Paris- First Things First

A long while ago, hubby had announced to family and friends that this trip to France would end all of my thoughts of ever wanting to visit again and that I would be “totally over it by the end and Paris would be a beloved memory.”

Besides, “there were other places to see in the world “, our son Hayden would announce.

Yes, I had seen the main tourist sights of Paris- climbed The Eiffel Tower, walked the Champs Elysee to the Arc de Triumph, then onto Napoleon’s Tomb and The Defence Museum, in and out of the Royal Palais and not forgetting the equally adorable Petite Palais with its exquisite inner sanction and garden for a coffee and quiet reflection.

Yes, all the sights mentioned in guide books were discovered one by one- including Sacre Coeur, Saint Sulpice, a myriad of museums including the Rodin, Picasso, Natural History and  de Cluny, Jardin de Luxembourg, Picasso Museum, and of course The Louvre and Eiffel Tower. Then there is The Tuilleries , L’Orangerie,  Notre Dame and Ile de la cite (the original Paris) itself, Opera Garnier,  The Glass Passageways such as Rue de Jouffrey, Galerie Lafayette and other beautiful shopping areas and markets dotted within each district of Paris. And there is so much more than this!

Every sight is unique, artistically beautiful and many have to be accredited to the encouragement and support from French royalty and historical leaders of days past and present.

Interestingly, I notice that the French themselves spend much of their own weekends working on this same list of things to see and do in Paris , lapping up the arts and culture alongside the tourists.

Intermittently, a complete change of pace is taken, and a stroll along the Seine at sunset while a French busker plays his accordion and the water laps the edge of the cobbled pier, is a cliché, but none the less brilliant.

Over time, the list of places to see and do became endless. The more I saw, the more I wanted to experience.  Sights became experiences on subsequent trips. Longer time was spent ‘doing’ and ‘learning’ and not just viewing through touristic eyes and ticking the sights off one by one!

Paris is a city I relish in. It is a sea of cross sections and rues (avenues) holding exquisite potential for discovery. 

Becoming a local was the goal even if only a temporary one at that. By doing what the locals did, we mingled and picked up the cues on the French routine of living and way of life in general.

First things first, make your list and be ready to be seduced by Paris. Step two,  allow your self to stray.

Best Wishes,

Therese Waddell


2 Responses to “Paris- First Things First”

  1. Therese after reading this and how beautifully you have described everything it only makes me wish I could be there to experience it all.

    Great work

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