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A Little Girl’s Dream

My mother always assumed that having a daughter was synonymous with dresses and playing princess. Then I showed up, and went through phases where only wore pants, came back from birthday parties covered in mud because I HAD to go out and play soccer with the boys, and secretly signed up for the baseball team. I don’t ever remember wanting to be a doctor or an astronaut, but I had a plan.

I envisioned a big house with a lot of land. Chickens to give us eggs, cows for milk, and whatever else we needed to get bacon and all the other good stuff. My husband and I would be fully self-sufficient, him a lawyer and doctor and me a vet and teacher. Our parents would each live in a nearby – but not too close – cottage so we could tend to their needs too. The kids would be home-schooled and hang out with their grandparents, and we would have everything we needed right there. Yes, I have always been an optimist.

Things did not go quite as planned. For one, I found out a vet had to put animals to sleep if they could not heal them (thanks, mom). That may seem obvious, but to an idealistic seven year old, it was a deal breaker. I also did not study to become a teacher, and instead of marrying a doctor lawyer, I married a watchmaker! Oops. But I am jumping ahead.

Over the years, I started horse-riding and to say that I love it falls short. It centers me. I love the challenge of working with a horse to get them to do what you want and make it look easy (well, that’s the theory). So when I was about to graduate from university and quickly beginning to loathe the question “what will you do when you graduate?” I started saying I wanted to become a cowboy. And I realized I was only 50% kidding.

When Francois and I met (a story in and of itself), while I was doing my best to ignore the signs that we were getting along famously and on our way to a – gasp! – relationship*, I mentioned to him that I was planning an early retirement on a ranch. I am not sure what I expected his response to be, but he took me completely by surprise (neither the first or last time, as it turns out). He thought for a second and simply said “could I have a vegetable garden?”

We both thought we were 99% joking. But then we got married and now we are planning an 8 month honeymoon that will segue into us going to live on a farm, and that is what this blog is all about.

*Yes, I was a commitmentphobe.

Cet article n’est disponible qu’en anglais. Il parle du rêve d’enfance de Shahnaz et comment nous en sommes arrivés à vouloir vivre dans une ferme.




  • Laure Bourdes Aron
    11 May 2016

    Shnooz, j’ai beaucoup aimé ton texte ! et cette photo de Bea, c’est très poignant.. avec ce léger sourire si caractéristique…et une foule de souvenirs. C’est vrai qu’elle était un peu spleen que tu ne portes pas plus de robes, et un jour ou nous nous promenions ( à Paris ou à Palma ?) elle t’avait acheté quelque chose de bleu marine chez Zara, se demandant si tu allais le porter..Mais elle était aussi très fière de tout ce que tu faisais, de tes études de la musique et m’en parlait beaucoup…
    Quant à toi, sur la photo, trop mimi avec ton air fripon plein de sous entendus, clairement en dessous de tout ce que tu allais devenir…xx

  • Nili
    25 May 2016

    Shnooz, I loved this post and completely identify with the little girl who didn’t want to wear dresser and preferred to play soccer and get muddy! I love what you and Francois are embarking upon, and can’t wait to follow your adventures! I wish had the guts to jump out of the rat race and do something similar, every time life gets to be too much I dream about starting my own organic farm… Maybe I can come visit yours instead? Wishing you and a awesome journey and sending you much love xxoo


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