I loved talking to Paule Miller (38 years old) – he has such a beautiful, inspirational life story! He started from scratch in a foreign country – moved from UK to Norway – and succeeded in transforming his passion for gardening not only into a profession but also into a way of life. In the charming city of Ålesund Paule’s work is highly appreciated. Also, thanks to his work, Ålesund International School has the first Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) supported school garden in Norway.
Paule lives in Norway for 15 years already, and he remembers laughing that at the beginning he didn’t even intend to stay. He came from America, where he was working in Disney World when he had met a Norwegian girl. “I always had a dream of not living in UK, always thought of travelling, doing jobs”, he says, but when he reached Ålesund the plan was to move elsewhere after a while, perhaps to Italy or Spain.
He still remembers the first impression when he got here, in september – mountains and the sea viewed from the airplane. “It was unbelievable. I was very lucky to land in Ålesund, the most beautiful city in Norway”, he says.
The beginning in Norway and the love of his life
It wasn’t easy at all at the beginning. Back then, the city was not as international as it is today, people spoke Norwegian everywhere and did not feel quite comfortable to speak English, especially to a guy coming straight from UK. Without the language, was not easy to find a job.
But he learnt it, in time, started making friends, things changed step by step. Started working in a car company, then as a bartender in a hotel – kept both jobs for a while.
Meanwhile, he and his Norwegian girlfriend broke up. One night, when Facebook was at very beginning, he got a friend request from his girlfriend before moving to America. They started talking, she came to visit him and finally stayed. Today, 10 years after, they are very happy and parents of two wonderful children.
English gardener, with passion and love
Gardening is an old passion – and one day he just decided to give it a try. So he attended a distance learners program run by The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) from the UK. “It took me 2 years to complete my RHS exams, I had to study at night and sit my timed exams at the British Consulate which took a lot of organizing.
It gave me the confidence to open up my own company, with a greater understanding of plant health, the root environment, propagation and horticultural techniques, I could understand better garden management”, Paule says.
Today, his work is highly appreciated in the area. He works with passion and joy every day, loves what he is doing, and people see this and ask for his services. “When you own your own business you can dream as big as you want, invest in what you think”, Paule says.
Inspiration for children
And the story doesn’t stop here. Thanks to his work, Ålesund International School has the first RHS supported school garden in Norway.
The RHS Campaign for School Gardening inspires and supports schools to provide children with gardening opportunities to enhance their skills, including confidence, teamwork, communication, as well as literacy and numeracy skills and boost their development.
Follow your dream
Paule keeps on learning all the time, and says happily about his work that “it’s a job that makes you forget that you are actually doing a job”.
A good advice for those who, maybe, don’t have the courage to start all by themselves? “Find people who can change your mind, help you discover, find that courage. You don’t know you have this courage until you discover. Find people who do the same thing, who inspire you, who have the same interests and see what opportunities come. And use the social media correctly – in your benefit”, he says.
PHOTOS FROM PERSONAL ARCHIVE
Do you know a very special person? Someone who has followed his dream, built it piece by piece, with passion, energy and lot of soul? An usual, simple person who did something in life, who you can identify with, who can be, for others, a source of inspiration? Tell me about that person and let’s tell the others his/her beautiful story. Write me at email@example.com, here, on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.