61 Days · 44 Moments · December 2018

Paris January 2019

10 February 2019

My months in Paris were wonderful! Luckily, I didn’t fall prey to “Paris syndrome.” According to a news report: — Around a dozen Japanese tourists a year need psychological treatment after visiting Paris as the reality of unfriendly locals and dirty streets clashes with their expectations. Quite a few have psychotic breaks and up in the hospital, claiming to be Napoleon or some such thing.

9 February 2019

Happy Chinese New Year!

8 February 2019

Went to a singing circle at this cathedral yesterday. A singing circle starts with making silly noises like Bobby McFerrin, then improvising, then singing songs together. I can’t sing well but it doesn’t matter because it’s more about connecting our voices together and having fun. We laughed at our mistakes. And I made a lot since I didn’t know any of the songs in French and mostly hummed. It was nice to look across the circle and make eye contact with others while playfully making music together.

7 February 2019

Opulent Versailles. The audio guide said this huge palace was only a residence for 20 years. The gardens are hundreds of acres.

5 February 2019

This waterfall in the middle of the city! Spent the afternoon at a Turkish Hammam (spa). Dry and steam saunas, exfoliating body scrub, and cold splash pool. Wonderfully detoxifying.

4 February 2019

Pompidou art museum. Pics of the floor, walls, and ceiling as abstract art.

3 February 2019

Lovely day at the park. Met a young man from Bosnia who lives in a tent in the park. He speaks several languages but can’t find a job. My heart goes out to all the migrants and refugees struggling to survive. May our society find a way to care for all
Vuitton foundation art museum. But it currently doesn’t have any art

30 January 2019

Hardy flower in the snow and ice. I sent this pic to several friends who said “that flower is you!” That warmed my heart. I have such good friends.

29 January 2019

La Defense (government office building) and sculpture by Calder and Miro. In many of the subway stations, there are shopping malls filled with people. Weird to get off a train and be in a mall. Some of the subways are so deep you have to take multiple escalators down to them.

28 January 2019

Town of Versailles

25 January 2019

So many wonderful humorous moments: the old man wearing a hoodie that says “I am ghetto,” two men standing on the sidewalk whistling the Star Wars theme together, a child looking me through the bus window with her face pressed hard against the glass, this llama t-shirt and the one that said “my favorite emotion is tacos.”

24 January 2019

Arc d’triomphe and an Asian art museum open only by appointment. Interesting how these are kind of similar

23 January 2019

Sacre Couer. The domes make it feel like you’re inside the chambers of the heart.

19 January 2019

Lafitte Maison and the Seine. Just walking along the Seine is deeply profound—so much history. It’s been in so many songs, books, and movies. And here it is. It barely moves, so it’s almost more like a lake.

14 January 2019

So Parisian in my vintage wool beret. Could I look more like a leprechaun? Haha

13 January 2019

Olive vendor at the farmers market. Sunday farmers market is the highlight of the week. There’s an energy of excitement as people jockey around the produce bins. One vendor sings loudly. Older people drag wheeled carts with baguettes of fresh bread sticking out of the top. I buy from the same vendors every week so we have short conversations in French and they are patient with me as I try to understand the cost and count out my coins.

12 January 2019

I am much more in the present moment since arriving in Paris. My thoughts are simple and typically consist of the following: “I’m in Paris!” “This is awesome!” “I am so fortunate”

10 January 2019

Boeuf bourguignon. Sooo rich.

9 January 2019

Wonderful architecture everywhere. How I love just walking around Paris!

7 January 2019

I wish I could say the sweets were delicious, but I only tried one and it was so sickeningly sweet I spit it out. At three euro a piece, I don’t understand other than maybe you arrange some on a plate as art?

6 January 2019

Went to see a show at the Folies Bergere called Fashion Freak Show. It was about the life of designer Jean Paul Gaultier and his message that “all bodies are beautiful.” The costumes were great. I expected the audience would have dressed up creatively, but no.

5 January 2019

4 January 2019

Petit Palais art museum.

3 January 2019

Notre Dame. I’ve forgotten everything I learned about it from architectural history class, but it’s still incredible to realize this was built hundreds of years ago with just scaffolding. The ceiling is immense.

30 December 2018

Fountainebleu palace, where Napoleon lived. They had a few of his jackets on display. They would fit me. He was a little dude.

29 December 2018

Monet. These canvases are really long and were painted specifically for this oval room. Monet presented them as a gift to the city after the war, but according to the museum, the public didn’t like them at first and they sat here unappreciated for decades. I’m glad the city didn’t get rid of them because they are incredible. First of all, the paint is so thick, it’s like stucco. And the painting constantly changes as you look at it from different angles, just like a real pond and garden. They are true masterpieces. Downstairs there is a virtual reality exhibit where you put on goggles and see Monet’s gardens at Giverny and then the paintings to compare.

27 December 2018

The Sorbonne

25 December 2018

Paris opera and Madeleine cathedral. The acoustics in Madeleine are phenomenal and they hold frequent classical concerts. I attended a pipe organ concert that vibrated every cell in my body. Wow!

21 December 2018

Random windmill in the middle of Paris. I love that I can just turn a corner and find things like this!

20 December 2018

Champs-elysee. There are a million lights on these trees. This street has been the location of the yellow vest protests, and the annual New Year’s Eve gathering and fireworks over the Arc d’triomphe. My Airbnb hosts apologized for the protests and disruptions, claiming it is a small minority. The protests I’ve seen carry signs for FrExit, even though Britain is realizing that BrExit is going to cause some potentially huge problems.

19 December 2018

The Louvre. Millions of people come every year to see the Mona Lisa and leave. But the people watching is excellent.

18 December 2018

The botanical gardens are dead for the winter, so they installed these huge sculptures of creatures that light up at night.
Still not sure the name of this church, but I arrived to hear the pipe organ resounding through the building. Then mass started, which the audience chanted in Latin. Hypnotic.

17 December 2018

No idea what this is, but somehow it seems very French

14 December 2018

View from Eiffel Tower
So emotional arriving at the Eiffel Tower on this cold but sunny day. I grew up with a poster of this Tower on my bedroom wall, dreaming of living in Paris. And now I’m here! Living here for two months. Wow!!

11 December 2018

The theme for this sojourn