Who Am I?


Wel­come to Cor­rer Es Mi Des­tino! I hope you will enjoy read­ing the sto­ries and fol­low­ing our adven­tures in Canada and abroad. Grab your­self a cup of tea or a cof­fee and let me intro­duce myself. I promise I’ll keep it short and sweet.

I’m Juli­ette. You can call me “Zhu”—that’s my Chi­nese name (this 珠, not that 猪—that means “pig”, mine is “pearl”!). Yes, I am aware of the fact that I am not even remotely Chi­nese. I do speak Man­darin though, but it’s a long story.

I was born and raised in Nantes, France. At the age of 16, I trav­eled solo to China and I caught a bad case of wan­der­lust. After grad­u­at­ing from high school, I spent a few years back­pack­ing the world, first as a solo trav­eler and then with Feng, my travel partner/husband.

Even­tu­ally, I some­how ended up in Canada in 2004. I have been liv­ing in Canada’s national cap­i­tal, Ottawa, ever since. I was granted per­ma­nent res­i­dent sta­tus in 2005 (my appli­ca­tion was processed in only five months!) and I became a Cana­dian cit­i­zen on July 3, 2009. I have dual cit­i­zen­ship, French and Cana­dian. You can read my full immi­gra­tion story here.

Immi­grat­ing to Canada and embrac­ing life in the “new world” has been a great adven­ture. As a clue­less twenty-something who didn’t speak Eng­lish and had a lot of mis­con­cep­tions about North Amer­ica, I did expe­ri­ence a cer­tain level of cul­ture shock, which prompted me to start this web­site. Note that I still don’t get how Cana­di­ans can walk around wear­ing shorts and t-shirts when it’s barely above 0ºC. But hey, I adapted! I even know which hockey team to cheer for now—hint, not the Leafs.

From 2005 to 2009, I worked as a French as sec­ond lan­guage teacher—I have always found it ironic I ended up teach­ing French after learn­ing Chi­nese for 12 years. In 2009, I started work­ing as a free­lance English-to-French trans­la­tor as well as a bilin­gual copy­writer, edi­tor and proof­reader. I’m a self-described “word nerd” and I love my job (except on Mon­day mornings—same for you, right?).

On my spare time, I’m also a trav­eler and a pho­tog­ra­pher, with an inter­est in street and travel photography.

Oh, and I am a mother too! Mark Floyd, our Canadian-Chinese-French son, was born on Octo­ber 12, 2012. Now that I have finally fully adopted my new coun­try, I am adapt­ing to being a mother. Most days, I need coffee.

I chose to set­tle in Canada because I love this mul­ti­cul­tural coun­try and because I wanted to belong somewhere—I’ve never felt French enough in France. Yet, even after being adopted by Canada and embrac­ing moth­er­hood, I still need to travel. Was I made to set­tle some­where? Part of me enjoys life at “home” but deep down, I just want to pack my stuff and explore other con­ti­nents, sleep in long dis­tance buses and hos­tels and wake up in a new city every day.

We are bohemian, we are trav­el­ers. A mul­ti­cul­tural fam­ily always on the go.

Yeah, well, I am not the eas­i­est per­son to live with. I know.

Cor­rer es mi des­tino… isn’t it?

Zhu (珠)