Finally, the second part of my mom’s trip, Paris edition! I would apologize for the delayed nature of this post, but I have pretty much just been dominating Europe and making moves for the past few weeks, and that takes time, so give me a break.
Paris was…..pretty much as awesome as you would expect Paris to be.
While walking around the Moulin Rouge area, which basically just includes lots of shops that you would expect to be around Moulin Rouge*, my mom made sure to tell me that if I wanted some time to walk around in the shops but felt weird to have her with me, we could split up for a bit. It was a nice sentiment, but I’m now fairly certain my mom thinks I’m a pervert.
Other highlights from our trip include:
The Ever-Elusive Eiffel Tower. As I’m sure comes as no surprise, I’ve done a lot of things in my life I’m not particularly proud of. I’ve spent way too long contemplating Taylor Swift’s love life, I have legitimately eaten ribs for breakfast, and I have on more than one occasion spent an entire day without realizing that my shirt was inside out.** Despite all of these past deeds that have put my dignity into question, I drew the line at asking someone where the Eiffel Tower was while in Paris. In all fairness to my mother and me, it was a rather foggy day and the Eiffel Tower is not as universally-visible throughout the city as one might think. Nevertheless, I would have rather walked around asking random Frenchmen “boxers or briefs” than asked just one person the location of one of the most prominent landmarks in the world. Fear not though, detective skills run in the family, and after a length of time I will not disclose, we FINALLY found it! Not only was it breathtakingly beautiful, but it was also the perfect excuse for me to take a million pictures of myself giving the peace sign, sorority-style (haters gonna hate). We even went back at night and got to see the tower all lit up, while sharing a bottle of wine of course. I would say it was romantic, but it was with my mom and that would be creepy.
Botoxed Women and Men Carrying Puppies. Parisians are to France what New Yorkers are to the United States, aka everyone else generally dislikes them and thinks they are the meanest people since Regina George. Needless to say, I wasn’t too hopeful at the prospect of having to interact with them while we were there. I guess that just goes to show you that sometimes stereotypes can be completely off-base though (except for the one about Australians being terrible at flip cup, that one is totally true***). Everyone was nice, helpful, and even spoke French back to me, which was honestly unexpected. When asking for directions, one guy even stopped and took out his Smartphone, looked up where we were going, and made sure to repeat the directions a couple of times just to make sure we could get there. I will go on a bit of a tangent here and say that I think Americans that stereotype French people, especially Parisians, as being snobby and rude, oftentimes do not realize how they themselves come off. You get what you give people. I’m glad my parents beat using words like “please” and “thank you” into me when I was younger****. I plan to do the same for my kids, as well as teaching them the importance of drinking tons of water after a night of drinking so you don’t get a hangover. Gosh I’m going to be a great mom.
Christmas, Christmas EVERYWHERE! What’s better than over the top Christmas lights and creepy statues of Santa while “I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas” plays in the background? Over the top Christmas lights and creepy statues of Santa while “I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas” plays in the background IN PARIS! Our trip perfectly coincided with the opening of the Christmas market along the Champs-Elysées, which served a dual purpose: getting some Christmas shopping done, and being able to sing the Champs-Elysées song that I learned in high school over and over again (shout out to Monsieur Hedge!). The market was really beautiful, with plenty of lights, a million little shops, and even a huge Ferris wheel that we didn’t go on, but admired nonetheless. A little bit of hot wine, some gauffres, and lots of creepy gingerbread dolls hanging by strings in the booths and we were officially in the Christmas spirit!
Dear Mom, I Finally Forgive You For Hiding In The Play Castle That Time With Dad and Making My Brothers and I Think You Were Dead. For the serious part of this blog post (hey, there’s gotta be some, right?), I will say that having my mom here was honestly one of the highlights of my time in France. Coming to France has been a dream of mine since I can remember, but there was a significant period of time when I wasn’t sure if it was going to happen or not. If it hadn’t been for the love and support of one of my best friends, I don’t think I would have ever gotten here and been able to have one of the best experiences of my life. Being away from home can make you very reflective, and I have oftentimes thought how lucky I am to have a mom that will not only always be there for me, but that I can have so much fun with too. Plus, she brought me peanut butter and ice cube trays when she visited! How can you not love a woman like that?
The good news is, I get to have more adventures with my family in the United States in only a couple days! And by adventures I mean drinking lots of Diet Coke and sitting around watching American television.
*Sex shops, y’all.
**To be fair, everyone I knew that saw me on those days and didn’t tell me: you are a jerk.
***Verified by an interesting night at a hostel in Rome.
****I am legally obligated to clarify that my parents did not actually beat me.