Paris Pensées I

The following is a collection of thoughts that I put down on paper just before and during the time I was in Paris. It does not necessarily tell a full story, (or even a partial one for that matter).

Tomorrow, I embark on adventure…

Today, I leave for Paris. I am rather tired, as I didn’t sleep much last night. I was awake nearly the whole night because my friends kept coming to visit me before I left. It’s interesting that I have so many friends, and yet, I often feel lonely. I wonder whose fault that is – mine or theirs, or even no one’s. I love my friends. Though I go back and forth on whether I like people in general. Sometimes I’m fortunate enough to meet interesting people. But more often than I’d like, I meet idiots. However, I’m not going to spend my time talking about idiots…

I wake up on the plane to a most delicious smell – the best croissants I’ve ever tasted. They seem to be infused with butter. I have to ask for a second one.

The plane will soon land. I can see Paris outside my window, but the sun isn’t up yet; it is nearly 6am. I have 6 more hours of waiting at the airport before the directors of my program arrive to pick me (and the other students) up. For some reason, Seal’s lyrics come to mind:

If I could fly I’d spread my wings, in time to free you from these foolish things…

I am in Paris! It’s so new, and so surreal. The food is really good. And the other students are very pleasant.

I am now in my host mom’s apartment, and I am happy. She is kind. My room is pretty and warm.

I am in Paris. It’s actually real. Wow. I am free. I am not in Amherst (thank heaven). I can lose myself in this beautiful city. I feel as if everything is possible, like I have no limits. I love being free. I am in Paris. The adventure begins.

I feel like I have been dropped in the middle of a tornado. I don’t like that much. Paris is like a tornado. There is too much of everything all over the place and I feel like I’m being buffeted about. I like mild breezes. What to do… It seems I will have to fight my way out of this tornado to get to the place with mild breezes. Let’s go…

Why are there so many homeless people in Paris? Are there more in other parts of France? Europe? It bothers me that there are so many people without a home. They have no private space. They  don’t have toilets or showers, and they have to sleep on the ground or on metro seats. Each day I pass by at least five homeless people. What can I do? I have a little bit of money that’s steadily running out. Still, I try to give some of them money. They’re people like me. What if I was in their situation? Yet, even when I give them money, I know it’s not enough. But what else can I do? I am not rich. I don’t live here. I don’t have “resources” or connections with influential people. Should I just ignore the poverty around me like everyone else?

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