by Melinda Gallo

Between two cities

I realized this morning when I went for a walk up to Piazzale Michelangiolo how different my life is when I知 in Florence and when I知 in Paris. When I was in Paris, I went running every day and only took one day off. Now that I知 back in Florence, I went running the first day, took a day off and went for a walk two days in a row. I like how in Florence I have more time to enjoy the day and take it a little slower.

When I知 in Paris, my life is structured. I wake up at 6:30am, go for a run, get ready for work, walk to the m騁ro station, read a book on the m騁ro during my commute, walk to the office from the m騁ro station, work a couple of hours, have lunch with my colleagues, work some more, and then go home. My time seems almost calculated to the minute during my work weeks in Paris. I don稚 feel I have a lot of free time except when I run, take the m騁ro, and in the few hours when I知 home after work.

When I知 in Florence, I wake up when I want to, which is usually around 7:30am. Each day, I decide if I want to run or go for a walk. I work at home and take a few breaks during the day, and can even take a nap if I feel like it. Sometimes I go for strolls through town, run errands, or shop for food. I don稚 have as much structure as I do in Paris. I feel freer and tend to do what feels best to me in the moment. At times, I don稚 feel like working in the morning and instead will work late into the night.

I prefer my life in Florence because I am able to follow my whims at any time. It is a great luxury to do what I feel like doing in the moment. However, in Paris I enjoy my structured work life because I get to live a different life than what I知 used to and socialize with my colleagues. It痴 a different environment for me because in Florence I work from home where all I have is email to communicate with people.

Both cities do allow me to appreciate the different facets of my life. When I am in each city, I embrace the life I am living. There are times I do wish I had more freedom in Paris, but I also sometimes miss my Parisian work environment in Florence.

In the end, I try to just enjoy the day I get to live because it痴 what I have. I appreciate both cities because each one feeds me differently. Now that I am back in Florence, I enjoy my freedom and bask in the beauty and joy of my beloved city.

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