The first round of Au Revoirs after only two years in Paris was tough. Many of the friends our family had made upon our arrival were heading on and seeing them leave hurt like hell.
Over the following years I realised that maybe WE were the lucky ones because so many of the leavers would have rather stayed in Paris. So for some years, I convinced myself that I was the fortunate one. My kids never quite bought this idea, needless to say!
I do admit I have toughened up a little. Friendships made later on are not quite as intense as they seemed to be when we first started our Parisian adventure. However, despite my resolution of being brave every year one or two people's farewell words and gestures have me tear up immediately.
It breaks my heart when I see the children hugging their little buddies in the school yard with tears in their eyes and their mums looking on helplessly also in floods of tears. It hurts just watching them.
On the other hand, these emotions are a strong testimony of how close one becomes in a short amount of time, how bonded one feels and how many memories one has created together.
Imagine having to leave a place you had called home for a few years without a tear in your eye or a chip in your heart?
With this in mind, it is with a glass of champagne that we celebrated our friendship today during the traditional end-of-school-year picnic, thankful to have met each other, hoping that one day our paths might cross again.
Bon Voyage et à bientôt mes amis!