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A New York Times bestseller
Finding love and freedom in a pen, a paintbrush...and Paris
How much money does it take to quit your job?
Exhausted and on the verge of burnout, Janice poses this questions to herself as she doodles on a notepad at her desk. Surprisingly, the answer isn't as daunting as she expected. With a little math and a lot of determination, Janice cuts back, saves up, and buys herself two years of freedom in Europe.
A few days into her stop in Paris, Janice meets Christophe, the cute butcher down the street-who doesn't speak English. Through a combination of sign language and franglais, they embark on a whirlwind Paris romance. She soon realizes that she can never return to the world of twelve-hour workdays and greasy corporate lingo. But her dwindling savings force her to find a way to fund her dreams again. So Janice turns to her three loves-words, art, and Christophe-to figure out a way to make her happily-ever-after in Paris last forever.
didn’t know how to bridge the gap between writing songs for others and becoming a performer himself. I started to feel stirrings for him, but by now I was already mentally packing my bags. This was no time to start anything. No illicit plans were made, no flirting, no innuendo. On one of our coffee nights, I started to pack up to go. “It’s late,” I yawned. “I’m heading home.” As I got up to leave, he grabbed my arm and gave me a wink. “The night is young. Let’s get a beer.” And that’s when I
joke with the Customs guy, for fear of saying something irreversible. (I have always felt mildly guilty at Customs. I have to keep telling myself that I did nothing wrong. I was innocent. I didn’t even buy Duty Free). The Customs agent looked at my passport. “MacLeod of the Clan MacLeod.” Has every man in the world watched The Highlander? Is there some kind of specialized training for men? Because every man I met along the way referred to me as “MacLeod of the Clan MacLeod.” “Yes,” I replied,
thrilled, as am I. Many thanks, Mary By May, six months after our first visit, we were able to return to City Hall with our bursting folder of papers. The lady went through them all with her lips pursed, hovering over each form with a red pen like a stern teacher. The official copy of our birth certificates had to be issued within six months and ours were expired. Off we went again to order new copies of the copies, which were to be translated by a translator again. The old translations
had doubts about marriage was back when the lady from the city hall was taking her sweet time approving the dossier, akin to a big folder of the Vacation Request Forms of my past. Would she ever let us get married? But I never had doubts with Christophe. It would be my great pleasure to marry this man. In Paris! I still couldn’t believe it. Making it official was important to Christophe. Yes, it was important for him to show me how much he loved me by committing to me, but I also sensed he was
needed to effectively deal with my situations. And secondly, I needed to realize that I was an artist. Not the one who paints letters about Paris. The artist who is the head honcho creative director of her own life. We must know how to design our lives. We are all artists, and each day is a canvas. Writing in my journal each day was how I redesigned my life. I became conscious of just how much I disliked my day-to-day existence. I would get up, react, and repeat. I had created a fast, busy,