Wanderwoman Diaries: Dancer living the dream
Welcome back, everyone! Hope everyone is acclimating back to life this first week of rentrée. I just returned back to France after a rejuvenating holiday sailing and am ready to get back into gear! To commemorate our return to Paris thought it would be nice to feature another US expat living “La vie est belle”.
Meet Shelby, another American girl who followed her dreams and landed in Paris. She shares some of her story below.
How many countries have you lived in?
I was born and raised in America but was fortunate enough to spend the past year living in France.
How many countries have you visited?
I have visited 25 countries! (Only 170 to go!)
What brought you to your current country?
France was always a dream destination to visit but I never imagined I would actually get the opportunity live here. I started dancing at the age of two and continued on all the way to college. I then attended performing arts college, and continue to pursue a career in dance. There happened to an audition in Toronto, Canada for a performing opportunity in Paris so I went and got it! Six months later I moved to Paris!
What is your favorite thing about living here?
I am in love with the culture and way of life! There is such a strong belief in work/life balance and spending time with your friends and family! I love that any time of the day you could go and get a café and croissant or an Aperol Spritz!
What is your least favorite thing about living here?
On the flip side the culture is also my least my favorite part! It is super hard to get important things done! Many offices have strange hours or insane amounts of paperwork. Sometimes certain documents can only be filled out through snail mail! It’s 2019!
What country would like to live in or visit next?
I have spent some time in Hong Kong but would love to live there for a bit. The city is super vibrant and incredibly multicultural. It would be amazing to live in such a unique city.
What fuels your wanderlust? What inspires you?
When I am traveling and exploring is when I feel the most free and alive. That feeling drives my wanderlust. The feeling of being somewhere completely new, away from everything I know, without a care in the world. I suddenly become more open, accepting, loving, and happy! Connecting with people from around the world and realizing no matter how different our lives may be, we still have so much in common. Seeing museums, artifacts, scenery, and history from all over the world. These moments fuel my wanderlust. The goal is to make this big world feel that much smaller!
What advice would you give to fellow travelers/expats?
Do it! If you have any sense of doubt and fear. Do it! Once you get there take advantage of every moment. Experience everything and see everything. Don’t wait until next week or tomorrow because nothing is guaranteed! When you’re struggling and confused or frustrated or even home sick, take a moment to step outside yourself and realize how amazing your current life and experiences are! Remember that what you wished for at one point is now the reality!