someone once said that if you can look back at the entire year remembering times you’ve experienced profound emotion (sadness, happiness, intrigue, grief… – that made you cry or really laughed so much that it hurt your stomach muscles), then, that year was not a wasted year. it’s not about how much money you made or have or how big your house is, or who you know or what you drive (unless you live in l.a. ;-)). that’s not important, really. and it’s definitely not about how many people you’ve impressed. that’s nothing to be proud about.
well, i can honestly look back at 2005 and remember times i’ve cried and laughed (sometimes at the same time!) – oh, and i’m not counting that time when the mean farm lady yelled at me and made me cry. anyway, i had an amazing year. we spent a complete year in our first house that we really love (though it needs some work here and there); the year was full of fun, love, family & friends; we also made new friends; i started playing music after a two year hiatus; we traveled quite a bit; ate a lot; laughed a lot; cried a lot; worked liked crazy and volunteered a giant chunk of our time to an NGO; we met great people who care deeply about humanity, and we met some sleazy french national assembly politicians who can lie through a huge smile as effortlessly as drinking a glass of water. yup, we looked evil straight in the eye. we suffered through immense challenges and overcame obstacles. we also started a business in france several months ago (yes, we ARE that crazy!) and we’re already out of the red, yay. we completely changed our lifestyle to be as environmentally responsible as possible. we can’t go as far as having one of those weird compost toilets (we do have limits) but we do the best we can.
one of the best things about 2005 has been keeping this blog, www.whytraveltofrance.com – it’s been fun, and i’ve promised myself that i’ll only keep it if it remains fun. i’ve been accused of being a french basher but if anyone thinks that, they don’t know me, and they probably are a bit too serious. this site is all in fun (most of the time!) so if you’ve been offended, i’m sorry about it but please know that i was most likely joking. i mean, if i hated france and french people i wouldn’t have married a french guy and i certainly would not have chosen to live in france. c’mon. i live in france because i really love it here. (and i do have a choice about where i live). no, it’s not a perfect place, but it’s much better than that: france’s beauty, blemishes and quirkiness make life a bit more interesting to us; it’s an amazing place to live – and that is why it is THE most visited country on earth.
anyway, i hope you can look back at 2005 with a smile because you really lived it fully and passionately (no wasted time with people you do not wish to be around, or doing things you truly do not want to do.) – and you experienced life with true feelings, discovery, love, awe, fun and with no regrets (and no emptiness).
i do wish for you even a better year for 2006, a year that is inspiring for you, the best year you’ve ever known.