*Insert Lady Marmalade by Christina Aguileria*
We now take a slight turn from Moldova and head towards the destination of FRANCE, PARIS.
Yes. Paris is amazing. I was mind blown. I instantly fell in love.
Over the years I’ve heard mixed opinions about people and their experience with this old city, some told me it was completely dirty and the people were rude, some said it was okay but overrated, then I’ve heard that it was wonderful, and to be completely honest I really didn’t know what to expect.
For so many years I had visualised this city in my head from millions of aesthetic instagram posts, to artworks of the Eiffel tower, to the food, the to language of french which I was taught in school but really only remembered enough to still make me look like yet another tourist who’s trying to be as french as possible, but is failing miserably…”Bonjour?”.
But after discovering this city and being shown its beauty in the span of 10 days, I completely and utterly fell in love. I love my home town and the people who live there, but this was something different, I felt like I belonged in this city, and not only because it was the “city of love”, but more-so it was the city that allowed me to fall in love with itself, no other human being, but it’s architecture, it’s culture, the people behind every corner street cafe, bar, park, the essence of the streets, every peak you managed to squeeze in of beauty around yourself, but mainly it’s amazingly delicious food and BAGUETTES.
When I mean the french loveeeeeeee their baguettes, they really do, no matter what time of day, no matter which suburb of Paris you end up in there is a baguette at every corner, it’s like their waiting for your everywhere you go, it sort of becomes this psychological game between you and the baguette, who will see each-other first? You or the baguette, but either way I fell in love with Paris as equally as I fell in love with combination of butter and baguettes, or it could’ve just been my brain telling myself I’m eating a french piece of bread so therefore it would just taste better? I tell myself it was quite the opposite, because I love carbs either way.
No matter how touristy this destination has become to be, I found the french to be very kind and charming. Luckily for myself I did get to experience Paris in the least touristy way as possible, and instead was given the ‘typical life of a french individual living in Paris who travels everywhere by bicycle’. Out of all the places in the world, Paris couldn’t have been the most perfect place to have connections with people. My mothers best friend had been living in the marvellous city for quite a while now as well as her son, and the two gave us an experience of Paris like no other. It sort of become like a cocktail in a sense, the more I was shown, the more places I was taken to, the more people I met, the more food I tasted, the more addicted I became and the more I wanted to continue sipping on my drink, to the point where I was in a sense of pure bliss and happiness, something that alcohol can embellish in your body, but this time I was sober (mostly), and instead I was sipping Paris a little bit by little.
I was taken around Paris with sweat and more sweat accompanying myself, but it was so worth it when our family tour guide allowed me to discover the city as a local, taking us to all the destinations he loved and knew I would, and for him I was so grateful.
I could be here all day and night writing my memories of Paris, and how it stood out for me, but I thought I’d sum these up and create a short-ish list of why Paris was so much beautiful in my retina’s compared to what I had heard from other friends and individuals.
- The language.
Hearing our family friend communicate in french was probably the most fascinating thing I had experienced the whole trip. Such a fast but slow and elegant language. Heck if a guy had opened his mouth and started flooding words out in french I’d already have my baguette with me ready to fall in love with him and hide out forever in Paris with my bicycle and cat.
2. All the parks.
This may sound a little odd? A park? who cares right? Well being used to your typical green but not so special parks back home it was quite an experience when I went Paris. Towards the end of the 10 days in Paris, I was shown a park only a suburb away from where we had lived for the time being. The park was explained as least of the touristy, and I could tell as to why. It was filled with so many locals who were simply just picnicking with their baguettes AGAIN, a bottle of wine, surrounded by the beauty of the park, and their loved ones. I was so spiralled by the fact that a single park can be so beautiful and cultural, and I fell in love even more.
3. The people, their beautiful values and instilled importance of friendship.
Throughout the whole trip I was amazed at how lovely the french were, maybe because I was discovering the city with a local, or not, either way I was truly blessed to see how the french cared about each-other so much, the amount of time they spent together eating food at a local cafe, drinking coffee, listening to music at the local bar, celebrating the finale of the world cup in the most frantic and amazing way, (yep, I was caught right in the spiral of France’s success) normal things right? But in Paris, friendships seemed so beautiful to admire, almost made me sad as I realised this is what Australia was missing, slightly more culture, slightly more focus on friendships and the scenery around us.
Every night, as late as midnight, any time we were around a canal we would always be welcomed by hundreds of groups of people, again picnicking and enjoying the company of friends with a bottle of wine and something delicious sitting on a covering by the reflection of an old architectural building shining across the limelight of any canal and any bridge. Even at Park Buttes- Chaumont, there was a moment where I was part of a random choir just organised for leisure and fun, a moment where I genuinely felt so happy singing with a bunch of french strangers, no matter my lack of french, I was just singing along to classic hits and enjoying the company of strangers, as they sung with their spritz in their hands, families, friends, and fellow randoms they had just met. It was such a beautiful moment, a real highlight of my french trip, to be able to see the connection between so many friends, even just strangers. It felt so pure and genuine in Paris, and that was another aspect that made me fall in love with the city. Being able to witness so many moments between friends, as they washed away the busy aspects of life and just took in the beauty around them and the company around them and made the most of it every night, made sense as to why this city was indeed the city of romance and love as this was equally displayed between friendships.
4. Yeah I guess the Eiffel tower, Notre dame, Moulin rouge etc
Every touristy icon in this city, no matter how overrated or overlooked it may be, to me it was still a gem to see, but lets be real…nothing can beat the baguettes….
5. This video really just sums up the beauty of Paris, and why I fell in love with this city so much…
Farewell Paris, and now the last and final part coming up next…
Love Jules xo