Meant to Be in Paris
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Wednesday, September 20, 2006
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Dear Parler Paris Reader,
While traveling to the U.S., I rented my own apartment as I usually do, to a lovely woman who has been reading the column for a while now. It was arranged on the last minute and we had little chance to chat by phone or email. Fortunately, she arrived the evening before I left so I had a chance to show her around the apartment before taking the flight west bound and then had no contact with her until my arrival yesterday.
By phone from the taxi headed home, she said she would wait there till I arrived as she had something very amazing to tell me.
While she was staying in Paris, an old French friend came to visit her at the apartment. Immediately her friend was struck with childhood memories of the apartment. She described the apartment as it was then, when, incredulously, her aunt and uncle had lived there! (These were not the same people from whom I had purchased the apartment in 2000.)
I quickly found the “Acte de Vente” in my files and there in the description of the provenance of the apartment, were the names of her aunt and uncle, clearly noted as having sold the apartment in 1972 for a whopping 134,000 French francs, the equivalence of 20,428 euros. Twenty-eight years later, I purchased the apartment for ten times that amount, and now with six years of ownership, the apartment has tripled in value.
I spoke with my renter’s friend, their niece, who gave me a bit of their history. Austrian Jews, they immigrated to France in 1938 to escape the Nazis. He was a dentist, but because he couldn’t practice legally in France (perhaps as difficult then as it is now to obtain working permits!), he set up a dental chair right here in what is now my living room (from where I write this) and saw patients “au noir” (“under the table”) — we imagine other Jewish immigrants and neighbors.
The niece described them to me as very upstanding and “correct” people, who adored their children who adored them in return. They were lucky enough to survive World War II here in Paris and live to ripe old ages. They have both since passed away, but their son is a doctor here in Paris and one of his children lives very near by in the same “quartier.” I easily found them all by searching on “Pages Jaunes” (the Internet-based Yellow Pages at http://www.pagesjaunes.fr).
The amazing “synchronicity” brings chills to my spine. I have always felt the apartment had “good spirits” — even from the first time I visited it, before my friend whose daughter had owned it previously, had even told me of their own good experiences here. Now, it is even more meaningful to me, that this Jewish family who sought refuge here, prospered in France and built a life, in spite of the difficulties of immigration and French bureaucracy. It mirrors my own personal story.
“Synchronicity” is something that happens to me virtually daily. I first started to notice it long before moving to France. Then the more I was aware of these “temporally coincident occurrences of acausal events” (as coined by the Swiss psychologist Carl Jung to describe an “acausal connecting principle,” or a pattern of connection that cannot be explained by direct causality), the more these events seemed to take place.
More simply put, synchronicity is “the experience of having two (or more) things happen coincidentally in a manner that is meaningful to the person or persons experiencing them, where that meaning suggests an underlying pattern.” It differs from coincidence in that it implies not just a happenstance, but some other underlying dynamic that is meaningful in some way to those experiencing the coincidence.
Synchronistic events put me on the path to a life in France, and most significantly, to
It all seems to have been “beshert.” For those of you who don’t know Yiddish, beshert means fated, destined or meant to be.
A la prochaine…
P.S. Don’t miss the Parler Parlor French-English Conversation La Rentre Hot Dog Party this coming Saturday. Everyone is welcome to join us and there are discounts when you sign up that day. Scroll down for more information or visit http://www.parlerparlor.com
To access the complete Community Calendar, you now have two choices:
1. Click here for the online version with hot links to your favorite sites:
2. Click here for a printer-friendly text version:
We gladly run announcements for non-profit organizations. If you wish your community announcement to appear, please provide the text in ENGLISH just as you’d like it to appear and send it to Lynda Sydney: [email protected]
We reserve the right to edit as necessary. We cannot promise it will be run if the information is provided in French or if the format is unacceptable. Please use the following listings as your format guide.
Thank you, Adrian
Moving to Paris? Our experienced relocation expert will help make your move easy and hassle-free. We offer complete property consultation and search services…visit
This week in French Property Insider…
On the Champ de mars this apartment on the 3rd floor of a building with elevator has been restored. Large living room, master bedroom with wood floors, fully equipped kitchen…FPI Subscribers Read On…
Learn how to buy property in France. French Property Insider is an e-mail newsletter from the editors of Parler Paris. Learn all the insights, recommendations, and discoveries about buying and investing in real estate in Paris and France that French Property Insider readers get every week.
Excerpt from the Writers Insider Guide to Paris
If you have sufficient means to support yourself for one year in France then you are eligible for the “carte de séjour temporaire visiteur.” For writers this may include individuals who have received a grant or an advance on a project, anyone who has given up or retired from a lucrative career to come to Paris as a writer, or individuals able to subsist on inheritances or a patron’s money à la Woolf in the room of her own, Joyce and Harriet Weaver, or Hemingway’s profitable second marriage...for all the details, see the guide…
Welcome to your home in Paris. Home is how you will feel in a private apartment in Paris that has the “seal of approval” from Parler Paris Apartments and me, Adrian Leeds.
Parler Paris Apartments offers high quality accommodations to make your stay in the City of Light as enjoyable and memorable as possible. We at Parler Paris know each and every apartment owner or manager personally, and stand behind the quality of those we represent. We understand your needs and desires, all the small details that make a rental apartment a warm and welcoming home – and a much better alternative to an impersonal hotel!
Parler Paris Apartments is administered and serviced by the same great team as Parler Paris, French Property Insider and French Property Consultation. You can trust that Parler Paris Apartments and all those with whom it is associated will do their best for your 100% guaranteed satisfaction.
* “Le Provençal” Studio: Now Available!
Located in a very charming and quiet 18th-century building in the heart of Le Marais, this sunny studio is perfect for one or two seeking ultimate Parisian calm, flavored with the beautiful colors of Provence.
The next gathering is October 10, 2006
So mark your calendars to be sure not to miss it! See /parlerparis/apresmidi.html for more details.
New to France or just looking to make the most of expatriate life?
At the Expatica Welcome to France fair you will get the information you need from companies and agencies specialised in expatriate services.
You’ll find information on house hunting, finding a job, immigration and permits, staying long-term, and much more.
Meet the people who make expat life great, including the top clubs and associations, travel agents and event organisations.
Welcome to France
Tickets are FREE if you sign-up online before September 15th. For more information visit http://www.expatica.com/welcometofrance
To sign up for your FREE tickets, click here!
*** See the French Property Insider Consultation and John Howell of International Law Partnership booth number 55/56 next to the entertainment area and stay for our presentation, “Getting ready to find your dream home in France…” with John Howell and Adrian Leeds
LA RENTREE HOT DOG PARTY!
Come for Conversation! Then Have Lunch With Us !
Plus, Sign-Up That Day and Save!
*See New Rates Effective September 23, 2006
Practice speaking French and English. Make friends, discuss interesting topics, learn about other cultures, progress in understanding and speaking, naturally and easily. Meets three times a week — come as often as you like!
Meant to Be in Paris
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