|If we had these sliding ladders, you know I'd be all over that shit.|
The end of 2014 also brought a spontaneous trip to Paris. I had been a little sad that I wasn't going to Europe for Christmas and birthday, as I had for the past two years (if you're a reader of this blog, this is not news to you). And obviously, this being a #firstworldproblem, I got over that real fast (mostly because there are so many other terrible things happening in the world, and people suffering, so my sadness over not traveling seemed ridiculous.)
So I was all set to go home for the holidays (which was a bonus, and I really shouldn't have been sad at all), when my Auntie decided she didn't want to stick around California for the holidays and invited me to go to Paris with her. Clearly when someone invites you to go to Paris, you don't say no.
Within a week, we had the entire trip planned, and now here are some pics of our travels:
|Bird's eye view of Paris from the Eiffel Tower|
|Area near the Eiffel Tower|
|Also from the Eiffel Tower, a view of the Aquarium|
|The Pont Alexandre III overlooking the Seine|
|Near the Louvre|
|In the Hall of Mirrors at Versailles|
|Statue of St. Joan of Arc in Notre Dame|
|With one of my pals :-)|
|At the base of the Eiffel Tower|
|At the Arc de Triomphe|
|On the Eiffel Tower|
|Across from Notre Dame|
|With Auntie on the Pont Alexandre III|
|Getting a portrait done in Montmartre|
Four days in Paris were a whirlwind, and it went by very quickly. Highlights included the hardest working server in the city (he hovered over the table and would literally snatch my plate the moment I was done eating), trying escargot for the first time (which I really liked and reminded me somewhat of eating oysters or mussels), maneuvering around on the Metro (successfully), meeting up with my friend Catherine (who I didn't expect to see, so that was a nice surprise), and overall, hanging out with my Auntie (who, not only is the coolest person I've ever met; if you need anyone to plan a trip/be a tour guide, she's your woman).
Being able to see things I'd dreamed of as a kid was amazing, and the trip couldn't have been better. It was funny though, because everything didn't seem so alien, like they did the first time I visited Europe. It was a similar feeling to when I'd been to New York a few times and I didn't feel so out of place. The allure of Paris was still there, but I guess I felt less like a tourist than the previous times I'd traveled. I'd love to go back.
It was a shock to hear about the terrorist attacks there recently, and to know that just a few weeks ago, I'd been in the city. An event like this just adds to the list of really shitty things that have happened in the world and continue to happen in the world, and while I know I can't do anything personally to prevent or stop them, I hope that events such as this don't happen at the same frequency as they have been.
Not to end on a somber note, but New Year's Eve was fun, hanging out with some friends, and starting the year off right (though immediately after, all on the same day, my watch strap, the pull tab on my jacket zipper, and my favorite necklace all broke). I have plans for 2015 to be a good year, since I'm working hard on my writing, and hoping positive things come from it, I'm participating in Multicultural Children's Book Day, and I have high hopes for the rest of the year to move in an upward direction.
Up next, my review of MYSTERY OF THE GIANT MASKS OF SANXINGDUI!