Yes, I am moving.
Can you guess where? I'll give you a hint.
|Author of photo: Den Nation.|
Do you remember these guys?
That's right, I'm moving to none other than...
|Author of photo: Den Nation.|
That's right, we're going back. In exactly one month. Well, actually now it's less than a month since it's already the early hours of June 2nd and we're leaving on the 30th.
Yes, there is a but.
This is a move that I am not entirely on board with. I have discussed this with my husband and he understands my feelings. That is not to say that I don't want to go because I definitely do want to go. There is so much that I have yet to explore up north like Latvia, Norway and Russia, places which are difficult to get to from Bordeaux, and I actually like learning Danish and living in Copenhagen. However, I don't really want to leave Bordeaux. The more I think about it, the more I feel that living in Bordeaux suits me. The thing is, though, I have already talked about this and you all know that I have just been floating along in Bordeaux (as a lot of you living in France are doing as well, so I'm not special in this regard) and in Copenhagen I felt alive it that explains anything. But... I really do love living here: the wine, the countryside, the city, the food, the weather, my friends here, my apartment, cycling everywhere, etc, etc. I don't feel some external force pulling me to leave Bordeaux.
Luckily, my husband is keeping his job here. That's the good thing about being a fonctionnaire in France - you can put your job 'on hold'. So we are going off to Denmark for 2 years, but we have the option of coming back after one year and we can even stay in Denmark for up to 5 years. After 5 years we must come back here if my husband wishes to keep his job. Honestly, though, things could go either way - we could really miss it here and want to come back at all costs or we could like Denmark so much that we wouldn't want to come back here. The thing is, working in France at the university involves dealing with a lot of paperwork and unproductive meetings. My husband is a scientist and wants to mainly focus on his work and he thinks that Denmark can offer him that. It is true, the position in Denmark is a promotion for him - he'll be at a higher grade, be paid more (even with the higher cost of living in Denmark, he'll still be earning more than in France) and have almost half of the teaching hours that he has in Bordeaux.
Yes, I said that I like learning Danish and living in Copenhagen. But do I really want to focus my attention on learning Danish? Maybe I just want to continue improving my French instead of continuing with Danish. After all, I know that it would take me years to get my Danish up to the same level as my French or Italian. Do I really want to put in all that effort?
And sure, Copenhagen is a nice city and things are easy there and relaxed. But I do like living in France, as unorganized and stressful as it may be at times.
Anyway... there's more...
A few days after we went to Denmark and my husband signed his work contract back in March, I received a call that I have been waiting years for. For the past few years I have been applying for a job (the same job) and have been rejected twice. This year I almost didn't apply (you can only apply once a year) since I was going to Denmark, but decided to apply anyway just in case. Well, of course the just in case happened this year. I still don't have the job and won't know until September if I have the job or not, but in March I went through the police check which involved going down to the police station for an interview. The other years I was never called for the interview. Of course this doesn't mean anything as they could be conducting police checks on a bunch of applicants and then pick from the lot, but something tells me that come September it is going to be a yes. Just because I am supposed to leave.
The job would involve me being physically here some of the time. I wouldn't be an employee - I would be an on-call freelancer. What I need to do is to get in touch with other people who already have this job and ask them how often they get called and at what notice. I think that commuting from Denmark would be crazy, but if it were only every now and again I could handle it. However, working under this status would make me more attractive as a freelancer in France and I could more easily find more freelancing jobs with other companies or organizations. But not if I'm in Denmark - I would physically need to be present in France for this kind of work even if I am working from home. This would be a huge opportunity for me here - if I was hired I'm pretty sure that I could finally have the career that I've always wanted.
So what should I do? Nothing for the moment of course as they have not said yes. I am relying on the slowness of everything here to work in my favour. If I do get a yes, let's just hope that I can stretch out the process as long as possible and buy myself some time.
I don't want to become a weekend couple. With this kind of distance, though, I couldn't even be a weekend couple actually. My husband has a lot of flexibility with his work and I could be flexible as well with this job, but I really don't see myself going back and forth. I would hate that, I am sure of it. I am happiest with my husband at my side. But I have felt like a failure in France professionally for far too long to let this opportunity pass.
I am going to Canada this summer. I'm going to enjoy my summer with my family and friends and try not to think about the job. For now I am moving to Denmark and if I get a positive response, I'll have to re-examine my options at that time. This is not the explanation for the doubts that I raised above, however, as I had doubts about moving back to Denmark even before the possibility of this job came up.
So, will it be Bordeaux?
|La Grosse Cloche gate in Bordeaux. Author of photo: Den Nation.|
|Rosenborg Castle in Copenhagen. Author of photo: Den Nation.|
Only time will tell...