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Not to Miss Anything If I Can Help It!

Do you ever feel overwhelmed by the life path that sits before you on your agenda? Or are you loathe to plan too far in advance because you prefer to “keep your options open” and feel more relaxed about it?

This is a conversation I had recently with a friend who is the latter, while I’m the one with the charged up agenda trying to fit in as much as I can to an already busy schedule. This doesn’t mean that I can’t be spontaneous or change plans at the drop of a hat, but there is simply so much to do within one’s short life span, that without the planning, I worry I might miss out on too much. Maybe that’s part of the problem: I don’t want to miss anything if I can help it. And why should I?

If you saw my agenda, it might scare you. Yes, I still write by hand in a paper agenda. God forbid I should resort to an electronic calendar and not have access to it or have a technical glitch and lose it all! Every year, I buy a new one and file away the previous year’s. Filed away are now the agendas from the last 30 years (or even more) which document my life in great detail. They have already become useful while writing my memoir and on many other occasions to jog a memory or two. When I die and my daughter finds them stashed away, she’ll have plenty to read about!

Living in Paris makes the need to schedule life in detail even more necessary. The City of Light is full of events, as is its proximity to Europe and the world to enable quite a lot of travel…easily, quickly and inexpensively. This is a primary reason so many of us would never want to return to living in a more remote place…like the United States. Americans end up isolated from the rest of the world because travel between countries is time consuming and expensive. Even between U.S. cities is as long a distance as between European countries. From Paris, we can hop a train and be in London in 2.15 hours. Want to go to Amsterdam? The Thalys train takes you there in 3.20 hours and can cost as little as €35. Now, how can you do that if you’re living in Los Angeles, Chicago or New York? You can’t.

Annual Artichoke Day DinnerAnnual Artichoke Day Dinner

From an Episode of House Hunters InternationalFrom an Episode of House Hunters International

Flamenco Dancer, Sara Baras

The Global Women's Leadership CirclesThe Global Women’s Leadership Circles

Carnaval de Nice

Lagerfeld &St Laurent, Kngs of Carnaval de NiceLagerfeld & St Laurent, Kngs of Carnaval de Nice

Fete du Citron in Menton

JFK High, Class of 1970JFK High, Class of 1970

Mytilene, Isle of LesbosMytilene, Isle of Lesbos

Nice in Nice - by EllaDyer

Author, Craig Carlson, at Meet the Authors 2019 Author, Craig Carlson, at Meet the Authors 2019

Just to give you an idea of what’s on my agenda for 2020 (in case you are interested), it starts with this weekend’s “Artichoke Day” dinner. It’s celebrated every year on February 2nd with a select group of friends who come from far and wide to eat artichokes chez moi. I’ve written about it every year in Parler Paris and this year will be no different, so stay tuned for Monday’s nouvellettre® when it’s explained how artichokes changed my life, for the better.

In the next six weeks, I will tape three more House Hunters International episodes, all in Paris and vicinity. For fans of the show, there are two shows “in the can” that haven’t yet aired (both that took place in Nice, one of which is actually a “Mediterranean Life”). You’ll be hearing more about these as we get their air dates. I’ll be writing about the upcoming tapings so that you can follow along with me as we tell our property tales on camera for an international audience.

In between, in February, a friend and I are hopping a plane for Madrid for the sole purpose of seeing Sara Baras perform. See how easy it is to do to just go somewhere in Europe for a short stint? The Flight to Madrid is only 2.15 hours. Sara Pereyra Baras is a flamenco dancer and choreographer like none other. If you have never seen her work her magic on stage alongside her compatriots, then you haven’t lived! I have introduced to her talent about 20 years ago here in Paris at the Théâtre de Châtelet and that changed my idea of flamenco completely. Now, I can’t get enough of her and her style of what might be termed “flamenco ballet.” Her calendar is currently booked through June with performances solely in Madrid, so since none were on the horizon for Paris this year, we opted for a quick trip to the Spanish capital. I urge you to put this on your agenda, too.

On February 26th, I will speak for the Global Women’s Leadership Circles along with Justine Trueman on the topic of “Women & Money: Investing into Real Estate vs Mutual Funds.” You need to be a member of the professional group because events such as this are exclusive, but that’s easy. I’ll be providing more information very soon on how to do that, but meanwhile, next week, Thursday evening, February 6th, the group is running a workshop on “Influencing Without Authority: How to Influence, Win People Over & Sell Your Ideas” with a cocktail. There are still have a few seats left so sign up NOW. Use this link to sign up! Or for more information, contact Nadira Artyk at, email at [email protected].

The Carnaval de Nice opens on February 15th, running through February 29th. While I’ve attended plenty, I hate to miss it if I can help it. The suitcases are going to be busy because as soon as we return from Madrid, I’ll be taping episode #42 of House Hunters International, then a day later boarding a TGV for Nice so as not to miss the last weekend of Carnaval festivities. This year’s theme is “Roi de la Mode” and guess who are the kings? “Bien sûr” Karl Lagerfeld and Yves St. Laurent. It’s sure to be a colorful and fun blast of confetti and music! There’s also the Fête du Citron in Menton that starts the 15th, too, and it wraps up the same weekend. You’ve never seen so many lemons and oranges in one place in your life! We’re talking about 140 tons of fruit, 750,000 rubber bands to hold them into place, and 15 tons of metal to make 200,000 visitors happy. On top of it all, it smells great! So, don’t miss it if you can help it. I promise you, a trip to Menton will not be regretted.

Just this week I decided not to miss my 50th high school reunion in New Orleans in early May, so I booked a flight to be there for only a few days. The school, John F. Kennedy High, doesn’t even exist anymore. Most of these people I haven’t had any contact within all these years, but a few have reconnected via Facebook — even one of my teachers — and one or two have visited Paris. This is the first reunion I will have attended, so I’m greatly looking forward to reliving a bit of the past with such long-time friends while eating fresh boiled seafood and some time with my family.

June is already programmed with a trip to the island of Lesbos in Greece with my daughter as one of our annual “girls’ getaways.” We have discovered that if we don’t go away for a few days, just us girls, to have quality mother-daughter time fit into our busy lives, we feel seriously deprived. Lesbos is the third largest island in Greece and it is reported to be one of the most beautiful. Our friends who will be there waiting for us have already planned a boat trip and other explorations on the island.

That excursion ends just one day before our annual “Meet the Authors” event in Nice on June 20th, so be sure to put this on your agenda, too. Run by Ella Dyer, author of Nice in Nice (Nahys in Nis — to quote Ella), with me acting as emcee. It’s 2.5 hours of hearing from some of our favorite authors, having a chance to buy their books, and have them signed. It will be in a new venue this year, so stay tuned for more information.

In August I head for a solid week of sun and surf on the island of Corsica during which you will NOT hear from me. The rest will be greatly needed in preparation for October’s Living and Investing in France 3.5-day conference in Nice and 4.5-day tour to Provence October 18-25. We’re formulating the details now, so stay tuned for more information, but if you want to be on our mailing list, just click here.

In the meantime, I’ll still be writing three publications a week (Parler Paris, Parler Nice and French Property Insider) (, holding our monthly Après Midi coffee/cocktail gatherings (be sure to come the second Tuesday of every month), consulting with clients on their real estate adventures and desire to move to France (what I really do most of the time!) and having fun in the City of Light and on the Côte d’Azur with friends.

Oops, did I forget anything? Oh yeah…in my spare time, I’m working on a new website and writing a memoir. Whew!

Nope, I don’t want to miss a thing if I can help it. Do you?

A la prochaine…

Adrian Leeds - writing in Paris, France

Adrian Leeds
Adrian Leeds Group

(writing in Paris)



The Adrian Leeds Group

Ella Dyer

P.S. To look into our Après Midi future, visit that page for who will be speaking next and what their presentations will be about. And plan to attend them all!


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