Paris, je t'aime
Paris Travel Blog› entry 11 of 12 › view all entries
On my second-to-last day in Paris, I sent a letter home to my friends and family. The entire time I'd been abroad, I wrote them at least once a week with stories and updates on my life in Paris, and it was time to write a goodbye letter. Since I wrote it while in the midst of leaving, it has all the raw emotion that I was feeling at the time instead of the watered down sentiment I might have written on my return. So here is that letter for you to enjoy, because I think it's the best way to show how I felt about my time in Paris:
Paris I love you.
I know you are all saying the same thing right now. "Don't be sad Meghan, you can always go back, we miss you, give it a little while, once you get all settled at home you'll be happy and energized with a whole new chapter in your life".
There are so many things I think about as I take my last looks around...I don't know when I'll come back. In a year? In ten years? I hope it's sooner than later. How can I NOT live here? There's that Gertrude Stein quote about Paris..."America is my country but Paris is my hometown". I feel what she's saying. I had to be on my own here more so than anywhere else in the world. Even in college my family was always a couple hours away. I never really had to do anything on my own...it was already done or someone else helped me take care of it.
What I love about Paris/Parisians:
-How when you get off the metro at Cité in the springtime, you're greeted with a gust of warm, flower-smelling air from the flower market just at the top of the stairs.
-How you can get fresh baguettes from the bakery on the corner right as they take them out of the oven because you've figured out their schedule.
-How I ran to the corner pharmacie to buy asprin for the lady who works at the internet place because I go in there so often she knows me.
-How you can see the Eiffel Tower from the Pont Neuf, and even in the rain at 11pm on a Tuesday it's magical when it sparkles.
-How on Rue de la Huchette there's a sandwich grec place every three steps, but the best ones are at the place on Rue St. Denis that stays open all day and all night.
-How the birds start chirping right as the metro opens at 5:30 in the morning.
-How you can either go home by 2 or stay out til 6 to catch the metro...because no one really takes the Noctilien (except for sometimes if it's raining or you're just too tired to make it til dawn).
-How the waiters at even the smallest neighborhood brasseries wear white shirts, black bow ties, black pants, and long white aprons.
-How you can sit on the quai by the Seine with beer or a bottle of wine and not get in trouble.
-How people go to the parks to lay out in their bikinis on nice days.
-How wearing heels on a random afternoon just because they go well with your outfit is not considered dressed-up.
-How the kids go home for 2 hours at lunch time and are walked back to school with their nannies in tow.
-How they name children really cool, hot things like "Gaspard" or "Antoine" or "Lucas" (without pronouncing the S at the end).
-How they say things like "C'est gentille" all the time, even if you're just being courteous ("C'est gentille" means "That's nice [of you]").
-How boys are so sexy when they talk, especially when they say, "C'est chiant, hein?"
-How people talk at the front of their mouths so their lips pooch out and they shrug and emphasize the first part of the sentence like this: "BAAhh , oui, mais voilà quoi".
-How you can walk along the Seine from St.Michel all the way to the Musée d'Orsay...and if you walk at street level you can walk aaaall the way to the Tour Eiffel.
-How going into churches gives you more than a religious experience...it's a lesson in architecture that spans 700 years.
-How you can buy one coffee for 1,90€ and sit at a café for four hours.
-How you can see the ballet at Opéra Garnier for 12€.
-How people sing on the metro..even though sometimes they're annoying, sometimes they're really good. Today for example a woman was singing a very plaintive, lovely melody a cappela. I gave her a euro. And the other day I saw a guy hooked up to an amp playing softly on his electric guitar more to amuse himself than to get money.
-How my friends here are my family.
-How it's beautiful even when it's raining and cold and disgusting outside.
What more can I even say? I'm out of time and just getting started.
I'll be home on Saturday night.
See you then.