paris

Sinful Sunday, Week 240: J’aime Paris

This is me–at my usual seat at my favorite bar in Paris near my hotel, and where they always remembered me even though I have only been there once a year since my first trip. Ironically, I never got there this year to my dismay.

I really want to go next year to show Paris my love…

J’aime Paris

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More Sinful Sunday here:

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My Heart is With Paris…

I am very sad tonight, because I love Paris…and my heart is there now…

This is a picture from my first trip there, from the top of the Tour Eiffel–which is black tonight…

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Sticky Note No. 9

I have not done a sticky note in over a year. Charlie has been doing them lately, with much nicer postcards as I would expect from her! But I saw my blank pink stickies in my wallet, and became inspired by the cut on my finger which I acquired today in a much less romantic way!!! As I started to write, a Paris train ticket slipped out from between the pages…

…so this is for Charlie, go read her stories.

she looked down at (the) perfect triangle shaped cut on her finger now. she looked out at emptiness, well france outside of paris. just wide, wide areas of green and people actually living their daily lives. she sucked on the cut from closing his cufflink…

paris as muse

20140502-183929.jpgIf I had to write this post as a detailed report of every photographer I saw and what they were trying to do with their work at this exhibition, I would not do it. I did not like doing that in grade school, and I certainly would not write for pleasure that way. Suffice to say that, I went to the Met today to see their Paris As Muse exhibition, and it served me well…

Paris always inspires me, inspiring me for years before I even visited. Once I went, it seeped into me, became part of me. To define how and why, I am not that eloquent. As soon as I became aware of this exhibition (which is closing this Sunday), I knew I had to go. Sadly pictures were not permitted. The photographs were filled with shadowy people, but mostly architecture and streets. There were a lot of Brassais, who I have been obsessed with forever. He captured the dark side of Paris, and made it look bright. A Man Ray photograph of Meret Oppenheimer was in the collection as well.

Some of the photographers were connected with surrealism, which is my favorite movement in modern art. Like Brassai, it captures a dark side of art. It has been tagged often as being misogynistic, but this does not hinder my appreciation of the style. It was this ode to surrealism, combined with the body of forty photographs that comprised Paris As Muse that ended my writer’s block.

I have a short story I am supposed to write, but it was not materializing. I realized after the idea came to me tonight, that I was afraid of settling. Afraid of settling for an idea. Subconsciously I knew what I wanted, but nothing that I was coming up with was it. All my ideas seemed like a caricature of what I really wanted to write, but now I have got it.

All that is left to do is write it, it which of course will be based in Paris…

Paris

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New York is the perfect city to live in if you are going to travel the world, it is incomparable to any place else that I have been. I feel proud and happy when it is my destination after a trip somewhere. My love for New York was completely full and undivided…

…until I went to Paris.

I wanted to go to Paris since I was a little girl, doesn’t everyone? I wanted to go, was always planning for the potential trip and finally I went last year after Eroticon 2013. London was another desired destination, but there was no way I was going to be that close to Paris and not go! After the conference, I hurried to bed for an early train to take me to Paris. In my taxi from Gare Nord, with my charming driver who knew very little English, my eyes were so wide. I kept expecting to hear accordions in the background (when I did on a train I would have tipped the accordionist if I had change).

I was afraid to go to Paris in a way, because I was so in love with it already I was afraid the reality could not live up to that sentiment. The first thing I discovered was that it is a real city, not a museum. People live there, and I tried to be very respectful of that even though I was gawking at everything I saw. Paris is smaller than New York City. As weird as it sounds as a native New Yorker, I hate crowds. I cannot imagine living in a very small town, but sometimes New York is overwhelming. Paris meanwhile is not empty, but you can walk down a street by yourself and hear yourself as well.

On every corner there was a cafe, restaurant, chocolate store or art museum. The things I live for…Sadly there are a lot of bookstores too, but my French is very light. I know how to say perfunctory things, but cannot elaborate the way I do well…here!

I stayed at the same hotel for two separate trips to Paris, and I am planning to stay there for the third trip as well. I love the arrondissement where I have stayed, which is bad-mouthed in all of the guidebooks and good! I want it to stay that way. I have barely eaten outside of the neighborhood, and the last time made friends with the bartenders who served me free snacks. There is a cheese store across the street from the hotel, and I still dream of the cheese I bought there…

Paris is for me a lovely place to exist and be hidden at the same time. As a visitor who is not fluent in the language, I am not an active part of the scene so I can be a voyeur. I enjoy it intensely because Paris is beautiful. On my second trip, I started to see how I could walk from place to place instead of taking the Metro. I started to feel like I was getting the hang of things.

Of course, the erotica editor and writer in me had to go to the Musee de l’Erotisme. I went to Pigalle on a rainy Saturday, down the block from the museum is the Moulin Rouge–with Starbucks across the street! You are not allowed to take pictures there, but my best memory was on the third floor I think, with a wall that told the history of prostitution in Paris. I walked that whole floor so intrigued, reading everything that was written.

Someone asked me why was I going to Paris again, and I answered because it is Paris! I was incredulous that a person could ask such a thing. The only thing about Paris that is a challenge for me is the language barrier, but someday it will not be a barrier either. I am a communicator, I cannot let it be a barrier…