As excited as I am about finally, finally moving to Paris, I am acutely aware that I will miss lots and lots of things about my hometown/homeland. As my remaining days tick down, here are some things I want to do as often as possible before I leave, because I suspect I will be missing them monstrously.
1. Eat Tex-Mex. Often. Like, once a day. Washed down with a frozen with salt, of course.
2. Take Sawyer to dog parks where he can run free like the wind.
3. Walk into stores and understand what is being said to me/around me/ about me. Then speak back to those people and have the right words come out in the right order. Such a luxury!
4. Do all my errands in my sweaty workout clothes, with no make-up, hair in a pony. When I think of how much time I will be wasting making myself presentable before I hit the streets, it makes me cringe. What is with those people??
5. Be handed drinks with lots of ice.
6. Have a mani-pedi every other day.
7. Go to Target and buy lots of crap I don’t need.
8. Drive my car on the open road until I get bored.
9. Pop into Blue Willow Bookshop and talk books with my homies.
10. Wrap my arms around my older daughter and cover her with kisses.
11. Go to the Big HEB and buy everything I need for a week’s worth of meals, PLUS a bag of steaming hot tortillas. Then rip into said bag of steaming hot tortillas on way home, because they are that freakin’ good and nobody can see me in the privacy of my own car.
12. Do all of the above in flip-flops. Because Paris doesn’t like flip-flops. Paris looks at you like you’re out in your underwear if you wear flip-flops. Have I mentioned how much I love flip-flops?
13. Order cocktails that taste like I expect them to AND cost less than $20 apiece. Yep- you heard me. It’s enough to drive a girl to not drink.
14. Go outside and sweat and then come inside and NOT sweat.
15. Watch Food Network.
I’m sure I will think of another fifteen things before I go to sleep tonight. What would you miss if you were moving to Paris in a month? Inquiring bloggers want to know.
18 responses to “Top Fifteen Things I Want To Do Before I Move”
hmmm, did you forget to put stand in line at the DPS??
Having just been there, I can relate to all of the above, and I was only there for 3 days!!! How about using a public toilet that is larger than a shoe box, if there is one at all. Now, no one I know no one really likes using a public toilet, but after you have tried to navigate a Paris hidey hole, you will know what I mean. You really exercise bladder control over there!
Yes or you can pay 1.50 euro and get a really clean one in the department stores!
Going to restaurants and sitting next to someone who is not smoking!
You are so freaking right!!! I often thought when I was still living in Galveston how nice it would be to not have to drive anywhere….now–I miss my car! And getting dressed like I’m going to a fashion show just to walk 10 steps across the street to grab a loaf of bread-(which I feel like an idiot ordering) is ridiculous. I have seen people waking around in workout clothes but that’s because they are either going to the gardens for a run or coming home. I have seen some flip-flops here and there–and I think they were Parisians wearing them. They were the cute leather ones–not the kind you buy at the surf shops or Old Navy. And how I miss HEB and Target!!! We can miss the US together when you get here…I have found that Monoprix and the BHV are going to be the only stores that I can find some similiar items I’m used to. We’re moving Sept 25th to the 7th–we’ll be somewhat closer then. You guys are in the 8th right?
Yes- near St. Philippe du Roule metro stop. Can’t wait to hear about your apartment! When do you come get your dog?
Hi there! I briefly met Elissa here in Paris, and of course I haven’t met you, Kate, and I hope neither of you will take this the wrong way, but you need a bit of an attitude adjustment when moving to Europe, because it is NOT the US, it is VERY DIFFERENT here. My husband is English, and I’ve been coming here for 20 years now, so I had the advantage of knowing what I was getting into before moving here 3 months ago. The beauty of Paris coninues to amaze me everyday. And it has the best transportation system in the world- far better than London or NY. People here work to live, not live to work, and they get a lot of vacations and holidays and have the luxury of enjoying their free time.
Yes, cafes are very old here, and the bathrooms are tiny, but that’s because they were often established before indoor plumbing was the norm. The bathrooms are an afterthought, squeezed into whatever space was available. Apartment buildings often had shared toilets on each floor-as recently as the late 1980’s in fact- so the fact that every apartment now has it’s own private bathroom is a major upgrade!
And yes, apartments are smaller, kitchens are smaller, buildings are older, and no, there is not a lot of room for a whole bunch of American stuff. We’re looking for an unfurnished apartment in Paris right now, and it’s not easy; and I’ve lived in NYC so I know a thing or two about small, expensive apartments! But this is actually how the vast majority of people live in the world- be it Tokyo, London, Hong Kong, NY or any other major city. Americans just don’t realize how much more living space they have in the US, much more than most people actually need if they were honest (I’m talking to you McMansion owners!)
I realize it’s difficult to move out of your comfort zone, but the sooner you come to appreciate the positive aspects of your new environment the happier you will be. If you keep comparing it to the US, you are bound to be disappointed. I did my research, figured out what I needed to bring with me, and will be figuring out what to do to make life here work for me.
Okay, I’ll get off my soap-box now, and I hope I didn’t offend anyone, I just feel that you need to keep an open mind when moving to another country and not constantly make value judgments or comparisons to your culture, because I think that will just set you up to have a bad time here.
Good luck, Kate, and I really hope the transition goes smoothly for you!
Perhaps the light-hearted tone I had intended for that post did not shine through as brightly has I had hoped. It was not meant to be judgement -laden or critical of France at all. As much as I appreciate the cultural differences between France and Texas, and plan to embrace them, I know I will miss things about home, just as I will miss things about Paris when I return. I imagine that even the most seasoned, well-adjusted ex-pat could tick off things she misses about home, and in the next breath tell you how happy she is to be living in Paris. I plan to be that girl within a year!
Thanks for reading my blog!
We are going to leave him in the country with my parents. He just wouldn’t like it here. After seeing where he would have to potty and having to walk with me on the sidewalk with lots of people he wouldn’t be able to cope. He is very antisocial to people and other dogs. Right now he is living with my parents and enjoying the country life. He also has a cat that is his best friend and I don’t want to break them up. There is no way the cat can come either–he wouldn’t make the 9 hour flight.
Oh- I’m sorry- I know you will miss him. You can come walk my dog in the freezing rain anytime you want :).
We miss him dearly–I am able to see him and the cat on Skype. He recognizes my voice but gets frustrated that he cannot see me or find me…I guess I shouldn’t freak him out like that. Oh and yeah–I don’t miss walking him when it’s cold or raining out!
Okay, time for me to play devil’s advocate. What would I miss? Apart from some good friends and a few family members … ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!!! I would give just about anything to be able to move back to Europe which feels much more like home to me than the States. Btw, there are loads of foreigners in Paris (including a really big Irish, American and English contingent) and actually the last time I was there for any length of time which I’ll admit was a good few years back, there were a number of Tex-Mex restaurants …. one of them near Les Halles if I remember correctly. Bet there are loads more now. As to bookstores, while you’ll miss talking books with good friends, I’ll bet you’ll love the English and American bookshops there apart from all the fantastic French bookstores. I’m sure you’re probably already familiar with Shakespeare & Co. which is an old favorite of most English-speaking ex-pats and also serves as a good meeting point and reference center (people used to leave ads for everything there). Paris is also a very dog-friendly city and is full of wonderful parks. Given the big ex-pat population I’ll bet you’ll find loads of foods that will remind you of home too. Maybe when you first get there you’ll want to touch base with some club for ex-pats (for example the American Women’s Club) to get your bearings, allow you to speak and be understood with ease and to feel a bit more at ease during your first months there. Anyway, I’m always available via Skype, FB or e-mail if you feel the need to submit yourself to more of my impertinent comments or possibly useless suggestions. In any case, I wish you loads of good luck in your new Parisian life! You’ll love it, I am sure!!
THanks, my friend, for dashing all my hopes of homesick blues! Am I at least allowed to miss my daughter? You may need to come visit and point out the obvious to me when I get pouty!
Yep definitely allowed to miss your daughter! As I said, family and friends are always to be missed, but as for the rest, I’m sure you’ll find good substitutes in Paris. It’s such a wonderful city! I’d be more than happy to visit! Would that money and time allowed me to do just that! Save me a place just the same. You never know …. Good luck and bon voyage, Kate. With your bright face, intelligence, wit and positive attitude you’ll conquer the City of Lights in no time! Bisous and baci from Rome (for the moment)). I’ll keep an eye on your blog for updates.
Will the gendarmes confiscate ‘les flip-flops’ at the airport? It’s downright unAmerican! Love reading about your upcoming move, Kate.
Hey Ron- I love seeing your name on my comments! Thanks for subscribing. Just watch me beat any gendarme about the head and shoulders with les flip-flops should they even think about confiscating them!
Fresh tortillas v. fresh baguettes? I don’t think you’ll actually miss THAT aspect of HEB…
My internet connection has been out 10 days !!!! What I would miss is having my meat well done. So here’s one last time for TEXAS!