbing boredom, no more PR jargon. I am free, free to be a freelancer. I was sad to say goodbye to London, in some respects, but probably not as much as I should have been. I’ll do a post about my time in London as soon as I can.

But for now I am back home in France, preparing for my next step. My family have lived here for three years now, so it certainly feels like home. I can’t wait to write some posts on this amazing place, and some of the experiences we have had and are having here. And of course I am getting very excited about my imminent move to Germany! ‘Move’ might be a pushing it a bit, I’ll probably only be there for a couple of months and I will be living with one of my best friends (who will be dubbed ‘S’ on here for now). But that’s what excites me more: there’s no fixed timetable, I am moving on my own terms. All I have to worry about is making sure my freelance work ticks over, but I know I can manage that.

In perfect poetic timing, I saw a verse from a Dr Seuss’s ‘Oh the places you’ll go’ whilst I was packing to leave London, that I instantly took to heart:

“You have brains in your head,
You have feet in your shoes,
You can steer yourself
in any direction you choose.
You’re on your own. And you know what you know.
And you’re the guy who’ll decide where to go.”

Pretty apt at this point in my life, I thought. Because I do have brains in my head, and feet in my shoes, and I’m about to use that power to decide where to go, on my own, knowing what I know.

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