“When are you back?” my roommate texted, aptly noting that my teaching duties had come to an end, and yet I wasn’t exactly clamoring to return to Paris.
I wrote back to explain that I wasn’t really sure when I’d be back. I was having a great time. And I was offered a free place to stay the whole month of August if I wanted.
“OMG!” My phone lit up again a few minutes later. “You met somebody!”
My roommate is funny.
While it would be a nice bonus, romance remains illusive. But Spain has seduced me.
I extended the ticket because…well, I think visuals work just as well as words here.
Terraces and plazas and perfect weather, oh my!
The sun makes me really, really happy
Nico, who has kept me laughing all month.
Whether you like the modernist architecture or not, it’s pretty wild having these odd creations pop up all over town
Also, did you catch the beach at the top? Yeah, there are beaches everywhere.
Now before you think I’ve gone and abandoned Paris entirely, I’ll reassure you that I’m heading back next week (um, I think I am. Kidding, kidding).
But I do have to figure some things out. Namely why every time I spend extended periods somewhere else (New York say, or now Barcelona) I don’t want to return to Paris. I feel better and bolder in these other cities. Paris, you’re beautiful, but you rarely make me feel this good.
Even with the intensity of the past month, friends (who have seen me on Skype, thus able to see the difference in how I usually look) have been telling me how relaxed I appear. How happy. And it’s true. On a basic level, Spanish is closer to my heart than French, I do incredibly well in the constant sunshine, and I like wearing flip flops everyday. It’s pretty clear why I’m so comfortable here.
But Paris has also become a huge part of my identity and offered me so many opportunities. I am darn grateful for this life, I tell you.
I went to reflect on some of these issues at nearby Parc Guell. I stumbled onto this fun-loving band.
Doh. ANOTHER reason I can’t leave!
As is the week-long neighborhood party in Gracia (where I am currently staying!) that kicks off tonight (though things really get under way tomorrow).
The Festes Major de Gracia (in Catalan) is one of the city’s biggest party times (that’s saying something for a party town). Besides numerous concerts, workshops, parades, fireworks, and open-air dances, the streets and plazas of the ‘hood compete in an annual decorating contest. I’ve been watching nearby streets get ready for days. Apparently, they’ve been planning for months. I can’t wait to see what the finished product looks like.
I read a figure that a million and a half people come for the Festes Major and it’s right outside my door.
I think I’ll ponder this life-purpose, place-in-the-world stuff later.
What are you up to for summer fun?