In which I talk about stuff

Posts tagged ‘Google Maps’

Dreaming of Paris

A keychain of the Eiffel Tower.
Image via Wikipedia

Someday I’d like to go to Paris. I’ve been to the south of France, a pretty little place called Perpignan, but I was disappointed by the lack of frogs’ legs. It sounded like such a cool thing to eat (I was thirteen). I remember frustratedly trying to order them from the puzzled waiter with my literally translated high school French: “Jambes de grenouilles, s’il vous plait!” I’ve since learned that the term is ‘cuisses de grenouilles’, but it still wouldn’t have gotten me any frogs’ legs, since apparently it’s a northern France thing.

Paris, of course, has more than just frogs’ legs. I did a project on it in primary school, cutting and sticking pictures from French magazines, admiring the shape and structure of the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe, and fighting with my classmates over the best picture of a plate of croissants or the Metropolitan. I remember the pictures of the city at night to be full of such beautiful lights, and during the day to be green and flowery and just plain gorgeous. Just looking at Paris on Google Maps, I’m fascinated by the geometric patterns of the city’s streets, and all the amazing architecture. I imagine I’d spend hours wandering around, filling up the memory card on my camera with everything I see.

My imagination likes Paris a lot. It blends together my memories of the south of France and what I’ve seen on television, and comes up with a dream-like image of sitting at delicate cafe tables, eating pain au chocolat in the sun, of wandering along the Seine, chatting away in French. Never mind that I haven’t studied the language in over eight years and can only just remember how to introduce myself and ask for directions; in my imagination I am fluent. The atmosphere is always very romantic when I imagine Paris. That’s probably influenced by being constantly told that Paris is the ‘city of love’, but I think it really is. Cliches are almost always fueled by reality.

It’s strange that Paris has always seemed so far away to me, when in fact, if I wanted to, I could catch a flight there in an hour and a half. It’s not that far. It’s even fairly cheap. Perhaps I’ll take my girl there one day, sit in a swanky restaurant with her and order escargot and cuisses de grenouilles, at long last. It’s definitely on my Bucket List.