August 5, 2015

Four Years in Paris

What do I mean, only four years in Paris?!

Yes, the sad reality is that after four life-changing years in France, we are moving to...Germany.

It's mostly sad because we're leaving France. Germany itself is an exciting prospect for us, especially for two Americans who want to stay in the EU as long as possible!

This whole summer has been spent networking, negotiating, and translating all of our possible options for this coming sports season. I did receive offers in France, but we couldn't justify putting Marc through another year of unemployment. Instead, Marc got a job outside of Munich, coaching basketball and doing his thing again. We are so thankful!

I'm still working on what my job situation is going to look like. "Brainstorming" best describes my state of mind the past month, as Germany became our end-game. Volleyball, English tutoring, guiding tours (but, EW, snow?!), and blogging have all come to mind.

For now, the best idea came while I was floating in my parents' pool. I was reflecting on how this blog was going to take a Bavarian turn, and what a difference that would be from my Paris-heavy posts from the past four years. 

I was really glad I had the foresight to name my blog something neutral and not specific to any country or language. I was going back and forth from excited to experience new places to nostalgic about my happy times in Paris. Then the idea hit me.

Publish an eBook.

I interrupted my lazy California brainstorming, splashed out of the pool, and Four Years in Paris came to be.

In the course of a week (but really, it took four years to do the bulk of the work!), I learned everything I could about creating, formatting, and publishing eBooks. I edited, re-edited, had my grammar-wise mom and sister edit, and had my moments of wanting to destroy Kindle.

It was a great and necessary experience.

Compiling and reliving my Paris moments really brought me a sense of closure. I know we are doing the right thing by moving to Germany. Having everything I love about Paris in one file now makes it easier for me to move on.

Learning about and falling in love with Paris has been one of my favorite journeys. It's been a journey full of surprises, both good and bad, but mostly, my Four Years in Paris documents the best years of my far.

Whether you do or don't download the eBook is not the point. THANK YOU for whenever you've joined me in Paris, in France, in Europe, or anywhere. What started as a practical way to communicate my European adventures with family and friends in the USA has become so much more, and has grown to include thousands of readers.

For those of you who do want to download Four Years in Paris, you can do that on the Paris eBook page or the Four Years in Paris webpage. For Kindle users, FYIP is available on the Amazon website as well.

I hope you like the cover, the title, and the content. I thoroughly enjoyed putting it all together, and I'm so grateful I pursued blogging consistently to the point where an eBook was possible!

Four Years in Paris follows Christy Swagerty from 2011 to 2015 as she moved in and around the Île-de-France region as an athlete turned tourist turned expat. Join "Swags" as she sneaks into ballet rehearsals at the Opera Garnier, attempts haute couture and cuisine, and discovers a love for art, architecture, and music. From hosting their first French Thanksgiving and New Year's Eve parties to taking wedding photos along the Seine, Swags' Four Years in Paris takes you on a journey of a twenty-something American experiencing the fun and faux pas of living abroad for the first time.

What's up next for Swags?

Germany, obviously. Spain is on the docket for Christmas again. I'd love to take Marc to Portugal with me in the spring. I'm planning on Budapest and Vienna, and hoping for Croatia and maybe Poland or the Czech Republic. Marc is insisting on Berlin. We won't be lacking for places to go, that's for sure!

I'm linking up with #AllAboutFrance for the last time as an American living in France. I will still link-up with France posts, but it will now be as someone who used to live there. If you love France, you should definitely check it out!

Lou Messugo