Escaping burning Paris, le temps d’un weekend

I wrote a few lines on my free time the last few weeks, here is a little note I wrote in July. I am currently in the French Alps, trying to figure out what’s coming next, professionally.

Today is Monday, as usual I woke up early, a few minutes before my alarm would ring. I left Paris by train from a busy Gare Montparnasse, feeling the need to escape the 40+ degrees (celsius 😄) of the upcoming few days. If you have ever been in Paris in summer you probably noticed the lack of trees, with the ground capturing the heat from the sun, making sure that you are well cooked. For example, ground temperature in this case would be closer to 60 degrees…

A beautiful thatched roof house in the middle of french countryside

I’m so glad I could join my cousins in the countryside, they have a beautiful house, made of 3 littles houses surrounding a beautiful little pool, in the middle of the wheat fields. The house has a thatched roof, pretty uncommon these days, for those wondering it means it’s covered with a thick layer of dry vegetation such as straw. There is no light pollution, meaning that you have a beautiful night sky, and can even enjoy the Milky Way. Alice in wonderland kind of house.

Lately it was so warm that even sleeping at night was difficult, with the only cold surface being the kitchen’s floor … I even considered going to sleep there at some point. It is again such a relief to be far from the concrete.

I am writing from under the trees, a light breeze cooling down my neck. The sun is blazing hard on the nearby fields, it’s probably reaching 40/50 degrees. The garden’s grass has suffered the past two days, coming from a nice green to a dry yellow. I can hear people chatting, and the nice music of the birds singing all day. This is the main sound here, only wind in the trees and birds singing from early morning to early evening. 

I even heard my cousin this morning saying that her husband’s colleagues are complaining when he works from here, because of the enchanted sound birds make during video conference.

Me, I won’t have video call, neither I will work from here. For the first time in a while, I chose to leave my computer home, just took the iPad to be able to write down during those few days. 

I must say I didn’t find any new clients yet since I left the last one. It wasn’t going well and at some point it was hurting my self confidence more that necessary, the money was not worth it anymore. Not to find excuses but summer is not the best moment to find new clients. I knew it but I chose mental health issues over it. Since I wrote this article, I am having many interviews, but yeah since France is basically on vacation, it’s not progressing much.

We sleep greatly here, there is no noise at all at night. The sky is full of stars, it’s such a beautiful thing to watch for hours, filling my nights with dreams of the universe and beyond. With the latest James Webb telescope pictures, we can only dream of stars. Even the first picture they pulled out was worth the $10 billion investment.

It’s 34 right now, the forecast says 39 later, one of the warmest day. I enjoyed the swimming pool this morning while the sun was still alright. From now on I won’t be anywhere but in the shadows. I had varicose surgery 10 days ago and I must say it hurts quite a lot. I have to wear those contention stockings that covers my whole leg, not the best with this kind of weather… I basically look like the perfect cliché of the German tourist, with high socks and shorts.

This year there are lots of wasps 🐝 around. The winter has been warm so it’s quite normal. Wasp tends to get closer to humans when it’s really warm because they look for water. We are a bunch here, and each of us got stung at least once during the last few days, luckily, no one was in harms way. I would say this is the only downside of the countryside.

It’s quite hard to be far from my love, she had to go back to Poland for work, and me, I am kind of stuck here until I sign a new contract, whether it is as a freelancer or as a standard contract. I am thinking to switch back to an unlimited contract because we would like to move from Poland at some point, and we need at least one of us with a stable situation for a while.

I just saw a lezard walking on the pavements near the pool. He is probably living his best life on those warmer days.  Our international friends are enjoying the sun by the pool, they all got super red super fast, everyone is drinking quite a lot of cocktails and beer during the day, making us a very joyous tribe. I did not participate the last games, judging it was too warm for me, but they basically organized something in between olympic games and Koh Lanta (the French tv shows with parisians on an island) and it was epic. I have to say I am very impressed by the creativity of the Scottish , Irish and British these few days. They have no limits in inventing new drinking games, and other ways to party.

They take a big jar of coffee by 9 pm to get ready for the night’s cocktails and games. They are so serious when it comes to cocktails, and I have been impressed by the quality of beverages. Truth is that I get tipsy right after two glasses which makes me a very small drinker in the pack. Also I am trying to be reasonable given the heat. Our days basically starts at 8/9 am, and ends at 2am.

I didn’t bring my computer, I had not intention to work or look for work, sure I still took the bare minimum, meaning my iPad Mini and my iPhone mini. Not sure why but I have always loved smaller devices, using a phone one handed is a luxury, and this small iPad is the best when it comes to be enjoying content or play games. In fact, I used to be sort of a gamer, playing quite a lot to World of Tank Blitz in the past, I gave up on it when I started taking coding classes. Not really missing it, these days I would only play to a few quite realistic Appstore flying simulators such as RFS, infinity flight or my beloved Aerofly FS 2022.

I am not sure yet what I really want to do next, I am sure of one thing, as much as salary can be important, the general ambiance of the company will take a very big part in making my next choice. Once I was asked during interview, how I would chose between offers, it might sounds boring, but I answered that the feeling was very important. Before I would have always chose the most famous company or the most fast growing company, hoping to learn much from it. I think I have definitely changed my priorities when it comes to happiness, including workplace as a place important in the balance.


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