With Spring just two days away, you can practically hear the French singing, I love Paris in the Springtime, I love Paris in the Fall. Yes, Spring has arrived in Paris and most of France for that matter. And, while the French are busy picking daisies and chatting over cafe au lait, you may be wondering, are they even feeling the effects of this global recession? The answer is yes. Like most of Europe, many reports indicate that France is entering into a recession, the recession that the US has been experiencing for months.
But, in spite of the recession, the French seem to be quite upbeat this Spring. In fact, a recent survey by Le Parisien newspaper, found that 2 out of 3 French were optimistic about the future and satisfied with their lives. How can this be? Well, in a booming economy, one might associate life happiness or satisfaction with lavish trips or excessive purchases. By contrast, a poor economy might actually help us put things into perspective or redefine our priorities. This may be what the French, and even Americans, are experiencing.
The survey showed that the French positive attitude about life stems from things that many Americans, who are struggling financially, can relate to. The French draw their greatest satisfaction from loved ones and experiences, including their children (61%), friends (33%), and leisure activities (23%). And, they say the best moment of their day is spending time with their family in the evening, followed by waking up next to the person they love.
To me, the French attitude is the classic idea of taking lemons and making lemonade – with a French twist of course. For others, the French attitude may seem too unrealistic, or even idealistic, at this point in time. But, even if you can’t be optimistic about the country’s or your personal economic future, you need not be French to look forward to the Spring.
Here are just a few of the things I’m looking forward to most….
10 Things I’m looking forward to most about Spring
- Opening all of the windows in my house
- Eating lunch or dinner outside
- The smell of BBQ from an outdoor grill (whether it’s mine or someone else’s)
- Not wearing a coat
- Wearing sandals and capris
- Listening to Jimmy Buffet and Bob Marley on my Ipod, without having to hide it
- The start of major league baseball – yeah!
- Having a Starbucks Frappuccino without getting strange looks because it’s below freezing outside
- Walking to the local cafe for lunch
- Having the topic of every work conversation NOT be the cold weather
What are you most looking forward to about Spring?