Wednesday, May 2, 2012

I'm A Little Scared of Paris

I am sure that any Parisian who reads the title of this blog post just smiled and congratulated himself/herself on a job well done.  It's true though, I've let myself get scared over the thought of going to Paris even though I know its going to be fantastic. 

See the thing is, when I get it in my head to go somewhere, and especially somewhere I plan on staying for a while, I have to learn as much as I can about the place. I read everything. And when I say everything, I mean I really do read it all. I read current and past issues of local mags, papers, every nonfiction book of history, books of art, travel guides cover to cover, travel stories, dig up every travel article I can find from every publication-- even read some in skateboarding mags, pet mags, eco mags. If it has been written, I will read it, note, and then file away the notes into an ever growing database of info that I keep. 

I really do obsess and get all OCD about things sometimes. 

But back to my being scared about going to Paris. I think anyone that is planning on going to stay in a foreign country experiences a mixture of nervousness and excitement. Paris, in addition to being a beautiful and romantic city, is a little bit intimidating and Parisians make it their business to keep the rest of us as intimidated as possible. 

Knowing this, I still decided on Paris. And when I did, I got down to the reading and filing. The more I read though, the more and more intimidated I get and now I am even a little scared. A couple weeks ago NetGalley provided me with an advance copy of the book, Paris Revealed.  I will be reviewing it in the future, but for now let me just say that while I like it, it has managed to scare me shitless. 

I have actually had nightmare scenarios of all the things that could happen to me when I get there. You know, kinda like those nightmares you had growing up where you had to do something scary in front of the class only to realize you were in your underwear and everyone is pointing at you in and doubling over in ubber crazy peals of laughter. 

Even more stressful is that Paris is the one city that I do not have any friends currently living in. I always know someone where ever I go, and its kind of a safety net and comfort just to know that I know someone if something were to go wrong. Last year the last friend living in Paris decided to move, to Germany. 

I have to admit that after reading through half of Paris Revealed and waking up to the nightmares, I was seriously reconsidering Paris and dug out my European city pro/con list.     

That list turned out to be a blessing in the end because I got to go over all the pros and I am back to the nervous excitement. Now the only thing I have to be scared of in Paris are the potential tummy aches and really bad allergic reactions I will undoubtedly deal with when I give in to the urge to enjoy some cheese.