Poetry and faux Paris

This weekend I was in Vegas. I had an interview for a position as a flight attendant at the Paris hotel. A faux(fake) version of Paris. Totally equipped with the Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe, and even faux metro entrances. I thought that it would give me a taste of what I missed, and maybe make me miss Paris less. Au contraire. Everything reminded me of Paris, except the magic was missing.

Unfortunately, I didn’t get the job. Before you become sad for me, I didn’t really want it after they gave me more information. Being a flight attendant is all about the benefits and the company culture. This particular company didn’t feel right.

Now, there were a few good things that came out of this weekend. I got more interview experience, I found out I don’t love Vegas, and I read a book of Poetry that made all of this bearable.

I read Wild Embers by Nikita Gill. There are so many poems in the book that I could share, but I wanted to share the one that initially made me buy the book.

Fire

Remember what you must do

When the undervalue you,

When they think your softness is your weakness,

when they treat your kindness

like it is their advantage

You awaken

every dragon,

every wolf,

every monster

that sleeps inside you

and you remind them

what hell looks like

when it wears the skin

of a gentle human.

 

 

This poem, and all the others in the book are made to encourage you to be your best and feel your best. Also, teaching you to listen to yourself and to do what you really want. I am not sure I know EXACTLY what I want. But at least now I know when things don’t feel right, and when they aren’t meant to be.

 

Fairytales exist.

They always have.

We just have to rewrite them

Over and Over again

till they fit

 

Keep on Dreaming ( continue de rêver)

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Everyone has baggage

In my last blog entry I was talking about dating. I’m trying to be more open to people. I am like a super sarcastic seemingly nice person, with a huge brick wall around me. Actually, let’s change that to marble, it’s harder to crack. If someone breaks through, it will be a miracle.

I was thinking about how much shit I have been through. How much I would have to trust someone to tell them all of that. If I thought about my past as baggage, I would have to pay a shitton of extra fees. I was so weighed down it’s not even funny. Now, my life is so light and breezy I only need a carry on. There is maybe a handful of people that know ALL about me – People that know everything. I have some amazing family and friends. To find someone on their level, who I respect and love as much as these amazing people, seems daunting.

I don’t think about it very much, though. I have dreams that don’t involve this. I think about traveling and being a flight attendant more than anything. I think that is part of the problem. I don’t want anyone to get in the way of that. I am definitely not the girl who puts dreams on hold for someone. Trust me, I will resist liking someone as much as possible.

The best part of being more open to people in general is that I have made amazing new friends. More people that are teaching me to be open with my life. People that are funny and honest. I tell them my shit and they tell me theirs. Because let’s face it, we all have baggage.

Good or bad.

 

 

Au Revoir Barcelona… Oh wait, it’s Adios.

Last weekend I took a quick trip to Barcelona. I arrived at 12pm Friday night from Paris and left Sunday night at 8:00. It was not enough time to see everything. But, it was enough time to see that I want to return.

I took Spanish in high school. That was a waste of four years of my life. The basis of my vocabulary when I was in Spain was Si, Hola, Adios, Gracias, and De Nada. Barcelona, like Paris, is a big city with many tourists. So, getting by with only English was easy. The problem with me was the “French mode”that I was in. I would use Oui, Bonjour, Au Revoir, Merci, and de rien more often that the Spanish words I know. It’s like when I came back to the States I instinctively said “Pardon”(in a French accent) when passing a lady in the airport. I added the “me” because I realized I was in America now. I had now become an 80 year old southern woman. So, the whole trip was me saying, “Oui, oh Si, ugh I’m sorry.” speaking 3 languages like an idiot.

P2251283.JPGNow, enough about my horrible language skills. Let’s talk about the highlight of the trip. Sagrada Familia. Now, if you have never heard about Sagrada Familia, this is a link to their website here Sagrada Familia. Basilica de la Sagrada Familia is Antoni Gaudis masterpiece that has been under construction since the late 1800s. I have seen a lot of Cathedrals and Basilicas in Europe. However, this one is so detailed that it is going to be hard to beat in my mind. Everything was thought out and has a meaning behind it.

There is a Nativity side and a Passion side of the Basilica. On the Nativity Side there are three doors. Jesus in the middle, Joseph to the left, and Mary on the right

The Passion Side has columns that that are meant to look like muscles. The carvings are deliberately made to be more square or rough on this side because of what it represents.

 

The inside of the basilica was modeled after a forest. Gaudi made the columns on the inside look like huge trees. The side of the church where the sun rises has huge stained glass windows in cool tones. And the side where the sun sets is in warm tones. The light reflecting inside the Church is really what you notice. Colors dancing on all of the walls.

 

 

I took the lift up to the tower on the Passion Side of the Basilica. I researched when I bought my ticket and that at side is supposed to have a better view of Barcelona. The view was amazing! I also think the line was longer for the tower on the Nativity side. So, if you are going, maybe choose the Passion side. Overall Sagrada Familia was my favorite part of the trip because it just blew my mind. I just kept thinking about how Gaudi got thousands of people to commit for hundreds of years to his vision. He just designed something so ambitious and people are still trying to achieve his goal. Amazing.

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My favorite picture from Sagrada Familia

Saturday I needed to eat something. I had researched food in Barcelona before I left and discovered La Boqueria. It was was highly recommended by many websites and blogs. Mainly because of it’s fresh fruits and juices. Also the variety of vendors and food choices. This was a close call for my favorite thing in Barcelona. The atmosphere and the people were great. The juice was only 1 euro (at the small booth I found) Some were 1.50 euro. So, walk around a bit if you want to save money or find the best deal. There are so many vendors. Also, If you see something that looks good I suggest you get it at that moment. I saw a few things and thought, I’ll come back if I don’t find anything better to eat. After walking and not finding anything else, I couldn’t find those places even though I tried. I had to settle for some fried seafood that I didn’t really eat. But then I found some ice cream that was like heaven. So, overall it was a success.

The best thing about traveling by yourself and staying in a hostel is that you meet new people. Saturday night I got dressed and sat down in the common room. I was going to rest and then find a place for dinner. I ended up talking to some people and met a guy who was from Lafayette, LA. It really is a small world. I then had an invite to dinner and met three new people in the span of 10 minutes. That night we played drinking games with Sangria, and tons of people who were staying at the hostel joined.

Sunday I had a ticket to Park Güell for 10am. Waking up for a shower and everything before was tough because of the Sangria, but I made it there. If you don’t like to walk I suggest you take the bus from the Metro to Park Güell or take a taxi. The walk to Park Güell is about 15 minutes and it is not the easiest. It makes the views great but the walking includes going uphill. Although, the one thing I noticed in Barcelona is how Sagrada Familia and Park Güell would be easy for a handicapped or older person. Sagrada familia has ramps and an elevator for the towers. Park Güell has access to the front gate by taxi, and most of the going up you can do by ramp. That is very rare for Europe.

 

Park Güell was beautiful and the stone formations were very cool. The architecture of the buildings is interesting to look at and there is a great view. I don’t know if I would recommend going to Park Güell if you only have 2 days like I did. It is very time consuming and kind of out of the way. Very worth it if you have the time, though. I loved it. I also saw Casa Milà and Casa Batlló from the outside. I did not see the inside of Casa Batlló, but I wish I would have. The exterior was absolutely amazing. It was so interesting and cool.

Last but definitely not least, I went to Barceloneta Beach. The beach was very beautiful. There is a nice boardwalk that you can walk along to get there from the metro. There are restaurants and a big marina with huge sailboats. If you do not want to walk along the boardwalk, there is a bus that will take you strait to the beach. The bus stop is right by the metro, easily named Barcelonta. The walk is nice, but if you are crunched on time, the bus is a good option. After about a 20 minute walk you will make it to the beach. The beach in Barcelona was absolutely beautiful. I did not have the greatest experience because I decided to go touch the Mediterranean ocean. Well, the next thing I know, my jeans, shoes, and socks are soaked. So, I guess I have been in the Mediterranean ocean. It’s about the memories, right?

 

Overall Barcelona was an amazing trip. I discovered a new love of Gaudi and I made some new friends. I also answered the question Spain vs. France, which is better? I have no idea at this point. But Barcelona is a must visit if you are in Spain. It has the best of everything. Beautiful beaches, good food, nice people, great history, and amazing architecture. Definitely not as pretty as Paris, though. Every building is pretty here. I was asked about liking Paris because some people say it is dirty, which I have not noticed at all. I am told people love or hate Paris. My answer to this is that all big cities are dirty somewhere. Its like New Orleans. Don’t judge it based solely on Bourbon Street. FYI: Watch out for dog poop in Barcelona too. Except, it doesn’t make sense to me at all there because they actually have grass. So, It must be a European thing.

That’s all for now.

Besos,

Jolie

 

 

 

Parisians don’t know how to walk.

Now I want to talk about something that happened today. This is my biggest pet peeve of living in Paris, or near Paris. The people who live here do not know how to move out of the way. You stay to the right and I stay to the left. Simple right? No.

It’s not so bad when I am alone, I can just weave my way around crazy people who are like freight trains and act like no one is in their path. However, when I have the two kids in a stroller it is very hard to move the stroller out of the way. The looks of disappointment that I get on the street, as though I should be the one moving are so surprising to me. I have two kids who are probably 25lbs each in one stroller. It is not easy to move this thing.

Now, I don’t want to make all people seem like buttholes. Some move happily. And I have to think that some are not paying attention because most people walk with their head down or with headphones. But, This has happened multiple times over the period I have been here. It is a little crazy. I do like the fast paced walking in the city, but not moving for a woman and a stroller is inconsiderate.

Also, I have some advice on how to not look like a complete tourist when you come to Paris. When I arrived here I was in awe. I looked up and around everywhere I went, and not paying attention to where I was going. I was talking with two friends about how we each stepped in dog crap at least once when we arrived. It is because you are just not paying attention. This is how people get their stuff stolen and look like a tourist. So, my advice is to look down. It will help with the poop thing. (Paris is not dirty BTW) rich people are just lazy.

Do not smile at anyone. They will hit on you if you are the opposite sex and they think you are attractive. (Or the same sex, if that is your thing.) It happened to me in a park my second week here. I was just trying to find an au pair picnic. When I casually passed a guy with a polite smile. Normal for the states but not in France. I hit on someone without knowing it.

The lesson is to keep your head down, but still pay attention because people walk like maniacs. Look out for dog poop, even in the fanciest neighborhoods. Do not smile at French people, unless you think they are cute. And I have to admit a lot of them are.

Also, don’t let this post deter you from visiting. Paris is basically the New York of Europe. People work a ton and want to get home to their families. They think it’s weird for a stranger to talk to them because it’s a huge metropolis. A lot of the reason they may be misunderstood is because their sense of humor is VERY sarcastic. So, of course I like most of them, because I have been told I am a smart ass.

Bisous,

Jolie

 

Why Judging Rory Gilmore Sucks

So, I just wrote an article about how French people are more accepting than Americans. It ended up being a piece about how when you get to a certain place in your life everyone expects you to be “someplace.” Lets talk about expectations for a second.

Have you watched the new Gilmore Girls? If not, stop here because this is going to be full of spoilers. I came across a Buzzfeed article by Sheridan Watson, who is a young woman about the same age as Rory, and a writer. But Sheridan appears to have her shit together. She’s a writer for Buzzfeed, and has some pictures with Tyra Banks from I don’t know what exactly. All appearances point to “that’s cool” when she tells someone what she’s up to.

The title of the article is Rory Gilmore Sucks. Yes, I know Rory has her issues. She’s a complete mess. The thing with Paul is stupid. But seriously? They are never together and if he didn’t get the clue after two years of barely seeing each other, he has problems.

And…What did you expect with her and Logan? Maybe for them to be engaged and living in an upscale Manhattan penthouse?  No. He has always been a creep. And she has been in love with him. You can see her heart breaking. It’s sad. When she says “We had a deal, no strings” It’s like, C’mon Rory, you are such a liar.

Saying Rory Gilmore is a horrible person for cheating on Paul with Logan sucks. These things are the expectations we put on normal people. People make mistakes. I will say that Rory Gilmore is a character in a show. Exaggerated for our viewing pleasure. The drama and comedy of the situation with the Wookie was put in for fun. But She is supposed to be at a crossroads in her life. Give the girl a break.

Now, I wouldn’t have been so mad about this article if Sheridan would have stopped at the affairs and drunken one night stands. But then she goes on to say that Rory sucks at her job. Can we not judge everyone for not doing as well as we are? One of the quotes from the article is “You Know why your big meeting with Conde Nast keeps getting pushed? Because they’re a huge conglomerate and not every editor can meet with someone who had a couple of good freelance articles?” Well, if I had a meeting with someone and they kept pushing it, I would be very frustrated and upset. Especially if it concerned my career.

If you watched it, you know that Rory is at a point where she is not sure what she wants to do. She is a writer, but ends up finally figuring out she wants to write a book about her and Lorelai. After that, they get in a fight about what can go in the book. In the Buzzfeed article, Rory is called a bitch because she gets in a fight with her mom. So, every daughter in the world in now a bitch. That is real life, so I really don’t know how that is justified to be in there.

She is also called out for being a “complainer.” There is one time when she talks to Jess about her situation. That is when he helps her figure out her next step. Writing a book. I am in the process of figuring out my next step.The thing that helps me the most now is talking to people. You can call it complaining, but I call it venting. This Buzzfeed article was one accomplished writer seeing another fictional writer as a failure.

This article was me venting. The expectations that women put on other women is ridiculous. Even fictional characters get slammed if they aren’t accomplished or doing life “the right way.” I just wrote about how others in America expect us to have it together. They want us to be at a certain place in our lives. Well, get over it Buzzfeed. Be more accepting like the French do. They wouldn’t be so prudish about all the sex either!

FIN