My Love Affair with Paris

Last night in Paris. Tomorrow I begin the pilgrimage and the going gets a little deeper you might say. Before I go though, I want to reflect a little on this love affair I keep having with this city. I am reading Anais again. I seem to be revisiting so many ghosts in coming back to Paris again. Mademoiselle in her 20’s who drank champagne under the Eiffel Tower with a group of travellers huddling together as we slept in a rich Arabian apartment only to flee hurriedly in the early hours of the morning when groping hands found us beneath the covers. Then at 32 I was sometimes mademoiselle, sometimes madame ( and it mattered which!) leaving behind my big relationship to find myself in Anais and Colette, the Latin quarter and Jardin du Luxembourg, a copy of ‘The Vagabond’ under my arm. And now ten years later I am most definitely madame, yet ironically I am receiving far more male attention here than I ever did before. Perhaps it is true that they like their women older in France? Perhaps I am finally of an age when I can enjoy the play, or perhaps it is because I have rekindled my love of men and there are so many fine examples here! Anais is also in her 40’s in this, the last of the diaries. She has fled Paris and the war for New York and she is deep in her struggle, yet captivating as ever. I am so in love with how she writes. I have had men in the past confuse this love, taking it as a sign that I am seeking random sexual escapades ( now doesn’t that sound like fun!) but for me it is her painfully exquisite sensitivity that draws me in. She is a true Pisces. Excruciatingly aware and desperately needy of a love that is “Wildly beautiful. Intense. Healthy”. Her desperation both attracts and repels me but it is always an extreme fascination for the Aquarian in me who is too cool and aloof to allow neediness too much air time. So am I done with Paris now, ready to leave my ghosts behind for good or will I return at 52 with a whole new perspective? I don’t know. For now I am still in search of lessons in life and love and still very much in love with Paris.

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