Paris - Post Report Question and Answers
What do you wish you had known about this particular city/country before moving there?
We have a family home in France and felt very prepared to live here. We were not informed of the difficulties of living on the compound (not being able to have people on the compound, not being able to have any deliveries past the guard gate on the street, not being able to get emergency services to our apartment). - May 2022
I wish I had realized there would not be an embassy community like we are used to. Everyone has visitors and activities on their own schedule and you have to go out of your way to meet people and maintain friendships. There are clear cool kids cliques in the cafeteria. Those that meet one another for work regularly forget that there is a larger community that does not have the same information nor social invitations. - Sep 2021
French people are not rude as some Americans think, and the U.S.-French relationship is strong and generally friendly (nothing like it was in the early 2000s). I never sensed any kind of animosity toward Americans. However, I did find the French to be a bit insular, and surprisingly difficult to connect with beyond the level of acquaintances. I made a real effort to speak French and learn about the culture, but unfortunately I had only minimal success and eventually found myself giving up and turning toward other expats (especially other Europeans) more and more frequently. I had more trouble integrating in France than in any other country I've lived in. It's worth noting that Paris may be more difficult in this regard than the rest of country. Romance with the French was even more disappointing. - Jan 2018
I feel like I was prepared before I moved here since I had visited many times prior. - Aug 2015
I had previously lived here, so not many surprises. - Feb 2015