Et alors… quoi de neuf?

My long hiatus has been unintentional.

Sort of.

Truth: What is going on in the U.S. has thrown me for a serious loop. When I began my blog years ago, I wanted to write about the often funny, always interesting, and sometimes exasperating differences between French and American culture, and to share anecdotes from my own life on what it’s like to be in a bicultural, bilingual marriage with kids. I enjoyed comparing our two cultures and poking fun at each of them.

November 2016: suddenly, those differences don’t seem so funny or cute anymore. Many of them seem pathetic and even dangerous. Even the smallest topics I consider writing about feel hypercharged. I, like so many others, feel like a stranger in a strange land in my own country. I often find myself defending the US to my foreign friends, and I’m weary of trying to defend what I don’t identify with nor agree with.

I always intended this to be a personal blog where I shared my story, my family, my experiences. While I’ve touched on politics, it was never intended to be a political blog. But isn’t the personal also political? Can any of us afford to ignore the political these days? To pretend it isn’t a part of us, a part of our culture? And of course, deeply important to the course our country and the world takes? Wouldn’t it be irresponsible to pretend otherwise?

I struggle, too, to find balance between actively doing my part to make the world a better place and still finding time to enjoy life – those little moments with my kids, the joy I find in traveling, the laughs I share with friends. I consider posting a few photos from a recent trip and I pause, feeling guilty that here I am, lucky enough to travel around the world with my kids, while others in my home country are suffering unimaginably.

So, I’ve spent much time wondering over this last year and a half how to continue this blog.

But I’ve decided to try. Rick Steves writes about Travel as a Political Act. My experiences traveling, meeting and talking with people, even the times I’ve been confronted with angry, vocal locals once they find out where I’m from, have made me a better person, of that I have no doubt. My mind has opened, my world view expanded. My ability to empathize and to see a perspective other than my own improves each time.

So, I will continue on. Some posts may be fluffy travel posts full of pictures of gorgeous locales. There will still be funny anecdotes about the culture clashes of being in a French-American family. Some posts may be political. I may lose followers. And that’s okay. C’est la vie. C’est comme ça.

7 thoughts on “Et alors… quoi de neuf?

  1. Bravo!

    On Mon, Jul 23, 2018 at 9:17 PM A French American Life wrote:

    > A French American Life posted: “My long hiatus has been unintentional. > Sort of. Truth: What is going on in the U.S. has thrown me for a serious > loop. When I began my blog years ago, I wanted to write about the often > funny, always interesting, and sometimes exasperating differences bet” >

  2. Well French American too,living in France but heck politics is great in France too especially nowdays so is a balance act. Just talk to educated persons that is all; Salut!

    • True – the crazy seems to be spreading. At least politics is not a taboo subject in France – people argue over dinner and leave still friends all the time. In fact, this cultural difference is the subject of a post I’ve drafted!

  3. Thank you for sharing your thoughts—I feel the same way about my blog right now. It’s hard not to discuss and process what the United States is going through. It’s also hard not to compare it to other cultures that you’re familiar with. I look forward to learning more about your thoughts and discussing them together. Merci beaucoup!

  4. Bravo Carol, well put. Hope you are doing great. I’m settling into Eugene and enjoying the great environment up here.
    Mark

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