Paris, la première fois.

 

“That Paris exists and anyone could choose to live anywhere else in the world will always be a mystery to me.” — Adriana, Midnight in Paris

How do I even begin to write about Paris?

Do I write about my first glimpse of the city, within the filthy, stinking bowels of the Gare du Nord? Or perhaps of how terrified I was of the 18th arrondissement where my first hotel was?

Pyramide du Louvre
Pyramide du Louvre

Do I write about how I was completely overcome the first time I saw the Louvre, or the perfect happiness of my first stroll through the Tuileries and the Champs d’Elysees?

Do I write about the Eiffel Tower, and how not a day went by that I did not make a point of seeing it? Or how about my nightly vigil at the Trocadero where I froze, thawed, and froze again, just so I can get that one perfect shot of the Tour?

Tour Eiffel
Tour Eiffel

Do I write about the food, or the cups of chocolat chaud that I found so delightful?

Do I write about the boy I lost, or the man who found me? Or how about seduction in nondescript brasseries and kisses in alleyways, and maybe the art of fending off coffee invites from amorous Frenchmen?

Jardin du Luxembourg
Jardin du Luxembourg

Do I write about the pain and pleasure of walking without end, or the endless discoveries, each one more exciting than the last? Do I write about feeling the cold deep in my bones, or the delicious warmth in my soul?

Do I write about the pain of leaving, and the prospect of going back? Or how about of knowing without a doubt that I’ve finally found a place where I could belong?

Proof that dreams do come true.
Proof that dreams do come true.

Do I write about finding myself again? Because that’s exactly what happened.

A long time ago, I lost my spirit. But it looks like it’s been in Paris all along.

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