16 November 2015
I don't know why I fell in love with France back then, but I did. I loved the language and had a knack for it. I had already studied French for six years before I went over there at the age of 20. I turned 21 in France that year.
I've lived in Aix-en-Provence for six months, Grenoble for six weeks, Rouen in Normandy for a year, Paris for five years, and now Saint-Aignan for 12 years. In between those years in France, I lived in Illinois, Washington DC, and San Francisco. That said, the two poles of my existence, the ones that tug at my heart, are France and my birthplace, coastal North Carolina.
Today I leave the N.C. coast one more time to return to my second home. Leaving home to go home — that's the story of my life.
I'll be back in touch when I get to Saint-Aignan. Tomorrow morning I'll be waiting in lines at the airport north of Paris, waiting to have my passport stamped one more time, collecting my heavy suitcase, and running to get on a train back to the the Loire Valley. There, I'll be able to relax again, enjoy being back at home with Walt, and go for daily walks in the vineyard with Callie. North Carolina will be a kind of dream.
I hope my arrival in Paris this time will be better than my arrival in 2014. International travel is always an adventure. Oh, the photo on the left shows the Tour Saint-Jacques in central Paris.
I climbed to the top of the Tour Saint-Jacques on a little spiral stairway a couple of years ago to enjoy the views from up there.