Principled Money Posts #53: ‘Paris is growing on me’ edition
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Remember how some time ago I was telling you that I am very hard pressed to see what do others see in Paris. I never likes Paris much – for me it was always a dirty city, covered in dog poop. Let me take this a step further: I never really understood how did the French got the reputation of people who know about food and wine.
Yes, I’ve been to some great restaurants in Paris but they are always outrageously expensive. As to wine, you always get what you pay for but France is the only place on this planet where I got poisoned by a bottle of wine (a glass from the bottle, I hasten to add).
Anyhow, I have never been keen on ‘frilly’, made-up Paris; Teutonic Vienna and ‘breathless’ New York are much more my scene. Until last weekend!
For me, places are made of memories and feelings and last weekend almost completely changed my feelings about Paris; and France.
I was invited to give a key note on the way in which changing the social conditions of knowledge changes (or not as the case may be) knowledge itself. This aside, the conference was in the very centre of Paris and the organisers were kind enough to put me in a very nice hotel; which is rather exceptional for Paris – just like food and wine, hotels are generally overpriced and not particularly nice.
Then on Friday, John flew in and we went for dinner with some friends who have just had their first grand-son. This was lovely to see the whole family with additions – our friends’ daughters now all have partners. And the baby was so sweet.
The next morning, another friend picked us up at the hotel and we drove to their house in the country; a place about an hour and a half drive from Paris called Marsangy. The first thing we did after arriving there was to go shopping for food. Naturally the butchers and the bakery were impressive, but this was so much more so:
What you are looking at is a place where organic vegetables are grown and sold; it is a one household business where people drive from many neighbouring villages and little towns. Their tomatoes were divine.
By 11.30 our hosts, two other couples and John and I were ready for some wine tasting. Did I mention this one? Our hosts have vineyards in Burgundy and make wine. When I first heard about that I thought they make wine like my grand-father did: for himself and his close family. Not so; our hosts, apart from being scholars, make organic wine and export it in quite a few countries around the world (including the US and Japan).
As I said, food was exquisite, the wine divine and the company stimulating. And the weather cooperated: it rained almost all weekend so we could devote ourselves to food, wine and naps. This made me think though, that to have great life one doesn’t need to be rich, one just need to have rich friends.
Now I am converted; I can see the true beauty of France and even appreciate Paris a bit better. The only downside is that Pauline and I missed each other by about three miles and four hours. Next time (and a very good excuse to go to Guatemala).
The weekend was a wonderful diversion but not enough to detract me from keeping an eye on the blogosphere. Here are some articles that made me think.
Daisy over at the Prairie Eco-Thrifter published an article on the ‘deadly sins of personal finance. She made some good points and I would agree that some of the major mistakes people make where their finances are concerned are about being impulsive, consumerist and short-sighted. There is more, but these are the three I like most. This made me think about the ‘deadly sins’ of personal finance as an industry and I can feel an article on The Money Principle coming.
Personal finance as an industry thrives on advice about building wealth. Mr. Money Mustache may have just put us all out of business with one article on his blog. You want to know how to build wealth in about 1,000 words? Go and read this article! Love it or hate it, he is right.
Honestly, these bloggers; one takes their eyes off for couple of days and …they have missed something wonderful and magic. This is how I felt when I visited Save. Spend. Splurge. again. BIG NEWS: my friend mochimac is having a baby and I hope that you’ll all join me in saying a big CONGRATULATIONS. Oh, and mochimac, I was very relieved to hear that you won’t be turning into a ‘mommy blogger’. I am also going to make macaroons tonight (first time but how hard could it be) to celebrate.
Krantcents is someone who rarely fails to make me think; and it doesn’t matter whether or not I agree with him (sometimes I don’t). Recently he asked ‘what have you accomplished…‘. This made me realised again that this year has been great – two big, fat goals achieved – but that I have been feeling a bit ‘goaled out’ for some time now. Time for a new focus; and, no, we have not forgotten the five year, financial independence plan.
Procrastination is not all bad! Gosh, it feels like I always knew this one, it is just that I allowed myself to become a victim of mass hypnosis. You want to know what the benefits of procrastination are? Go read this article by Erin at L Bee and the Money Tree.
Last but not least, Michelle at Making Sense of Cents published the things she is not prepared to do for money. My absolute favourite is ‘re-use toilet paper’. How the hell does one do that? It is gross! Oh, and I probably won’t do any of the other stuff either.
Now I would like to share with you two blogs that I just found and have a bloggy crush on:
First is Anna’s blog And Then we Saved. It is not only visually stunning but also has a lot of useful ‘how to’ manuals. Go check it out!
Next is a blog called The Altucher Confidential. One word: WOW. In fact I am not sure how did I miss this one for so long (probably tells something about all the noise in the blogosphere).
How is The Money Principle doing?
Over the last couple of weeks articles on The Money Principle have been included in the following personal finance carnivals:
Yakezie Carnival at Money Life and More
Carn. of Financial Planning at Mom and Dad Money
Fin. Carn. for Young Adults at Degrees and Debt
Carn of MoneyPros at Money Wise Pastor
Carn. of Fin. Camaraderie at Frugal Rules
For this we are grateful!
This is all for now, my friends. Speak soon.