I did one more fire show the night before I left Montebelluna for Roberta’s parents and a friend.
The time here was really special. I feel like I was able to reconnect with some important intangible quality that was lost or forgotten. There’s a lot here I’ve yet to discover. I feel like Italy, or this place rather, is like a second home. A homecoming of sorts. I’m really grateful for Roberta and my friends here.
After Montebelluna, I headed to Paris. I stayed with Jeremy, my classmate from the Thai Massage class I took in Chiang Mai.
When I was in Rishikesh, India, I met a girl, Jennifer, who was headed to Paris shortly after our yoga class ended. I told her she should meet Jeremy because I thought the two of them would get along.
As I arrived in Paris, I headed to a bar to meet Jeremy. As we were catching up, I brought up Jennifer and wanted to know how their interaction had gone. I looked over across the street and saw a girl who resembled Jennifer walking this way. I starred a bit longer and realized it was Jennifer! I was totally disoriented.
What a coincidence that she was walking down the same street in Paris at this particular time! I found out shortly later that she had in fact hooked up with Jeremy and had come back to Paris to spend more time with him.
I was still suspended in disbelief to see these two together in this magical city. It was like something from a cheesy romance comedy.
I was/am glad to see them happy with each other.
Shortly after, we headed to Jeremy’s place for bread, cheese, and wine, then headed over to what Jeremy kept referring to as “the hospital”. It was this property that used to be a hospital that had been closed down and taken over by, I guess squatters, and now the place was filled with bars and art oddities of various sorts.
Not unlike my landing in Italy, I was hit on the head upon arrival with this bat of coincidence, disbelief, and magic. I had to take several moments to check back in with myself that all this was actually happening (again).
The next day, the three of us took a boat tour around Paris. I’ve been here before, but never saw the city by boat. It was really cool to see the art on the bridges that can only be properly seen/ appreciated by boat. There are a lot of bridges here.
I normally intensely dislike big cities, but I didn’t feel this way about Paris. You can see the freshness of the environmental progressiveness throughout the city. There are places to rent electrical cars by the roadside, like bikes. We saw a green energy convention by the river near the tourist attractions. There were informative displays at the subway stops (which are some of the cleanest I’ve ever seen) about climate change.
I can’t tell you how relieving it was to see that these concerns I hold so close are being addressed and implemented on a large city scale, at least to some degree.
The city doesn’t feel nearly as claustrophobic as other big cities, as there seems to be space built into the city. It doesn’t feel like a chicken cage. There are several beautiful green areas spread throughout the city.
July 14 was French independence day. President Trump visited on that day. There were several military vehicles passing randomly throughout the city. I’m glad the various people I interacted with around that time didn’t break my balls about being American. It feels embarrassing to be from the US in place like this, but I felt like the people I interacted with could differentiate between the individual and the corrupt political system their country entertains.
A popular thing to do on July 14 is to go to a “fireman ball”. These are parties at the fire department that serve as fundraising events. After we went to a nearby bar. I met a local there who told my about the patriotism he felt for France. It was one of those funny moments of disbelief to hear someone talk like this.
Its lovely to be here.