Paris – Love Letter to a Stranger

Je T'aime Paris

Je T’aime Paris

Yes Paris is romantic! Love is just in the air; it’s true! How can anyone deny it? The art, the architecture, the culture sprawled all over the walls and ceilings and floors of every corner. betsson zakłady sportowe From the touristy places to every little coffee shop on the paths less travelled; from the elite French restaurants to the lanes selling the Asian food or the cheap pizza slices being sold by Italians; Parisians love Love and Loving!

Eiffel all day

Eiffel All Day

In my four days in Paris; I had it all. There were the late night walks with endless conversations, staying up late to watch the Eiffel sparkle, lying in the parks aimlessly, drinking coffee and tasting exotic chocolates in the quaint streets, the serenade from a stranger and my taking a leap of faith and falling in love and finding the happy ending. My 4 days in Paris were right out of the classic Audrey Hepburn movies with a twist.

My Airbnb flat in Paris was in one of the tallest buildings and I was on the 25th floor. I had romanticised meeting Mr. Eiffel since I can’t even remember. And my first view of him sparkling like diamonds in all his glory had left me frozen in awe. With the Sacre Coeur on my right glowing in soft yellow lights on the hill and the Eiffel glittering I had sat up in the chilli balcony till late in the night. Very late.

No matter who says what about the Eiffel, I promise you, it will take your breath away. I spent a whole day just looking at it from all angles and spent the evening on the lawns, watching it come to life as the sun set. No I didn’t do the Louvre as it takes a whole day and I don’t like the idea of being forced to follow a path, when I have limited time and am so keen on the Impressionist era.

Limburg Orange at Sacre Coeur

Limburg Orange at Sacre Coeur

The next day I went to Sacre Coeur (Sacred Heart) Cathedral. Once you take a day pass in Paris, you can use it absolutely anywhere for public transport. To reach Sacre Coeur, you need to first get to Montmatre. The best stop is Pigalle (Metro Stop). Here is the funny part; you need to walk past Moulin Rouge to get to the Sacred Heart Cathedral! IRONY eh?

Once you take the Funicular, you will reach the mountain top with the view of the entire Paris. And again, it will take your breath away! I was very lucky cause not only was the cathedral absolutely gorgeous on the inside, but I was there at just the right time. The choir was singing. Wait, now picture this; you are at the top of a mountain, with the view of the Eiffel, the wind whistling in your ears, the grandeur of the Sacre Couer behind you, you turn around and enter into a cathedral with frescos and the sun shining in from the dome on top and the choir singing with the voices of the angels. It was ethereal and heavenly. I felt overwhelmed and for no particular reason, my eyes welled up. I think I was just so at peace. Each wall, each turn was full of history and angels and Jesus.

Art everywhere in Paris

Art everywhere in Paris

My friend Craig had flown in from London to join me and as I walked out from there with a bit of a heavy heart, I was avoiding all eye contact with him. When suddenly the air was filled with the joy and sounds of fanfare. Up on the steps of the cathedral, a brass band of old chaps in Orange tees and White pants was revving up the air with “Angels by Robbie Williams”. Oh how my mood becomes a slave to music! Forget minutes, in seconds I was already dancing with the women of the band. Craig started talking to one of the players Peter, who ended up knowing about Travelling Boots! Wait, What? So I meet a Dutch Brass Band in Paris and one of the guys knows about me and has read Travelling Boots??? Can you ever imagine my shock? It was my first spotting ever!! Peter introduced me to Claudia and the others in the band as the Indian woman who travels alone and invited us over to Moulin Rouge for their show at night.

Moulin Rouge

Moulin Rouge

I went through the day almost absent mindedly and even though Craig was tired; he was a darling to come back for me. But at night…. the only busy looking Moulin Rouge area; was a full blown naughty street for adults only (wink wink!) with neon lights and all sorts of description of naked shows. So what did I do? Craig and I took crazy, creepy, naughty pictures infront of the red neon lit Moulin Rouge windmill (Haha!) But in the roll of all that fun we forgot about the band momentarily, and then suddenly tried to look for the sound of a brass band. We had no idea where they were so started asking strangers for the Irish Bar..well that’s all we knew really!

Soon we heard them… ummm.. the cacophony of the trumpets honestly.. and Craig and I dashed towards the sound like the rats of the Pied Piper. And sadly our luck had run out; the band had just finished their last tune! But I was glad to get a warm welcome from familiar faces (not really.. I was terribly heart-broken to have missed all the music). Claudia and Peter, took me by the shoulders and pointed me towards George, the band manager and asked me to hustle him..George looked serious so I mentally prepared a whole speech to ensure I impressed him so maybe they’d play one more tune.

Claudia and me

Claudia and me

But I was wrong, George could barely hear me when I spoke to him, but he knew I was kind of pleading for music and stepped out into the area where the whole band was. Wait, picture this again.. a group of musicians, all over the age of 40.. who had been playing since morning on all sorts of percussion instruments, some were too tired and drunk and sleeping on the tables. He came out and yelled in the midst of them; asking them to wake up for an Indian girl wanted to hear them play. automaty online cz And you know what…they all got up.. cheered for me.. made a circle around me and played Angels for me.. Only for me again… While I stood in the middle.

I was in Paris, travelling alone, and now had a Dutch band called Limburg Orange playing me their favourite tune in the wee hours of the morning.. all looking at me … tired and yet smiling… For me! Yes only for me! They serenaded me! My first ever Serenade! I broke into tears… cmmmon.. wont you? If you had a band of over 20 strangers Serenade you the to a song called Angels while you were a solo traveller in Paris?

Wait; this wasn’t even the best part.. Claudia later asked me what my plans were. I was still overcoming my most precious moments on earth, and told her my vague plans plainly. I hadn’t really decided on my dates and plans so told her that I would go to Belgium for a bit and then Switzerland and then Netherlands. When I said Amsterdam, Claudia’s eyes sparkled and she announced that she was barely 2 hours away from there and that I should come and see her.

I was a few beers down honestly; so I looked at her square in the eye and said.. “I’m a man with no plan woman, if you gonna make an offer.. I just might take it”, and I meant it! She asked me to take her mobile number and to message her later with my dates.

Limburg Orange post my Serenade

Limburg Orange post my Serenade

She was serious. You know the song by P!nk; Glitter in the Air, hear it.. it has a line .. Have you ever invited a stranger to come inside? Few weeks later, I was in Maastricht. A place I had never heard of, with a woman I only met for 5 minutes in Paris. With her gorgeous and intelligent daughter, their adorable dog, in their home and being driven around in her convertible singing songs out loud.

We both are years apart, grew up in different geographies and cultures and yet…. somehow connected so deep and so spiritually that it’s hard to explain at all. We walked in the rain and drank wine while she narrated the rich history of the town to me. I joined Claudia for her band practice where kids from the age of 10 were syncing up some wicked classic tunes along with the old chappies.

I can’t put my finger on what happened to me after this experience. I… I’ve changed! When you meet someone with so much trust and unconditional love for an absolute stranger.. what can I say.. it changes you. Inspires you. Ignites you and Illuminates you.

Yes, Paris is romantic. I for sure found true love there and my happy ending with a friend for life, bound together by the strings of music. With all this news about hatred, I found love! And that is what Paris will remind me of for all my life.

Travelling Boots

Travelling Boots

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