Paris. Like all major, international cities, its streets have been reproduced hundreds of times in film, literature, and more. Its images are so common that they have seeped into our subconscious and have been romanticized to the point of caricature.
I’ve never been a huge romantic when it came to Paris. London was always my city. But my friend Zoe wanted to go for our fall break, and I had no major objections, so I said yes. Plus, it would be one more famous place I could say I’ve been to, that I could check off my sights-of-the-world-list.
And there we were, recovering from being scammed out of €60, digesting delicious yet rich French food, and relaxing in our residential Airbnb (we have the whole apartment to ourselves). Zoe was exhausted from the early start, and I was feverously reading guide books and roughly planning our next four days.
We went to Notre Dame already. That was the first thing we did after checking into our Airbnb. We traveled all the way to the top of one tower and gazed at the ever-expanding city below us. It was beautiful.
We walked along the river after that, constantly referencing Midnight in Paris (the only movie about Paris that we’ve both seen enough to reference) and observing the famous love locks.
After a two hour dinner at a delightful, French tearoom called La Fourmi Ailée (literally The Flying Ant), we took refuge from the rain in Shakespeare and Company. I felt like a proper fictional character at that moment. All I needed was to be carrying a romantic novel under my arm and then bump into a handsome, sensitive guy with a sense of humor.
But sadly, reality rarely mimics fiction.