After finishing my Master’s abroad, I thought that one year wasn’t enough time to have fully experienced life in Paris. Even after you do all the touristy things, there is so much more to explore. One of the reasons I love this living in this city is that it’s hard to get bored. There’s always a new restaurant to discover or a unique exhibit to see. Even just walking around my favorite neighborhoods never seems to get old.
I looked for jobs to stay in the city of lights, but ultimately ended up in the South of France for a once in a lifetime job. Since my university teaching job only had a two year contract, I needed to find something else if I wanted to stay in France! After a lot of hard work and some luck, I got a job at an international school teaching English in Paris. I’m content to be back in this iconic city, but part of me still dreams of the sunny south.
Finding an Apartment in Paris
In July and August, I spent a lot of time and effort looking for a decent Parisian apartment. I didn’t end up finding exactly, what I was looking for, but I did secure a cute studio in a nice area. Most of the listings I liked, I found through SeLoger, but I actually found my current place using a website called Flatlooker. The interesting thing about this site is that apartment visits are 100% virtual. I know what you must be thinking… that sounds a little sketchy! The pictures, 360 degree tours, and videos are good quality, however. It seemed to have good reviews on Google and Trust pilot and I saw some other people vouch for it in different expat in France groups, so I determined it was legitimate enough for me.
If the place didn’t look like the pictures, I would be reimbursed and if I ended up not liking the place, I could just stay there until I find a better place. The préavis, or notice you have to give before moving in Paris is one month. In smaller cities and towns it can be up to 3 months. I liked being able to do this process online because I didn’t have much time before my new job was starting and I needed a place for September! I had been to Paris twice for visits in in July and each time and I only got one offer. I didn’t accept that place in the end because the contract was somewhat suspect and the agency seemed to take advantage of foreigners. I could have reserved an air bib for a month, but I wanted a real address and the thought of looking for housing while starting a new job stressed me out! The process with Flatlooker took about a week in total.
Thankfully, when it was time to move in, the place was just as pictured, and even better than I imagined! My favorite thing about the place is the view of the Paris rooftops, and my least favorite is the fact that it’s on the 6ème étage (7th floor) without an elevator. I’m slowly getting used to the stairs though and my legs are getting stronger!
Starting a New Job
It feels good to be busy again and have a reason to leave the house. Yet, it’s exhausting at the same time because I basically went from half online/half in-person to summer break and now back full time again! Thankfully there is one full day a week when I don’t have classes so I can use that day to chill/run errand/ and lesson plan from home. I’ve got new curriculums to plan, new students to teach, and new colleagues to get to know. It’s been an adjustment working with younger students again and some groups are more difficult than others. Luckily most of my classes are less than 20 students, but a few times per week I have more than 30 in my classroom! One of my teacher goals this year is definitely to manage my classroom more effectively.
Parisian Social Life
It’s nice to have some personal space, but a little lonely sometimes now that I’m living on my own. My French boyfriend is now working and living in Toulouse. I was able to visit last weekend for the European Heritage Days, but these first few months we are both saving money so weekly visits aren’t possible. We plan to reserve train tickets in advance though so that this winter we will be able to see each other more often!
I know a few people in Paris already, and was even able to meet up with some other Instagramers/bloggers! Three friends I originally met in Perpignan are also moving to Paris this year, so it’ll be nice to have a few familiar faces in the city. I need to find some kind of hobby or club to join to make some more friends and have a regular activity that is not school related!
I can’t believe September is almost over. I’m excited for the fall weather and am already counting down towards the next school holiday! Any guesses as to where I’ll be heading for la Toussaint vacation?
À la prochaine,