Thursday, May 16, 2013


I cried Monday night, the puffy eyes, runny nose kind of cry that makes your whole body tremble.

My last semester of graduate school is ending--only two late May modules and one summer course remain--so most friendly faces are returning to the States (or another country of origin). My lease for this chambre de bonne is up in July so I have decide where I want to live and whether I can afford a real studio or a flat-share. My internship at a Parisian start-up is starting so soon.
And in two weeks, I'll be 25. It's an exciting time! But, it's a scary one, too. I'm not sure I'm ready for the real world again, and when the real world is a French office environment, I actually doubt it. I'm in more financial debt than ever, and have less social support than before. Basically, I have no idea what the f*** I'm doing. Was it naive to assume I'd have at least some things figured out by now?
My little brother is transitioning, too. Two months ago, in response to an email from him, I said all of the above. Then I continued: "I'm just trying to take each step at a time and put all my efforts towards things that feel right . . . I figure, eventually, the next opportunity will make itself clear to me. I hope so, at least." Clearly I'm better at articulating optimism than embracing it.
I think too much. But, every now and then, I don't. The week before last, for instance, I met Lara for dinner at Officina Schenatti. We received the absolute friendliest welcome since she knows the Italian chef and waitstaff, in addition to a complimentary glass of prosecco, ricotta amuse-bouche, and toasted focaccia topped with a tomato spread, fresh basil, and buffalo mozzarella.
Our plats of linguine with clams, squid, and prawns (for her), and pan-seared scallops over braised lentils (for me), and a tiramisu dessert were beyond comforting. The company and conversation, even more so.

Gemütlichkeit is a German word roughly translating to "a situation that induces a cheerful mood, peace of mind, with connotation of belong and social acceptance, coziness and unhurry." It has a similar sentiment to the Danish hygge; the word I entitled a Facebook album with recent photos from home. Just as I'm looking forward to two weeks in New York (with the boy!) in June, there's nowhere else I'd rather live than Paris. I love being abroad. I'm so glad this is my reality. But, I do cry sometimes, and I do miss everyone, and I do question... everything. Thank god for him, and her, and my small, sweet community here and now.

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