I’m in the process of packing my bags to leave for the beautiful Loire valley tomorrow and as I struggle to fit eveything in, I take an opportunity to reflect with gratitude on a wonderful (and exhausting) week in Paris.
I arrived a month later than last year in the hope that the weather would be brighter but who can control that aspect of life? So I was glad that my friends had kept a warm coat I had left behind last year. Slowly, as I familiarised myself with new places and revisited old ones, in this beautiful city, the sun began to strengthen. Though I managed to visit five famous museums- a drop in the bucket of possibilities in a city like Paris- it was one or two “petit matins” that I equally enjoyed. These are “little mornings” when nothing much happens, you can still be in your jammies at 10.30 drinking your second expresso, stroking the cat who insists you not move at all or stand staring out the window while the richness of life in a Parisian suburb passes you by.
I’m grateful also for the lovely encounters and warmth of friendly strangers, like Nicole, a woman originally from Martinique and now a thorough Parisian with whom I shared one of those meaningful philosophical discussions on life and the importance of choosing our outlook each day. I so enjoyed the conversation that I missed my stop. But Nicole got off the train with me at the next one and put me back on the right track to my destination.