A HOME AWAY.

Maybe it’s because my father is a French chef. Maybe it’s because I took the language for four years of out of my twenty-seven. Could it be that I was an old French woman living in St. Germain in the early 40’s?

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At the Louvre; Wearing Ang-StudioBeret by Asos and Shoes by Saint Laurent.

You’ll be surprised to hear that after traveling to almost 24 countries, I can only pick out a handful of cities I am most comfortable to consider completely uprooting for. One of them being the city of lights.

We are creatures of habit. Everything from the momentum of coffee brewing, to perhaps the number of times we hit snooze in the morning. Some gather confidence to break through, others, not. (I confess).

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Daily morning rituals with Sisley Paris – Skin First.

My days include hitting the snooze button about three times to 7:45 am. Strolling my fingers across the bedside table to make my way onto my inbox. Slipping into the easiest thing I find and pairing it with a healthy pair of sneakers, I pour on pounds of dry shampoo onto second day hair and run down the street to the nearest cafe to order my usual cup and yes, sit and do absolutely nothing for at least an hour. (I confess again, judge me).

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Near Arc de Triomphe; Wearing Commando bodysuit, Giant Vintage Glasses

The hour usually consists of healthy inspiration from stranger’s personal wardrobes that I visually pin to my memory for future use while sipping on my cup in between stares. The French, similar sapiens of my kind, make me feel like I almost belong, spend hours on end at cafes ordering cup after cup — Minus my lack of distressing smoking habits and absent native tongue, thanks to the cat naps spent in my French classes with Mademoiselle Cermak. 

The art of their attitude, their confidence in completely rocking 4th day hair and how they take smudged kohl liner onto a whole new level of cool, leaves me in awe. The French make what could be the worse thing look like effortless. Nothing is ever too polished to communicate a less interesting life which truly explains “slept in” hair and dark circles romanticized with finger-blended sweeps of black kohl. In all my endless cafe wasted hours, I’ve never laid eyes on a French woman with an ounce of foundation.

I think we ought to learn a thing or two about effortless perfection.

Wearing Rhoda Wong.

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Wearing Snow Xue Gao.

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Wearing Cadieux skirt.

The more I visit the city, the more it feels like home. This time in particular, I found a permanent apartment I could visit more often and call somewhat mine. Old hardwood floors that tell a story with its every creek, vintage wallpapers and the scent of Chanel No. 5  filling the entire space,  fulfilling my old soul like nothing else. The highlight of the flat: A perfect view of her very self, the Eiffel towel right within the living room. The perfect distraction in my opinion. 

Getting around almost felt like second nature to me (all thanks to Uber as well, yet another confession). Ordering in French got easier the more I listened to the way their tongue swayed to all the syllables and accents. Manners, came too easy, almost like breathing. And voila, my hair seemed to get bette with wear and a generous spritz of Oribe’s Gold Lust Dry Shampoo, my new staple.

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She ignited something within me no other culture or city has. Boldly pushing me to walk out like I just rolled out of bed (however confessing that it really took me two hours to look like that) in a very je ne sais quoi attitude. Maybe it’s because my father used to make me French pastries while growing up. Maybe it’s me taking four years of the sexiest language there is. Maybe it’s because my grandma used to teach me French at the age of 10. Perhaps it’s because my mother gave a name so difficult to pronounce elsewhere that I hated my entire childhood due a number of mispronunciations (getting called Jo-ann, Janine, Jody, Jenny, Jee-anne and so forth) while growing up — that coming to this city and getting it pronounced right felt like I was home.