My countdown to departure from Paris has begun. It’s mind-boggling to think that almost four months have passed since I stepped off the plane and began my little journey to conquer Paris on my own. When I realized how rapidly my time left here in this remarkable city had dwindled, I began to reflect on what I had hoped to accomplish by this time, when I originally set out so many months ago.
Go to the top of the twinkling Eiffel Tower? Check.
Carry a fresh baguette around all day? Check.
Portrait at Montemartre? Check. Check. Check.
Force myself to eat “foie gras”? Half check.
Stay out until 5 am and come home to watching the sun rise on rue Rivoli by the Louvre? Check.
Acquire a pair of Christian Louboutin pumps from the Paris store? Check.
It’s hard to remember all the vast and tiny goals I had set up for myself when I first came to Paris and got a taste of life here. No, I never rode on the back of a Vespa, but I have been almost run over by them nearly a hundred times. The past few months are full of memories of the challenges of arriving at each monument by Metro, or weaving my way through side streets in the pouring rain, or trying to speak French to my French bank.
But now that I’m in the final stretch of this crazy ride, I try to force myself to take advantage of every little delight this city has to offer. Instead of opting for my usual pain au chocolat, I tried a new creation made of sugar and strawberries in the morning. When Paris decided to set up a seasonal ferris wheel at the end of the Champs Elysees, at first I balked and told myself I would be too nervous to be up that high on a rickety, collapsible, part-time ferris wheel set up hastily by Europeans. But during my boyfriend’s recent visit, I forced myself (or was forced) to give it a shot and just go for it. The view at the top, overlooking all of Paris, from every spot from Notre Dame to the Louvre to the Champs Elysses to the Invalides to the Eiffel Tower to Trocadero was well worth the fear of getting stuck at the top of a French contraption.
In a city that has so many unique treasures to offer, and since my time here is ticking away as fast as I can write my final term papers, I have to get in the mindset of pourquoi pas? When am I going to get the chance to see New Moon with French subtitles on the Champs Elysees ever again?