I have only been there twice, but like so many of us, my heart yells "Paris!" at me when I least expect it.
  1. @jakebrandman and I went to Paris last June to kick off our long-anticipated, belated, month-long European honeymoon.
  2. It was Jake's first time, my second.
  3. Before my first visit, just a few years earlier, I had memorized the map of Paris, mostly based on where to find the best chocolate, farmer's markets, and tea shops.
    It was in Paris that I switched from tea to coffee, mostly so I could look cool standing at counters and practicing my vaguely aloof look.
  4. I found, to my surprise, last June, that I still had the map of Paris imprinted in my brain. And in my heart. I couldn't get lost.
    Oh, just walk this way, Jake, and we'll find that place I visited with Eileen 4 years ago for the best pastry ever, called Le Suisse. I'm sure it's just around the corner from here. And it always was.
  5. We stayed in the Marais for 5 days. I chose where to stay based on the Saint-Paul Metro station - climbing up those stairs, I'd had my first ever view of Paris...A tiny merry-go-round, frenchies drinking cafe au laits outside, sweet chocolate shops, PARIS...It was a moment I'd never forget, and I wanted my new husband to share the same memory.
    Nothing is too cheesy or romantic for Paris, right?? I dragged him to all the places I'd loved best, and we found new ones together.
  6. After 5 blissful days of wandering the dizzying, old streets, we moved onto Provence. Avignon was our next stop.
  7. That's where we made our sweet baby. TMI? Sorry not sorry. France is for love.
  8. We would go on to Avignon, Eze, Tuscany, Florence, Positano, and Rome. It was, indeed, the trip of a lifetime.
  9. But nothing touched Paris. Especially for @jakebrandman . As a writer, his heart leapt to think of the people who'd walked those streets before him. As a film buff, his brain nearly exploded just dreaming of the works that had come from this city.
  10. I can't believe what has happened in Paris. I can't fathom the amount of hatred and brainwashing and systemic lying and misery and propaganda that would make people kill like that.
    My brain really can't wrap itself around this event. I'm too scared and overwhelmed.
  11. I read a first person account from a 22-year-old girl who played dead for over an hour at the concert hall while people were singled out and shot to death around her.
  12. My heart. My heart hurts so much. I don't even know what to do.
  13. Of course it's not just Paris. Of course it's Beirut, too, and Kenya last April, and so so so many other places where hate and sickness and sadness and extremism just destroy everything. I am talking about Paris here because it is where I have been, and loved, and this is my personal narrative.
  14. I have nothing smart or helpful to add to the conversation. I just want to be another voice pouring a little more love into the world right now, and I thought I could sprinkle a little here.
    We all need so much.
  15. Last night, I kind of woke my baby so I could cuddle him back to sleep. I realize that's kind of fucked up. But I come to him whenever he needs me, so tonight, I let him hold me when I needed him.
    Ok I didn't *totally* wake him, I just stood outside his door, breathing his name until he whimpered and then decided that meant he needed a cuddle. Sue me.
  16. @jakebrandman and I live in NYC because of our careers, and because in many ways, it's awesome here. But I was here for 9/11, and those same feelings of terror are coming back.
  17. That's really why I wanted to cuddle my baby tonight. When he cries, I hold him close to me, and I can feel his little body soften in my arms. He rests his warm, sweet head in the crook of my neck, and sighs. I know that he feels safe.
  18. But I can't keep him safe, not really.
  19. And I don't know how to deal with that.
  20. Oh, my heart, my heart.