7 Things Sunday : Winter Break
One. Nothing beats the feeling of stepping off a train and sneak-hug-attacking one of your dearest friends who you haven’t seen in five years (and then proceeding to do a laugh/cry/squeal-thing and hold the embrace for a few more minutes). I COULD NOT BELIEVE IT. I kept wanting to pinch her and make sure she was real and not behind a screen. By day we strolled though art galleries, cathedrals, and Christmas markets. By night we feasted on delicious French food too beautiful to eat, played games, and stayed up giggling in bed until 2 or 3 in the morning. I tried caviar (hated) and escargots (loved). I drank some of the best wine and champagne I’ve ever had in my life. I impressed everyone with my very best French accent singing Christmas hymns at mass in a tiny village church. Everyone made me feel like one of the fam. I didn’t want the week to end. It is one I’ll treasure forever. I left feeling like the luckiest little lady in the world. And I miss this one already…
Two. I spent one tiny day walking the streets of Paris. One day to experience Paris feels like a joke, but I would’ve taken even an hour if its all I had. Paris is stunning even when it is freezing, windy, and everything is a pale shade of grey. Until I was surrounded by (sometimes overly) affectionate couples standing in lines, eating at cafes, and snuggling on the streets…I had forgotten about Paris’ reputation for being, you know, the city of love. This made being a lone ranger feel a little strange. There’s nothing particularly brave or novel about solo travel. Tons of people do it. But there is something just slightly transformative about the experience. I’ll try not to get all Eat, Pray, Love here…but you have to make all your own choices, which is sometimes harder than it sounds. You have to make snap judgements about people and places. You have to be brave enough to walk when you don’t know where you’re going. You have to learn how to be your greatest resource. You have to believe no one is actually staring at you when you’re eating lunch by yourself or taking photos of a knitted toy cat in front of the Musee d’Orsay. At one point during the day, I was sitting in Sainte-Chappelle, enamoured by stained glass so beautiful it could make a grown man cry. I was thinking about my stained-glass-making grandpa and how much he would geek out in this place. I suddenly felt a sense of selfishness come over me to not be sharing this whole day with anyone…which isn’t good or bad. It just is. Paris was an experience entirely my own. I was the only personal witness to my thoughts, feelings and reactions. It felt great and it felt sad. C’est la vie.
Three. I saw ‘The Theory of Everything’, ‘Birdman’, and ‘Into the Woods’ over break. I liked them in that order. T Swift’s song ‘Out of the Woods’ kept running through my head during ‘Into the Woods’. Are we out of the woods yet? Are we out of the woods yet? Are we out of the woods yet? Are we out of the woods? That’s pretty much how I felt about it.
Four. My friend Ali and I attempted to go hiking around Loch Lomond this week, but then there was rain, snow, and 100 mph winds. Trains were cancelled. The sea was raging. It was a mess. Instead we visited the Robert Burns Museum and walked around the town of Alloway, ate ice cream sundaes the size of our faces, kitchen danced to The Prince of Egypt soundtrack, and watched a lot of movies in bed. We had a real John and Yoko thing going. Ali had the privilege of seeing ‘It Takes Two’ for the first time. It’s a big deal.
Five. I finally (maybe) have a part time job working at a coffee roaster/cafe in the seaside town of North Berwick at a place called Steampunk. I have trial shifts Monday and Tuesday this week! Now I can be like the cool kids and flood your Insta feed with urban, industrial, coffee-related photos…ha.
Six. I’ve been on a Salt-N-Pepa kick lately and might be in the process of memorising all the lyrics to Whatta Man for no reason other than it may come in handy for karaoke one day.
Seven. School starts back up on Wednesday and I’m not entirely sure how I’m going to juggle a part time job, a (TBD) course placement, classes, and homework considering last semester I thought I was going to die solely from the school part. I guess my time management skills are about to get fierce.