Sarajevo, Bosnia & Herzegovina

“Why the Balkans?” and, “Where are the Balkans?” were the two questions I was most affronted with in the weeks leading up to my nine-day jaunt around the region this past April. There are many reasons why. When I first moved to Valenciennes three (!) years ago, a had a friend who loved traveling through the Balkans; until meeting him I hadn’t really ever given much thought … Continue reading Sarajevo, Bosnia & Herzegovina

“Take the Sourest Lemon that Life has to offer, and Turn it into Something Resembling Lemonade.”

When I started blogging consistently four years ago, I promised myself that I would not become one of those (well-intended) TAPIF blogs that starts off really strong, and then tapers off somewhere after Christmas. I wanted to create the blog that hadn’t yet existed- an ordinary TAPIFer who gave valuable information about bureaucracy, teaching, traveling, everyday insight into life in France, and was there until … Continue reading “Take the Sourest Lemon that Life has to offer, and Turn it into Something Resembling Lemonade.”

A Week in Budapest and London

Over the February holidays, I took a week of vacation to Budapest and London, both places I have been before. My friend Rashida and I took advantage of the February low-season prices, scored a ridiculously cheap airline ticket and an excellently-located AirBnb (click here for a discount off your first stay) near the Basilica, and enjoyed 4 days in the Hungarian capital. Rashida is a huge … Continue reading A Week in Budapest and London

A Summary of 2016

Ah, 2016. A year of ups and downs, highs and lows, and everything in between. For me, it was a bittersweet year. I started 2015 with two grandfathers and 2016 with zero. I a new, stable, better-paid job and visa sponsorship, as well as my foot in the door in European International schools— a professional opportunity that has really challenged me and my teaching (in … Continue reading A Summary of 2016

A Weekend Jaunt to Barcelona, Spain

My friend Megan (with whom I ran the Paris half marathon) finished her lectrice position in Lille last June and jetted south to sunny Spain, where she landed a great job at a French international school. Luckily for me, the Toussaint holidays were the perfect time for me to drop down for a visit. Megan and I met on Friday in Barcelona (coincidentally, where I spent my first Toussaint … Continue reading A Weekend Jaunt to Barcelona, Spain

British Summer: Six August Days in Londontown

Although I took my obligatory French Riviera vacation at the end of July, I was still itching to escape the quiet, hot north for a few days in August. Feeling a bit lonely and a bit blue, I decided to take advantage of various Eurostar deals and spend a long weekend (Thursday to Tuesday) visiting friends in London. I go to London often– at least … Continue reading British Summer: Six August Days in Londontown

So, You Want to Live in France…

Let me make this clear: I love, love, love getting comments, messages, and email from readers, and make a point to respond to each one I receive. But lately, I’ve noticed a trending, recurring question in many of the messages I receive– often a derivative of the following: “I want to live and work longterm in France/Europe/stay in France after TAPIF. What did you do to get there? … Continue reading So, You Want to Live in France…