According to the calendar on my computer, it is my third weekend in Paris. Debbie and I found a tea house next to our flat. Unique necklaces adorn the walls and dangle down from the ceiling. Some walls are covered in shelves holding novelty teapots, cups and books.
Each with our pot of green tea, we sit and reflect on the days and weeks so far.
Things I’ve done in Paris in three weeks:
- Cut my own hair.
- Saw a homeless/drunk man get escorted off a metro. It’s difficult to imagine what that scene would have looked like in a US city. The security officers seemed very kind as they shook him saying, “Monsieur”.
- Ate snails.
- Saw my high school Latin teacher while she was here visiting!
- Paris Animal Show. Easily the highlight of my time here so far.
On the daily commute, we’re bombarded with advertisements in the metro station. One advertisement has caught my attention from the first day riding the metro.
After three weeks, the date for the Paris Animal Show has finally arrived. Along with our French classmate Le Python, Debbie and I had breakfast and took ourselves down to Porte De Versaille, a large exhibition hall. I know myself in large public exhibitions. I want to interact with the animals and ask a lot of questions to the animal breeders. Prior to entering, I asked Le Python how to ask some basic animal questions and wrote them down in a little notebook. I was sure to preface all my questions with the statement “Ju suis etudiante” before reading from my notebook, and everyone was very friendly with answering my questions and understanding my rough French. I asked things like, “May I hold [insert animal]?” “For how long does [insert animal] live?” “At what age does [insert animal] reach sexual maturity and start breeding?” “How many babies does [animal] have at a time?” “How much for [animal].”
Needless to explain, I was very excited and ran away from my friends and held all the animals I could get my hands on. I held several snakes, puppies, and cats. I tried to bargain with the breeders to buy an animal. Unfortunately, no one wanted to give me a pet for free, despite my pleading “Ju suis etudiante”
The above photo depicts me with a little curly haired cat I tried to barter for on the basis of us both having curly hair and clearly destined to be together. The woman would not budge from her price of 500 euro. I suggested 200 and moved up to 250. Sadly, we did not reach a negotiation and I had to leave this little fuzzball with the breeder.
I saw these cat carriers made out of small oil barrels. I also saw these cat paintings.
Le Python and Debbie had a great time playing with cats and dogs as well.
Upon entering the venue, Debbie was approached by a lady in a cat costume and correctly answered some trivia questions and won a large envelope of edible money.
After seeing thousands of animals, I had to be escorted out of the exhibition by Le Python and Debbie. I consoled myself with a Mille-feuille when I got home.