Saturday, October 23, 2010

Paris, le berceau

I feel like I’m living in a dream. It’s not necessarily a good dream, but it’s certainly not a nightmare. It’s more like a surreal state of la vie en rose. I woke up one day and realized, I live across the street from the president and three steps from the Champs-Elysées. There is a baby designer store on my block. I’m talking Baby Prada. Baby Gucci. Baby Louis. Perhaps it is due to the fact that classes here are a far cry from the nerve-splitting stress I usually endure in the states or maybe it is the financial security furnished by the Bank of Daddy that keeps me “living well”, but I am now a resident of an alternate universe where everything is so…insouciant. No stress. No drama. No problems. There’s something wrong with that, right?

Before I continue, I want to make it clear that I’m not living the Champagne life, but the only thing stopping me from popping a bottle right now is my low alcohol tolerance. The real problem actually is the lack of passion, good or bad. You would think that a city like Paris would have the poet in me bursting with life and inspiration, but…there is something very artificial about this atmosphere. I even think differently now. I’m not quite awake, yet acutely aware of my altered state of consciousness. It’s a little unnerving. I keep waiting for something to go. No “wrong”, no “right”. Just “go”.

“Go” happened when I was in Angola and spent the day with orphans from the civil war. “Go” happened when my close friend revealed her deepest darkest secret to me. “Go” happened during my mischievous trip to the Houston hood a few winters ago. “Go” happened during an ex-love’s particularly memorable mischievous trip under my hood. “Go” happens during poetry shows, after research papers, at the dinner table, in the arms of my siblings. It happens. But I’m still waiting for my Parisian “go.” I came close when I visited Sacré-CœurThe view of entire city of Paris from the summit of Montmartre, the highest point in the city, broke me out of a six-week long writer’s block. Perhaps it was the short Italian street violinist playing Titanic’s “My Heart Will Go On” that set the mood, but I was moved. Not part the Red Sea kind of moved, but a little moist eyeballs kind of moved. For those of you who didn’t get the comparison, those were both bodies of waters stirring.

What I have learned in this rose-colored “study” abroad is that “go” is out of my control. And while I’m living in a pseudo-dream my Angolan orphans are still sleeping under bridges and the engine under many a hood are undergoing mechanical restructuring. Life is and continues to be. Perhaps this is just life in transit, but I’m not giving up on the possibility of passion shining through this dream filter.

That’s all for now. The next post will be a little lighter, I promise. Bisous!

--Just Kisses, JK

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