It was Friday evening 9pm, Mila (our 2 year old daughter) had just gone to sleep and my wife and I sat exhausted from another working week enjoying an overly priced glass of shiraz. We were living in a beautiful townhouse near the beach in the eastern suburbs of Sydney. As it did quite often our conversation turned to work and how we were ever going to be able to afford a suitable place to call our own in Sydney. You see we were both earning above the median salaries yet the affordability of a house to raise our family was still out of reach. I was working as a commercial diver and my wife in management. We were both working 50 plus hours per week and although we had nothing to wish for it was difficult to save the remainder of what we needed for a down payment.
My wife is a French national, so late in November 2017 we made the decision to make the move to France for a couple of years and see if we could make a go of it there. Over the next few months we organised paperwork for the French administration as well as logistics for shipping what we didn’t sell of our worldly belongings. We knew the move would be more impactful to my capacity to earn than my wife’s due to the language barrier I would face so I took up level A1 French lessons each Saturday for 2 months prior to the move. On top of this I realised I would not be able to work as a commercial diver for obvious reasons given the language barrier and so I studied in unison with French to gain my personal training certificate. I’d always played sports at high levels from a young age, enjoyed keeping fit and encouraging others to do so as well so it seemed like a natural progression.
At the end of March 2018 we landed in France to begin our new lives.
Well you’ve probably heard that the French administration can be a long and drawn out process and from my experience this rings true. It took in my case 3 months for integration meetings with the OFII and as I require a carte professionelle for work it’s been another 3 months from there.
Realistically you can expect to be waiting quite a while to work if you are a job seeker or have not lined anything up prior to your move. Having said that everyone I dealt with during the process were friendly and professional and helpful. If there is one piece of advice that I can pass on, after my experiences, it would be to become as proficient as you can in the French language prior to moving.
Nothing about the integration process is as difficult as a 24hr plane flight with a 2 year old and those of you with kids will know what I mean. So from my account there is nothing to worry about, just be sure to have copies of all your documents.
It was a gamble to embark on a new career path at my stage in life but one that I am happy to say is beginning to pay off and one which may not have come to fruition had I not been at this stage in life anyway.
In Australia fitness is a “buzz” word and any given morning of the week, rain hale or shine almost every park and public outdoor area is a wash with people engaging in group fitness classes which is really great to see for so many reasons. We tend to live such sedentary lives now days in a climate- controlled zone between the house, car and office, so it really is a refreshing site to see people take back some control of their activity and lives.
During our previous visits to France this same type of exercise (boot-camps and cross-training) does not seem to exist at the level I was used to. Not that people are more inactive here, quite the contrary actually as the French population are very active in sports, cycling and football however cross training is much different.
OZ-360 fitness was born in Australia with the intention of providing group and personal training to those clients wanting to stay trim, maintain health and live a fully functional life into their more senior years. OZ-360 sessions, be they group or personal aim to bring fundamental movements to the table in order to facilitate proper human movement which is vitally important to counteract ageing and the issues we often see resulting from the sedentary lifestyles we have become accustomed to living.
We are is based in Pessac, we have around 20 clients (French and English speaking) training with us in group sessions now and a few whom prefer personal training. We are able to provide all formats of training be it group, personal, online, or corporate for team building sessions. With Christmas just around the corner we have offers available at www.oz-360.com so please visit the site or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on how we can help you.