Between my writing residency and road trip, I’ve been away from Paris for some time. I’ve gotten caught up in other worlds, but the city’s on my mind.
“April in Paris” is one of those phrases that instantly evokes a certain nostalgia. A mood set in three simple words. (Listen to Ella & Louis do their rendition of the song).
I’ll be interested to return to Paris this month (though I’m not rushing my sojourn in Guadeloupe. Bravo to those who figured out my current location from the last post’s clues!). Distance is always great for allowing us to see places we know with fresh eyes. I wonder, too, if Paris – and France – have some new changes in store.
After two rounds of voting, Paris elected its first-ever female mayor, Anne Hidalgo. (Most of France moved to the right politically in the recent municipal elections, but as Paris is so often an exception, the Socialist candidate prevailed there).
Hidalgo was born in Spain, but grew up in Lyon, becoming a French national at the age of 14. She quoted the writer Sacha Guitry in saying: “Being a Parisian is not about being born in Paris, it is about being reborn there.”
Continue reading ‘Create What You Seek + The Kale Project’
Any guesses where I am? It *is* a return to French territory.
Right after my writing residency at the Kerouac House I went on a road trip. It only seemed fitting after spending a full season in Jack’s house.
From New Orleans to Baton Rouge, NYC to San Juan, I’ve had a lot of fun before finally returning to French territory…though it’s probably not where you think.
(Literally) on the road: 400 palm trees line L’Allée du Manoir
I bounce between periods of recording life in my notebook and of living it. Rather than worry as I used to when not putting pen to paper consistently (maybe I’ll never write again!) I instead embrace these periods as an important part of the process.
I just enjoyed 3 months of uninterrupted solo time to focus on my creative work. What I’ve done since is travel, experiencing new places, meeting old friends and making new ones. Planting the seeds for new stories. Refilling the well.
It’s a lot to encapsulate, but here are a few snapshots:
Continue reading ‘Refilling the Well + Return to France*’
Thinking of moving to Paris? Carpe Diem.
Recently I was tapped as an “expat expert” and asked to contribute a tip about living abroad for an HiFx campaign. At first I balked at being considered an “expert.” But then I reasoned: if experience is what makes someone knowledgeable, then I must know something after 7 years in Paris.
Still, I had trouble coming up with concrete advice. If there’s one thing I’ve learned it’s that everyone’s experience is different. Part of the adventure (and frustration) of life in France is that it’s difficult to pin down the precise rules. Documents asked of one person for a dossier, for example, may not be requested of another.
Art along the Seine
In the end, perseverance counts more than anything. My tip, therefore, emphasized attitude, summed up in a few short lines. (You can see the full list of tips here; mine will be added soon).
The topic got me to wondering, though. How could I expand on the lessons I learned moving to the City of Light? I realized expectations and the perception of luck play a major role when I talk to people about moving abroad. Here are some broad thoughts on the subject:
Continue reading ‘Luck and Expectations: Some Thoughts on Moving Abroad’
“Now and then it’s good to pause in our pursuit of happiness and just be happy.” -Guillaume Apollinaire
Stop! Small miracle alert. Love beam over the Seine.
Happy Valentine’s Day, friends!
I hope your life is full of love, on this and every day. I’ve spent the majority of V-days single rather than in a pair so I truly mean love in its widest sense, not simply the part about romance. Family, friends, the nice neighbor who baked you a pie, the stranger who gave you a smile – love is all around us!
I’d be lying if I didn’t confess to a special kind of happiness this time round, though. My beau has just arrived from Paris.
Continue reading ‘Love Beams and a Reading’
Published February 2, 2014
Offbeat Adventures , Out and About , Stuff About Sion , The World Beyond Paris
Tags: candlemas, chandeleur, crepes, culture shock, Disney, Magic Kingdom, orlando, paris
The day I arrived in Orlando to start my stint as the writer-in-residence at the Kerouac House, the project’s director drove me to the supermarket as soon as I dropped off my bags. Even if Central Florida felt a world away from France, I was glad one thing remained the same: food is a top priority! (That, and t.p. – not one roll left in the house!)
Pulling into the Publix parking lot, however, I realized, Toto, we’re not in Paris anymore.
Continue reading ‘Culture Shock, Early Paris Days, and Crepes for Chandeleur’
Which direction are you headed this year?
Happy new year! Has 2014 started off well? Have you made resolutions? Broken any already? Or are you just playing life as it comes?
I’m celebrating, too, another special occasion. Four years ago today I started this blog and signed in as paris (im)perfect for the first time. Thank you for coming along for the ride!
Speaking of which, as someone always seeking Paris quirk, it seems only fitting that my blogiversay and the “No Pants Subway Ride” take place around the same time.
Continue reading ‘Happy New Year! Blogiversary! Love Your Life!’