July 24, 2015

My global Paris connection

The other morning driving along the highway a thought struck me: what if I listed all the places my new-found friends - the ones I have met over the past four years in Paris - have moved to and went on a world trip to visit them?

Paris is an extremely fast rotating platform when it comes to expats in the International community. The average "turnover" at the kids' school is two to three years. My closest "new" soulmate left after only nine months, most of my Flaneuses companions left after the second year and by year number three all but a handful of mums were left.

This year, none of my partners in crime who began their Parisian adventure back in 2011 with us are left. My number of Facebook friends has gone up accordingly and it is a fantastic and efficient way of keeping in touch.

I venture every year to meet newcomers, although the effort decreases as the years go by, I must admit. I have made local friends knowing that I will be sticking around for a while. I have further come to terms with being the welcoming committee  - with a big smile - for all of those who come back to visit.

Michigan, New Jersey, Ohio, California, Muscat, Istanbul, Stockholm, Stavanger, Luxemburg, Milan, Rome, Tel Aviv, London and Zürich all have taken on a meaning other than just begin a city or a state on the globe. Someone now lives there who has taken a piece of Paris with them and by doing so has also carried a tiny piece of my heart with it. Many a new chapter is being written as we continue to live our lives in different places but for a brief moment we happened to be in the same chapter and by spending time together I like to think we have contributed in shaping the course of our individual novel leaving an imprint on each other's stories.

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