Sunday, September 27, 2009

End Goal

G and I tend to talk a lot about the future.  Not just, oh, 5 years from now we want an Audi (although we do).  But talk about what we want 16 years from now when he's retiring from the military.  Also, what we want to have accomplished by then.  Some of them are lofty goals, but I say reach for the moon, if you fail you'll land among the stars.  

So one of our big dreams/goals is to end up in France for a few years (or more).  The specifics change often.  Some days we want an apartment in Paris where we can get out and roam the city.  Other days we want to buy a farm in the South of France and have goats and a large garden.  This isn't unusual, since we have the debate even about where to live here. Never the suburbs, it's always about city or a place with some land.  

To achieve this we have plans, things we want to make sure and tick off our list.  Debts paid off, mortgage mainly paid off, school finished (at least for him, and usually this includes me too, but I want to do it without going into more debt).  We have amounts of money we want to put away.  Preparations.  

One of the big things is that I need to re-fluent myself, and G needs to learn French.  So we're going to Rosetta Stone it.  G makes me giggle with his (very) poor French, but boy does he try!  And we've talked about making a trip to Montreal this next Spring (where a Jaeger store is).  That way he gets some real life practice in before the big Paris trip.  We never took the time to go to Paris when we lived in England.  I want to see it in the fall, to carry an umbrella and wear knee high boots and a trench coat and tramp around the city I love so much.  To sit in a cafe sipping my cafe au lait, making observations about the life around us.  Blending in.  We're hoping this time next year we will be getting ready for a vacation.  

I rarely speak about the things I love the most.  I am secretive, keeping my cards close, while still appearing to be open.  I have pages of my history book that even G doesn't know, or doesn't hear me talk upon.  Paris is one of them.  When I went when I was 18 I cried as we left Paris to head to London.  I have never felt more at home than I did in Paris.  After 13 years of speaking the language I was worried it would be a nice trip, but would feel awkward.  That as an American I would feel out of place.  Instead, I was able to blend in.  To sit and drink wine at a local bar with my friends and not feel like we were on a trip.  Instead we all contemplated asking our parents to forward our things there.  The bohemian in me aches for that city.  For an old apartment with high ceilings and wooden floors.  A place to paint the city, and to make my fingers fly across the violin strings.  A place to belong.

So we plan.  We work on the language skills, not just for trips, but for life.  We watch French films without subtitles, learning to recognize the words from sound rather than putting one language to another.  We look up French versions of childhood books, keeping track of where to find them.  We research ways to make sure the (future) children will be fluent.  To make the transition easier if we decide to leave military life early.  

And the best part of this whole thing is not the planning, but the living, the doing.  Knowing we have end goals doesn't make the journey less exciting.  And finally G will know what I am saying when I play like a French woman....


  1. Casey and I have the same discussion, except insert Germany for France. I wish you the best of luck with making your dreams come true.

  2. Is it weird that this sounds exactly like Jesse and I? And insert Spain for France. Lol. We are so similar it's really creepy almost. Ha. Who would have ever guessed...

  3. Apparently the group of us are going to take Western Europe by storm!