« Les Vosges, one of my favorite spots in France » Jaime
Thanks to his babysitting job at Mômji, and thanks to the Coflocs team, Jaime managed to make a solo trip, to discover France, his host country. We have collected his testimony to inspire you for your next vacation.
Hi Jaime, can you tell us more about yourself?
My name is Jaime, I'm 24. I’m Spanish (from Alicante, in South East Spain) and I’ve been studying at the Sorbonne for two years. I speak Spanish, English and French. When I came to live in Paris, money quickly became an issue, especially in regards to rent.
And among my foreign student friends, some had heard of Mômji, a company that offers babysitting jobs in foreign languages or language teacher jobs.
So I applied for the job, did the interview and started babysitting a 7 year old boy for several months, in Spanish.
Can you tell us more about your role as a babysitter?
My job was to babysit, but only in Spanish. The goal is to get kids to learn words in a foreign language at a very young age. For this, the agency provided me with ideas of activities to do in Spanish.
What did you learn as a babysitter?
First, I learned that children assimilate very quickly. From the moment they start learning whilehaving fun, they ask for more!
This babysitting experience was very rewarding for me. I really felt like I was helping someone to become more mature.
When you are a foreigner in a country, you feel alone and ignored. There, I made friends with the family, and of course with Thomas, the child I looked after.
It was also an opportunity to learn more about French culture and have access to negociated deals in Paris.
But for that, Mômji also helped me a lot, thanks to their Wine & Cheese evenings and their blog articles.
How did you hear about Les Coflocs ?
I really like Paris, but it's a bit noisy and the air is full of pollution. People don't take too much time to enjoy life.
For a long time, I had heard about the different regions in France, the diversity of its landscapes, its countryside. I wanted to know more about the country I lived in.
Thanks to my babysitter service at Mômji, I was able to put some money aside.
Then, a friends told me about the Coflocs, two men who make great inspirational videos. I'm a travel enthusiast, so I went on their website.
I remember the first video I watched: A weekend in France, where we can see a couple doing sustainable tourism. It is a web series launched by the Association of Actors of Sustainable Tourism.
It’s exactly the kind of tourism that attracts me: I don’t want to destroy the environment when I’m going somewhere. Unfortunately, in many countries the tourism industry is destroying everything it touches...
In this video, several activities were recommended: bungee jumping, cycling in the forest or in the mountains, rafting in the rapids ...
The natural heritage of France is incredible! I really recommend that young foreigners leave the capital or other big cities to see what is going on beyond. Worldwide, when we talk about France, most people only see the Eiffel Tower and the luxury shops on the Champs-Élysées...unfortunately.
Were you inspired by Les Coflocs for your road trip?
Yes, of course! I went to the Vosges, and more specifically to the park mentioned in one of their videos, which is called Bol d'Air.
Once there, I was able to do zip line (tyrolienne in French), a first experience for me! You are attached to a cable, more than 30m from the ground and you really feel like a bird! Thrills guaranteed! We also had time to breathe and enjoy the pine forests around us. In terms of nature, it almost feels like Switzerland or Germany.
What I also loved about this park was the accommodation: small treehouses, instead of a big hotel.
Any other inspirations thanks to Les Coflocs ?
I managed to motivate a group of friends to go cycling the Belledonne chain. It’s a massive mountain in the Alps. If it weren't for Les Coflocs, I would never have heard of it. You can also go through a hiking trail, the GR738, visit castles, nature as far as the eye can see, and breathtaking landscapes. A good bowl of fresh air!
Any last words?
Thank you Mômji, for allowing me to settle in France and share my culture of origin. Thank you also for allowing me to discover this beautiful country.
And thank you to Les Coflocs, for all this inspiration. Thanks to you, I really became aware of everything there is to do in this country, to go and meet this magnificent nature with my foreign friends. I am very happy to have been able to leave Paris thanks to you!