My first day in Paris. My luggage got lost en route from Sydney and I'm not entirely sure I want to be here. After sleeping for 24 hours I took myself to a cafe at the end of the street and remained there for a few hours while I came to terms with the fact that I was here.
For the first seven days I spent every morning on the phone for at least an hour to the lovely people at Air France. They seemed to have less of an idea of where my luggage was than I did. All my life I have wanted to speak French, never more so than during these phone calls. Grrrrr! To find out whether I got my luggage back you'll just have to read the book...Oh you don't really care? Fair enough. Well, I did and it was one of the happiest moments of my life. At least during my time in Paris.
Ah yes, food and wine! I have a lot of photos that look exactly like this photo. That's because I did a lot of this in Paris. There's nothing like sitting in a Parisian cafe with a glass of wine and a good view to take your mind off things. I think this was taken in the middle of a shopping trip for some clothes since my luggage still hadn't arrived. I ended up buying some weird olive-coloured chiffon thing that I still haven't worn to this day. I think I might have been drunk at the time of purchase.
Rue Charlot in La Marais in the 3rd arrondissement. This was the view of my street where my shoe-box sized studio aparmtent was located. It was a fantastic location, right in the centre of lots of boutiques and bars. I did a lot of walking to and from this street. I loved living here.
Another shot of the Seine with the Eiffel Tower in the background. This was actually one of three sunny days during the month I spent in Paris. I was supposed to be summer. It really didn't feel like it.
This was the view from the end of my street.
I think I liked this street sign because it had the word Champagne in it. As well as embracing Paris I was also embracing alcohol.
Considering my face was still swollen from the meltdown after arriving I'm surprised I went for the selfie here. But I couldn't go past the Pont de Alexander (my favourite bridge) without taking a shot of the Seine with the Eiffel Tower in the background. I had Pachabel's Canon playing on my headphones. It was definitely one of the better moments. My luggage still hadn't arrived but I was starting to get into the French swing of things. It was that or stay in my room and cry! Although I did a bit of that too.
I did a lot of sitting in parks and watching other people chat and laugh. No I didn't feel like a loner loser at all. No really. I swear.
While the other people in the park were having a great time with their friends I pretended I wasn't a loner loser by writing in my notebook. I can't quite read what I wrote here but I'm pretty sure it says something like 'I'm so sick of sitting on my own in parks and pretending to write shit. Somebody talk to me please!!!'
This is just after the computer fell of my lap, hit me in the face and split my lip open. As you can see my lips are a little swollen. This was definitely the turning point in the trip. When your own computer punches you in the face, things really can't get any worse. At this point I decided to let go and let Paris be in charge.
I did a lot of praying while I was in Paris. I'm not responsible for lighting all these candles but I may as well have. I was really being a little demanding of God at this time.
There are twelve bedrooms in the castle, as I was the last to arrive I was given the last bedroom known as the Black Room. Considering my state of mind at the time, I'm not sure if this was a good or bad thing. The room was Gothic themed room was beautifully decorated. I loved staying in this room.
The view from my bedroom. Not to shabby!
Starting to feel better here. How can you not when you're living in a fucking castle?! My lip was slowly starting to heal although I wasn't going to be kissing anyone anytime soon. The worst thing about my injury is that it looked like a cold sore. I had to explain to people, 'No, my computer fell off my lap and hit me in the face!' I'm not sure they believed me.
Happy happy. Yes, I'm having fun and sending photos home to family and friends to prove it. My lip was still sore and smiling here didn't not help matters.
As you can imagine I was a little blown away when the cab turned into the driveway and I looked out the window to see this. I had run into some friends in Paris a few days earlier (amazing!) and they kindly invited me to come and stay here with them. I spent four wonderful days here. If you're nursing a broken heart, this is the place to do it! As I didn't get a photo of this myself, I have taken this from the internet.
After returning from Chateau Challain, my friends invite me to join them for a performance at Saint Chapelle. The chapel literally took my breath away. It was one of the most beautiful and memorable evenings of my life. My heart definitely healed in this place.
On the way out of the chapel after the performance I saw this couple and my heart melted. May we all know this kind of love. They were so beautiful.
On my last weekend in Paris my friend 'Cassie' came to visit. Cassie and I lived together in Los Angeles for a year in our early twenties. It was one of the best years of my life. Now she lives in London but she came for a visit and arrived at EXACTLY the perfect time. This photo was taken at the end of what was a very challenging, insightful, healing and life-changing month. My lip has healed and there's a little scar. While it wasn't in the way I expected, Paris certainly changed me for the better. I'm a lot happier here than I was when I arrived!