Life in France is Like a Game of Backgammon
I hope you had a chance to listen to Oliver Gee’s Earful Tower Podcast that launched on Monday. If not, here it is: How, where, and why you should buy a home in Paris.
It was the first of many collaborations in the works, including a live interview with an audience on the evening of April 18th. Stay tuned for more information on this, so that those of you in the Paris vicinity can attend if you like. In addition, Oliver and I have a “Walk Show” planned. Much like a “Talk Show,” except this is an interview while walking through a particular part of Paris and I’m his next guest. All this is possible via a closed Facebook group you can open by becoming a member on “Patreon.” (This is the best way to support Oliver’s efforts so that you can keep listening to his podcasts!)
It’s no wonder that Oliver Gee’s Earful Tower podcasts are skyrocketing in popularity. I liked Oliver the minute I met him on the street in front of my daughter’s “collège” which was by chance. He recognized me and didn’t hesitate to yell out my name like Rocky Balboa — “Yo Adrian!” — a quote that has “been named by film enthusiasts as one of the most iconic quotes in sports film history.” (Wikipedia.org) I hear it constantly, of course, but never fail to acknowledge it. We had a brief chat on that spot and decided to do a podcast together in the near future.
Then, after climbing the six flights to his tiny recording studio in a converted “chambre de bonne,” I liked him even more. He has the perfect interrogative, making his subject feel totally at ease and simply having fun together while getting the deepest thoughts out in the open.
The podcast has gotten a lot of commentary, but I was most intrigued by one in particular that arrived in my inbox this morning from someone who claims to be “an avid listener of Oliver Gee’s Earful Tower podcast” and loved our episode. He’s a resident of Atlanta, Georgia who has visited Paris four times in the last three years. Like so many of you, he’s been dreaming of living in France for many years, but thinking it’s just too difficult. He used the exact same words I’ve heard so often: “I will get to do it one day…eventually.”
And then “eventually” never comes because there’s that little voice inside that keeps telling him it’s just too difficult to do to become a reality. It’s always the same hurdles that so many people fear: * Getting a visa, * Finding a job, * Finding a place to live, etc., etc., etc. Then he wrote, “But hearing you say that it’s not as difficult as some Americans might think made me wonder what tricks and tips you might have that I haven’t found yet.”
He’s been reading the usual material that makes it seem “daunting.” I like that word, because “daunting” is not “impossible.” It’s just “daunting” — and yes, there are hurdles…but I do have “tricks and tips” that make it a whole let less “daunting” and certainly “possible.” In fact, it’s one of the things I enjoy the most, because I lived through it myself and love sharing it with my clients.
When I came to France in 1994, I came with a family on a one-year renewable visitor visa without the ability to legally work and earn money. At the end of three years in Paris, with my savings gone (literally almost nil) and upon the divorce from my marriage, I had the choice of returning to the U.S. or finding a way of surviving in Paris with our daughter to support. I simply couldn’t bare to leave Paris. So, “surviving” is what I set out to do while transitioning into something more stable and legitimate. During those years and even much later, I learned a lot. I’ve been through the ups and downs and discovered how to strategize from mere survival to true success and have been teaching others how to do this for the last 15 years.
One key element to this working for you is questioning how risk averse you are. If you are an “Honest Abe” who can’t sleep at night because you told your best friend her hair looked great when it really didn’t, then go back to your comfy little existence and don’t even attempt this. But, if you are even the slightest bit of an adventurer…realizing how little you have to lose by making an effort, then there is no reason you can’t jump the hurdles and make it happen…at least with the “tricks and tips” I’ll offer you.
This isn’t a “pitch.” It’s an explanation for why I simply can’t “meet for a coffee” and bestow all these words of wisdom on each and every one of you aspiring Expats. I will, however, meet for a minimum of two hours in person or virtually to hear your story and provide the “tricks and tips” you will need to * Getting a visa, * Finding a job (change that to “Earning a living”), * Finding a place to live, etc., etc., etc. I can also, and even more importantly, strategize with you about how to turn your current property holdings into viable French property investments and how to live a whole lot less expensively in France than in North America (or elsewhere). There is a minimum charge for my time, but I can assure you, you will find it a bargain.
The sooner you have the consultation, the better…even if you think your goals are for a move years down the road, because you will want to set yourself up for future success. My philosophy is this: life is like a game of backgammon. The roll of the dice is luck, but how you move your pieces on the board sets up your future “lucky” rolls. Anyone who plays backgammon knows this.
Guests of our rental apartments are entitled to one free hour of consultation if I am available. All others must schedule the appointment and yes, there is a fee — but the good news is that the fee you pay applies toward our property services and therefore nothing is lost along the way.
For all you living in the Los Angeles area, I will be there making appointments for live in-person consultations from April 30th through May 4th at a special rate. I hope you take advantage of this opportunity.
For more information about the consultation, you’ll find details here.
To submit a request for a consultation, complete our form.
I look forward to helping you set up your board so that you get all the lucky rolls!
A la prochaine…
Adrian Leeds Group
P.S. If you want tickets to the live show with Earful Tower on Wednesday, April 18th, get in touch now to reserve your places. Not yet a supporter of the Earful Tower on Patreon? Now’s the time to join! Here’s the link, with plenty of bonus content out there already!
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