I just got back from Paris. Except maybe for Sydney, Paris is the city I love the most in all the world. I went with my friend Charlie - who, incidentally, just passed her PGCE - and I think it's fair to say that we both had a whale of a time. Charlotte seems to have the ability to do anything she puts her mind to, including pushing me through the streets of Paris for hours, looking at the sights, stopping for coffees, doing a little shopping as we went. There is simply nothing better than exploring such a great city with one of your best friends. I must say that charlotte astounded me this holiday, but I think she thought it wasn't that big of a deal. Her thirst for life and her warmth and humanity makes her a truly remarkable person, and one whom I am honoured to call one of my best friends.
Giving a complete step-by-step account would be far too tedious, and I could never recapture the sense of fun and freedom I had. Highlights included getting to the front of the crowd to look at the Mona Lisa - we were let beyond the barrier, but if you ask me its just a picture of a bored woman; going for a boat trip along the seine; going up the Eiffel tower (for a discount!) and, of course, euro Disney! Degree or no degree, you can never be too old for Disneyland, and wee both had a great time zooming about the park skipping the cues. another highlight was eating something we decided to call 'cow ib a pot' - a giant dish of about 6 types of meat on top of potatoes and saurcraut.
These are things which I will remember for the rest of my life. The sense of fun Charlie has is infectious, and I have never felt so alive. Trips like this make me feel like I can do anything - with friends like charlotte, the sky is the limit. I now feel ready to return to my work - and, to this end, visiting the home of cinephilia was an advantage, for it has inspired me. It was probably a combination of the city and charlotte's joix d'vive that has refreshed my appetite. Travelling always seems to have tat effect on me, but this time, because it was a more or less independent trip, that effect is redoubled. There's something I cannot quite explain - I now feel a sense of satisfaction, great admiration for charlotte, happiness, sorrow that its over, and eagerness to go again.
I think we both would like to go again sometime. Who knows: with any luck, this will be just the first of many such adventures.
[Edited 06/07/2008 at 12:36:21 - added a bit]