Well, it’s been an almighty walkathon these past two days. I would be curious to do the math and see how many miles I’ve walked total. I believe my calves would say infinity. In part, I like going slow, but the other half is that I’ve acquired a pretty seriously resolute determination to spend as little money as possible. But then again, I’ve always had a hard time justifying money in my own name.
However, I did eat three very grand things today: a smoked salmon sandwich with dill spread, a cafe au lait, and a freshly pureed juice of oranges, strawberries, raspberries, and cherries. Yikes.
As promised, I went to Versailles yesterday with my new friends from the hostel. They insisted on giving me a nickname (Tiffy), didn’t know what I meant by “hoppy” beer, and schooled me on American sitcoms. Versailles is pretty crazy. Very big. And shiny for that matter. It was almost to the point of being uncomfortably hot, but nonetheless, the boys kept spirits by doing jumping pictures, photo bombing other people’s shots, and beat boxing on the metro. No offense ladies, but while I love your company for meaningful conversation, boys have being fun down to a science. What girl would instigate a game of “One Word” from Whose Line Is It Anyway when you’re exhausted and sticky from a long day?
I met up with my couch surfing host last night, and she took me to her favorite bar, which I would have never gone to because it was down a long, scary looking alley. But it was small and the walls were orange and covered in posters and they played Beatles vinyl. I have been determined to have a glass of wine, and I did just that. Turns out it’s very strong. Thick and punchy, if you will. Like drinking a black eye. In a good way, though.
And, voila, today I saw the Eiffel Tower (finally) and sat in the grass for a while. Walked all the way to the “City Island,” managed to accidentally walk off the island and wonder why I wasn’t getting to the other side, and then walk back on in order to see Saint Chapelle, the market of flowers, and Notre Dame. It’s cool though cuz the neighborhood I got lost in was maybe my favorite so far. And that’s where I got juice!
I keep thinking about my French teacher. I think she would be very happy to know that I was here, and that I am somewhat successfully using what she so thoroughly taught me. Sometimes when I use French words that I haven’t used in conversation a lot, like when I have to tell the subway attendant that she still has my pen (stylo), and may I please have it back? it almost comes as a pleasant surprise that it works. That she knew what I meant by stylo. Hey, this stuff is good for real life! Crazy.
Can I tell you something though, dear beloved ones? The unfortunate lesson that I am having to learn is that this isn’t so easy for me as I thought. Traveling and doing and getting around and seeing is all well and good. I am fortunate enough to have an abnormally level head, so I think there is little as far as daily life goes that I wouldn’t be able to figure out eventually, you know? Travel (so far) is easy. But it’s always the best questions that are the hardest to answer. Such as, what the heck, Tiffany, are you doing here? And why the heck, if you please, are you alone?
I miss you more than I thought I would. Not that you’re not deserving to be so missed, but because I am not used to the back of my face being an unmitigated wellspring. I usually have my proverbial shit together a bit better. I think it’s okay though; I am trying to remember that this was the whole point.
Imagine, if you will, as though people all start their lives on top of a big mountain, and happiness or purpose or meaning, etc. was at the bottom. Most people, if I could judge such a thing, take years, if not their whole life, figuring out the answer to what the heck. They move down the mountain slowly, methodically, pausing to go to school or get married or have babies. Maybe one of those things is the bottom for them. Some people don’t move around the mountain at all. Me? I feel as though I have, for some reason vaguely beyond me, hurtled myself off the mountain. I seem determined to get to the bottom of it (ha! that worked better than I was intending) and find out just what exactly is down there, gosh darn it.
Well that’s cool. I’m sure once I’m down there I will feel terrifically grateful and perhaps I will even be able to see the mountain for what it is and say, oh! That’s what that’s all about. But for now, on day three, dear beloved ones, I’m pretty damn lonely and stupendously lost.
But that is, I suppose, the point after all. I guess I just wasn’t expecting it to feel like free falling. In the meantime, send me some love?