Our first priority when we got there was to get a baguette.
My boyfriend, Vivek, came to visit me in Brussels for a week and we decided to take a weekend trip to Paris, as one does. It was really quite casual. We got on the bus, fell asleep, woke up to a beautiful view of endless fields, fell asleep again, and voila! We were in Paris. It cost me less (in both time and money) to travel between Brussels and Paris than it does to travel between Miami and Gainesville. It’s a shame, really, since Paris is a much more exciting city than Gainesville.
We did all the things tourists must do (Vivek had never been to Paris before, so I proudly showed him around the 3 spots in the city that I know), including spending obscene amounts of money on mediocre food, but wonderful wine, taking selfies with famous art, and walking until our feet burned.
Paris has always been my favorite city in the world, and spending a weekend there without the pressure of a tour guide made it even better. We walked along the Seine, watched the Eiffel Tower sparkle at midnight, and drank some delicious wine that I’ll never be able to find (or afford) again. To say it was magical would be an understatement. I got to see Monet, Da Vinci, Cezanne, and Michelangelo all in one day. The Mona Lisa and I met for the third time and I commemorated our third date with a selfie.
Paris has always been my favorite, so the next few words are really hard for me to think and even harder to put into writing: I like Brussels more.
When I was in Paris, I missed the bad French, cheap food, and confusing street names I have grown so accustomed to. I missed going to work (if you didn’t already think I’m crazy you do now) and the understated beauty of Europe’s capitol. As I sit in my little apartment in Brussels writing this, I wish I could say that the sparkling lights and romantic bridges of Paris still hold my heart like none other. But I can’t. Paris will always be special and beautiful and magical, but it’s a caricature of a city. It’s the idea of Paris that I’m in love with, and will always be in love with, but it’s no longer the best city in the world. Paris was my favorite. But I must confess, the soft lights of Grand Place shine brighter in my eyes than all the sparkle the Eiffel Tower could ever offer.