Up above the UK somewhere I’m cramped behind a sleeping elderly man who has pushed his seat as far back as it will adjust and the tray table holding my macbook air. Thankful the seat next to me remains unoccupied I’m planning to spend the next ten-ish hours in blissful (or as blissful as an economy class international flight can be) alone-ness. Aside from the cold I’ve developed over the past few days, Paris was good to me. My calves feel stronger (yay for stairs), my carry on is filled with macarons and my mind feels a bit more cultured.
Visiting Paris has been what feels like a lifelong dream. Much like kissing a dolphin, now that the experience is over part of me feels as if I’ve just awoke from a surreal dream. Though I stayed on Instagram and Facebook, on my terms I was relatively inactive on social media. I cannot remember the last time I went more than a week without blogging and moreover didn’t miss blogging or feel a gaping hole in my life schedule. Clearly, I’m not planning on abandoning blogging anytime soon and I imagine crossing back into my timezone and regular routine will help me fall back into my schedule quite quickly. Luckily I have Jordan and Pierre at home waiting for me (and my cozy bed) or I imagine the idea of leaving Paris would be quite dreadful.
Many of my preconceived assumptions of Paris were correct, but some were shattered as well. Paris is picturesque and magical and romantic and as filled with beauty as it is rumored to be. Even in the dingy apartment we holed up in in the Marais district something in the air felt special. Waiting for the metro in a dirty, dark tunnel, the golden frames that outlined advertisements on the walls felt somehow elevated, special! I can’t be the only tourist whose friends and family warned “Parisians are rude“, yet, I was surprised by the kindness of most people. Like most tourists I tried my best to speak french only for locals to respond in perfect english. I didn’t find it the least bit rude though, my french is awful!
My cousin Genevieve and I chose to spend the entirety of our stay in/around Paris. We contemplated spending a few days in Amsterdam or Brussels, but in the end decided we really wanted to experience Paris without any sort of rush. I look forward to sharing a brief overview of our itinerary later this week, but in short, I am SO glad we spent as much time as we did in Paris. There is so much to explore in the city of light and I felt like we were able to experience a good balance of “touristy” activities and sight seeing while also exploring, shopping, etc.
Castles, macarons, cobblestone streets, unexpected glimpses of the Eiffel tower, cherry blossoms in bloom, a plethora of beautiful shoes and the most delicious fresh squeezed orange juice at every cafe and corner store…saying goodbye to Paris is difficult. Like many before me, a large part of me longs to send for my things and settle into a box-sized attic apartment just to call Paris home. Something about the shimmering light of the Eiffel tower just radiates artistic inspiration! Seattle is my home though, at least for now.
Au revoir Paris!