My baguette has come in, readers. I live, drumroll please, in PARIS! Yes, the Land of Lovers. The District of Divine. The Magnificent Metropolis. I call “Par-ee” home. If I had a nickel for every time someone said, ”OMG that must be amazing!!!” . . . I’d have enough nickels to fill the Louvre and a sore neck from all my ecstatic nodding.
I’m not going to play it down: living here is a dream come true, and I’m reminded of that a thousand times a day. But everyone has bad days now and again (like yesterday, when I stepped in actual human excrement), but no matter how awful it gets, I love to sit in the park or watch the passers-by from a café and say to myself, “At least you’re not having this day in Wisconsin.” (Works every time.)
And yet, as much as I am in love with the City of Light, its denizens find a way to wedge poo underneath my high heels when I least expect it.
Paris sometimes reminds me of a bad relationship. There are reasons to stay in these toxic situations, and as many reasons to leave them.
1. It’s Flippin’ Gorge
Paris is like that really beautiful man you just spotted at the end of the bar. Expertly ensembled, coiffed to perfection, sculpted as if he were the god of a Gucci campaign . . . he gleams. Just one little problem: you are as noticeable to him as the gum stuck under the bar stool.
Paris knows this. It’s the apex of urban life and makes my hometown look like the pimply-faced band geek I used to be. I suspect the rest of France secretly despises Paris, fully aware that the other cities represent the proverbial ugly sister.
It’s amazing to be surrounded by the elegance of a city that’s in bloom, and at times I want to throw my hands in the air and sing “La Vie en Rose.”
The downside to all this beauty is the standard it sets. You can’t bum around in your pj’s in Paris. If you dare take a stroll in your workout shoes, be ready for some odd looks. Looks that in no uncertain terms inform you that you’re below the bar. You’re not even level with the ground on which that bar is perched. Oh, no. You’re sunk deep in the layers beneath the Earth’s crust, swimming in a molten fashion hell, and you should probably be set aflame for your faux pas.