I awake on our seventh day in Paris, with the light streaming through the window once again. Last nights rain gone and the hot sticky temperatures of the past few days cooled. We have four more mornings to wake up here. No firm plans for today, just decide over a leisurely breakfast. This is the life!
What is is about Paris that makes me and lots of others keep wanting to come back for more?
It is not the beautiful architecture, or the magnificent art, the usual Eiffel tower or Notre Dame, for I have seen these so many times I no longer see them. No it is the atmosphere Paris has. The acceptance of eccentricity yet the intolerance of disrespect.
But would we really want to live here?
We spent a month on holiday in Montmartre, a couple of years a go and boy was I glad to go home. Being “on holiday” for four weeks is exhausting! Living here would be a whole new ball game. For now I am different. My visits are more about meeting people than sightseeing.
I watch some workmen on top of a roof opposite arriving for work. The shake hands and kiss each other on the cheek. on top of the roof! only in Paris!
If I lived here .….I would get up early every morning before the city has woken up and walk up the street, breathing in the fresh smell that Paris has in the morning, then go and have coffee every morning at the Cafe de Metro. Making friends with Madame and Messieur. Then I would go home to wake Michael. I would take my shopping trolley twice a week to the Parmienter market making friends with the butcher, the fishmonger and greengrocer.. and Michael could enjoy making lovely meals. I would ride my bicycle all over the city. I would ask my friends round for brunch and we could gossip. and I would have people to stay. We would listen to music in the streets and give food to a homeless person who lives in the parc nearbye.
I would have no need to visit art galleries and other tourist places, but I might just do one tourist thing a week just so I would know to show my visitors around and remind my self whet a beautiful and interesting city this is.
I would wear a scarf all the time and practical shoes. (have you noticed that Parisiens don’t wear high heels much, because they do so much walking) and I would adopt the “I am a feminine sexy woman” attitude that French women have, because it is catching. I would go to the hamman once a month and indulge myself with mint tea and sticky cakes afterwards
..and I could take French lessons to improve my French, and meet people, because I could then speak the beautiful language all the time, and people would correct me, ( because I will never speak French perfectly) and I would laugh and be glad.
.Michael would be happy, because he could go off to the races at Longchamps, Chantilly and Maisons Lafitte. for only two or three euro…he could invite his racing cronies and take them too. .. He could go to art exhibitions and spend ages studying each picture…..and we could go for long walks along the canal and have picnics in the Parcs, when the weather is nice and he could spend time discussing the freshness of the fish with the fishmonger, even though he would never speak French! and he will love to cook, but we will eat out maybe once a week trying different restaurants till we find one we really love.
And now and then I would catch a glimpse of the Eiffel tower twinkling in the night and feel that nice warm content feeling I get, just to be here.
If course I will miss my family and I will miss the green hills of home and my garden, and I will get frustrated in the post office, when the clerk passes the time of day with a customer, even though there is a queue….. and I will get livid with the little old lady who thinks it is her right to push in. The number of forms I have to fill in will drive me mad and I will complain about the price of everything and I will have to pay my utility bills with my pension, so I wont be able to go on so many holidays because I will not be able to afford it…. and I won’t get a free travel pass like I do at home!
Home is only a short flight away and I can visit often. and they can come to visit me.
But of course this is just a fantasy. and we have to go home…in four days.
Love from Bolton
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