Thursday, April 01, 2010

3D Juggling 474: Right Side Up

We often get emails and calls from people years after they have been in contact with us. Here's one story:

"New Years’ day and we woke to the worst possible news. My husband’s job was made redundant! In December I lost my job due to company relocation. Then my husband’s mother died. Great start to 2009!

Both in our early 60’s, deep recession and no job prospects, we were on our own. Friends suggested we offer our services as landscape gardeners which helped with the finances. Our first job won an award for Best Pub Garden. We knew this wouldn’t be enough to live on full time so we had to cash in a small pension and cancel EVERYTHING that wasn’t a necessity.

It was when we were in France restoring a friend’s garden - free lodging in exchange for our labour, I just happened to say out loud “If only someone could see us and what we are doing, maybe we could work abroad”. Ten days later a friend rang to say she knew of someone looking for house-sitters, animal guardians and groundsmen, were we interested? So we thought (not for long I might add) and went for it. Of course, playing it safe we could have stayed home, looked for jobs offering a meagre wage but very little satisfaction. What’s the dilemma? No income here or No income there? Besides, who gets to live in a Chateau every day of their lives??

We’ve been living in the Bordeaux region since January and will return to the UK in July, with the possibility of another house sit in the area for next year.

Having gone from fairly exotic careers, travelling the world on good money with all the trimmings, we now live hand to mouth in France. Our world revolves around getting up early to walk two large dogs, feed a donkey and chickens, plus gardening duties in a totally rural existence. Had we known what that involved would we have taken the chance? Sometimes you have to step outside the box and take the positives from such an experience.

We are having the adventure of a lifetime, have gained a whole new circle of friends, marginally improved my French and are VERY happy living a French way of life.

Sometimes when your world seems as though it’s been tipped upside down, you can land the right side up. Next stop Italy???"

Try it!

Love this? Do us a favour and send it to five people. Who thinks like you? You could send it to someone who needs some hope.

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