I have a bit of a confession to make. I am not the person I appear to be.
Yes, I’m a hard-working, independent (whatever that means) woman. I have good friends, a good job and a good home. I even have a dog. I am reasonably well adjusted and don’t require much for contentment. All should be right with my world. I mean, what do I have to complain about?
The truth is I do suffer occasional bouts of melancholy. I used to think something was wrong with me. I could be going along happy as can be; then suddenly…. BAM! I hit some kind of emotional wall. They call it ‘the blues’.
It’s not the worst thing in the world to have the blues. Some of the greatest thinkers and artists throughout the history of mankind have had the blues. But my blues are not like theirs. For one thing, I am not as talented or intelligent. I have not achieved a level of greatness that gives my blues prestige.
I must simply buck up and carry on, regardless.
But one day it seems the sky opened and I was able to put a name to my blue moods.
I was feeling down in the dumps and decided to clean out a closet. That is when I came across the suitcase I’d traveled to Paris with earlier this year. Upon opening it I found a few items I’d purchased but never unpacked. The items weren’t special, but seeing them reminded me of the two glorious weeks last March, so they immediately put a smile on my face. I was in a good mood for the next three days. That’s when my blues became my Paris Blues.
Since my diagnosis, life has gotten a lot easier. When I feel the blues taking hold I don’t need Prozac, I need Paris and my mind takes me there. I become light as a feather and I find myself able to nibble a bit of cheese without guilt and a glass of good burgundy makes me almost giddy!
From the little French market in my neighborhood to my favorite spot for crepes, I have found Paris can be right outside my Los Angeles door.
There is even a cute little place that specializes in macaron. I say this with tongue firmly planted in cheek as the macaron I sampled would not suit a dog. In my mind I told the proprietor in perfect French that her pastries were not up to snuff. I would not pay even 2 euro for one if her shop were in Paris and perched atop La Tour Eiffel.
A friend suggested that I am going to confuse myself and one day wake up really believing I am in Paris. But in a few months I will return to Paris and I won’t have to fantasize… even if only for a few weeks.
Recently, I had lunch at my favorite crepe place with a friend. Afterward, I left a cash tip on the table. I think I need to stop carrying Euros in my purse. At the current rate of exchange, I almost left the waiter a small fortune.
Have you had the Paris blues before?All images © Cynthia Stewart