I realized something recently: in just a few months I’ll be reaching my five-year anniversary of the move to Paris. Half a decade! That will match – and then quickly surpass – the amount of time I lived in New York.
Wow. Paris becomes the place I’ve lived the longest since leaving my mama’s house at 18. Definitely nothing I ever planned. Isn’t life grand?
The launch party was a success yesterday – the book sold out! After nearly unending rain and cold since I’ve returned (almost feels like November in July here), the sun came out and it was…(gasp!) summer again. (Gone back to gray clouds again now).
Anyway, the agreeable weather meant we could have our reading outside in front of Shakespeare & Co. So many people in attendance! I read with 8 other authors.
David, one of the book’s editors, expressed an interesting sentiment, part of which I can relate to. Someone asked him why he chose the title “Strangers in Paris” for the anthology. He talked about how he didn’t realize he was looking for a home until he came to Paris. He had always felt like an “outsider” where he’s from. In Paris, though, it’s ok because he is an outsider. So it’s totally normal to feel that way!
I wouldn’t say I came to Paris looking for a home. I was in love with New York (still am) and felt completely at home there. But I felt this inexorable draw to Paris. I wasn’t running away from New York; I was moving toward the (City of) Light.
The first couple of years in Paris I think I did feel very much like an outsider, but I wasn’t always at ease in the role.
Recently I’ve grown into who I am here, and like David, sort of delight in the feeling of being an outsider who has created a home here. I express my gratitude for this. We’re not from here, but we’ve found community. We bring our own unique perspective to Paris and in turn let the city change us, too.
So when easyJet tapped me as a Paris Local Expert, I say, sure! Bring it on! I am an expert on Paris – my quirky take on Paris, that is – just as we’re all experts in our own experience. It was such fun to write their new Insider Tips feature and do some Q&A. (This is the type of work I love, by the way. Copywriting gods if you’re listening!)
I also feel honored that they named me to their list of Ultimate Paris Travel Bloggers (so many great blogs on the list! I keep good company).
If you want to see if you agree with my answers (when is the best time to visit Paris? is Paris safe?), head on over to their City Breaks page here. Hope you enjoy!
What would your perfect day in Paris look like? This was one of their questions; as I said in the piece, mine begins with a pain au chocolat!