“A very hard word. MASSACHUSETTS!”
I’ve dreamt about visiting Paris since January of seventh grade, when my foreign language teacher stopped teaching us Spanish (hated it) and began teaching French. She pulled down a map of the country and pointed out les Alpes, le Seine, and le big yellow star which was Paris. The first French word I learned: le crayon. French for pencil, in case you didn’t know.
In my third year of college, I signed up for an extra class to brush up on my conversational French. I planned to spend that spring’s semester in Paris. Two weeks into the class I realized only one class at a French university would apply towards my degree… It didn’t make sense.
I’m 22 and I’m still dreaming about walking up to the giant glass pyramid in front of the Louvre. I want to see the city as the Impressionist painters saw it (and I’m sure if I take out my contacts I very well could). I want to nibble on a croissant in a cafe like Gene Kelly did in An American in Paris (disregarding the fact that it was a cafe inside a Hollywood movie studio). I want to think fondly of my cute old high school French teacher and hum “Aux Champs-Elysees” as I walk down l’Avenue. I want to look up at the Eiffel Tower and imagine I am Sarah Jessica Parker except NOT sad about being away from my closest friends. Really, I just want to walk down the adorable little streets and hear people speaking that intoxicating language and see them going about their fabulous European-Union daily lives.