Re: Effort. Or perhaps the French understand that once a certain standard of living has been obtained that the quality of life becomes more important than the endless pursuit of more and more money, which doesn’t buy one happiness but will bring on stress and an early heart attack instead.
It’s actually been mind-opening to see things from the opposite end of the spectrum. Moving to Korea I discovered that the standard work week was 5.5 days: Monday through Friday, plus Saturday morning. They’re trying to catch up to a Western standard of living (or at least a Japanese standard). Coming to S’pore, the work week was Monday through Friday, plus every other Saturday morning. A few years ago, the gov’t abandoned the Saturday morning shift for gov’t employees (with a few businesses doing so as well). I don’t expect S’pore to emulate the French work week anytime soon, especially as one prominent CEO started complaining recently that S’pore’s economy was going down the tubes due to the loss of Saturday morning work shifts. (Not true but everyone has to complain about something! 😉 )
Whenever I learn that a different society has a different work week that doesn’t allow for a two day weekend I’m a little shocked. I’ve been to one’s before, but I’m always like, whew, we need two days to rest from the week (though I can’t remember the last time I had a proper weekend).
As an aside, my apologies for not writing Quran Read-A-Long last week. I’m in the process of moving from San Francisco to Atlanta and finding an apartment and haven’t had a free second for my usual responsibilities. I’ll get back to it as soon as I can – I miss it!