I see London. I see France.

While in Paris I fell in love. Not with anyone but with the city of love itself. Completely head over heels (and no that is not statement about my general clumsiness). I fell so fast and hard that once  I returned home, I frightened my friends and family by saying that I wanted to move there and before them being so reluctant when it came to the idea of my moving to New York all of a sudden they say, " What about New York? I thought you wanted to move to New York!?" 

And so two, severely jet lagged, silly American's were let loose on the city. And what is the first thing that comes to mind when thinking of Paris? Of course the Eiffel Tower, so we set off on foot from the 6th, our first few steps in the city were as graceful as you would except from Brenna Weeks, stepping onto a vent and we both instantly had a Marilyn Manroe moment, nothing says "Welcome to Paris!" More than accidentally flashing a good portion of the 6th in front of Hermes and being quietly judged by the Parisians and the mannequins up in the window. 

And so we strolled on. Occasionally getting lost, but not caring in the slightest. Much it seems like the French themselves, they genuinely do not give a fuck. Oncoming traffic? Who cares! Just walk, they'll stop! Do you want to have a drink at 9 in the morning? Who cares, lets join you! So we soon made that our motto on life. #FrenchAsFuck

And so we strolled on. Occasionally getting lost, but not caring in the slightest. Much it seems like the French themselves, they genuinely do not give a fuck. Oncoming traffic? Who cares! Just walk, they'll stop! Do you want to have a drink at 9 in the morning? Who cares, lets join you! So we soon made that our motto on life. #FrenchAsFuck

After a 3 mile urban hike to the Tower de Eiffel, we were both completely and utterly jet-lagged and starving. So we picked some charming cafe and sat down. They instantly greeted us with an alcohol menu and my first thought is, "Okay, I am really going to like it here!" We get our drinks, I picked some random French beer that was absolutely wonderful, and so we were waiting for a food menu that never came. We take a look around and notice no one has food in front of them either, Our thought process being, "Okay, well maybe it is too early to eat here!? But it is 6 o'clock! Let us go somewhere else!" So we pay and take our leave. Far more exhausted and famished than before we opt to eating in our hotel restaurant, and as soon as we sit down we are once again greeted by an alcoholic menu and so I say to Casey, "I love a good drink as much as the next person, but now I am fucking starving! Is that why everyone in this city is so skinny? No one eats? Everyone just drinks!"

After a 3 mile urban hike to the Tower de Eiffel, we were both completely and utterly jet-lagged and starving. So we picked some charming cafe and sat down. They instantly greeted us with an alcohol menu and my first thought is, "Okay, I am really going to like it here!" We get our drinks, I picked some random French beer that was absolutely wonderful, and so we were waiting for a food menu that never came. We take a look around and notice no one has food in front of them either, Our thought process being, "Okay, well maybe it is too early to eat here!? But it is 6 o'clock! Let us go somewhere else!" So we pay and take our leave. Far more exhausted and famished than before we opt to eating in our hotel restaurant, and as soon as we sit down we are once again greeted by an alcoholic menu and so I say to Casey, "I love a good drink as much as the next person, but now I am fucking starving! Is that why everyone in this city is so skinny? No one eats? Everyone just drinks!"

 

 

Louvre Bitch, Get Out The Way!

Day II and we decided to venture across the river into the ocean of people trying to get cultured. The Louvre. 

The Sea and then She.   I may or may not have gotten elbowed in the head while getting this shot. 

The Sea and then She. 

I may or may not have gotten elbowed in the head while getting this shot. 

Mona's daily view. 

Mona's daily view. 

People in Louvre.   I know, I am very punny. 

People in Louvre. 

I know, I am very punny. 

If you went to the Louvre and didn't take a selfie with Mona Lisa did you even go to the Louvre at all?   I may or may not have one as well though...

If you went to the Louvre and didn't take a selfie with Mona Lisa did you even go to the Louvre at all? 

I may or may not have one as well though...

Casey. Contemplating life. Or art. Or both.   I told her that the Mona Lisa we had just seen and was in fact a fake, a copy and the poor guidable creature believed me. For once someone goes to art school, the automatically know everything about art, right? 

Casey. Contemplating life. Or art. Or both. 

I told her that the Mona Lisa we had just seen and was in fact a fake, a copy and the poor guidable creature believed me. For once someone goes to art school, the automatically know everything about art, right? 

Same, homie, same. We spent 3 hours thinking that we had seen at least 1/2 of the museum to only realize we had only seen a third of it. 

Same, homie, same. We spent 3 hours thinking that we had seen at least 1/2 of the museum to only realize we had only seen a third of it. 

We found the only part of the museum where there was no one else in the room and it was absolutely wonderful. 

We found the only part of the museum where there was no one else in the room and it was absolutely wonderful. 

I had a hunch it would be a good day. 

On our third day we decided to be very ambitious and go to Notre Dame, Musee de

I'm not typically the emotional kind, but moreas the suffer in silence sort. But lighting one of these in my Mom's memory and being amongst the hopeless in prayer, I just completely lost it. Just being in a church from 1163 was emotional enough for me, and this is coming from someone that is not religious at all...

I'm not typically the emotional kind, but moreas the suffer in silence sort. But lighting one of these in my Mom's memory and being amongst the hopeless in prayer, I just completely lost it. Just being in a church from 1163 was emotional enough for me, and this is coming from someone that is not religious at all...

On the walk over to the Musee de Orangrie, we made a pit stop and ate lunch on the steps by the river, loving life.    

On the walk over to the Musee de Orangrie, we made a pit stop and ate lunch on the steps by the river, loving life. 

 

Actual photo of Casey and I when we were 5 years old. But in our 20's and still super stoked about ice cream. 

Actual photo of Casey and I when we were 5 years old. But in our 20's and still super stoked about ice cream. 

I was in complete awe. Beyond overwhelming. 

I was in complete awe. Beyond overwhelming. 

He was very unimpressed. 

He was very unimpressed. 

While in the first main gallery we ran into friends from home, the beautiful Pino sisters. That's the thing about Paris, you can come from 5,000 miles away and run into people that live right down the street from you. Paris is pure magic. 

While in the first main gallery we ran into friends from home, the beautiful Pino sisters. That's the thing about Paris, you can come from 5,000 miles away and run into people that live right down the street from you. Paris is pure magic. 

After waiting for 10 minutes to "get the shot" I turn around and there are about 20 people with iPhones photographing Casey as well. 

After waiting for 10 minutes to "get the shot" I turn around and there are about 20 people with iPhones photographing Casey as well. 

We started the day at a chocolate factory and then ventured into a place that people are dying to get into. Pere Lachaise. 

She was crying about my last horrible pun. I don't blame her. 

She was crying about my last horrible pun. I don't blame her. 

It wasn't entirely easy for me to be in a cemetery, with all things considered but there was such an unsettling peacefulness about the place. To see how loved people were by having grand monuments built in their honor was absolutely beautiful. I visited the grave of one of my favorite musicians/poets (whatever he would truly wish to be called) Jim Morrison and the grave of my Mom's favorite author, Oscar Wilde. For she described his writing as "eating creme brûlée" and upon my arriving back into the states, I reread "The Picture of Dorian Gray" for a third time. 

It wasn't entirely easy for me to be in a cemetery, with all things considered but there was such an unsettling peacefulness about the place. To see how loved people were by having grand monuments built in their honor was absolutely beautiful. I visited the grave of one of my favorite musicians/poets (whatever he would truly wish to be called) Jim Morrison and the grave of my Mom's favorite author, Oscar Wilde. For she described his writing as "eating creme brûlée" and upon my arriving back into the states, I reread "The Picture of Dorian Gray" for a third time. 

After physically exhausting ourselves we returned back to the hotel where I read, and I would like to say that it was something deep or thought provoking but I'll be honest with you. It was Harry Potter. 

After physically exhausting ourselves we returned back to the hotel where I read, and I would like to say that it was something deep or thought provoking but I'll be honest with you. It was Harry Potter. 

Bellatrix Lestrange came to visit me. 

Bellatrix Lestrange came to visit me. 

I have an obsession with windowsills. 

I have an obsession with windowsills. 

She shoots film too. #ProudParent  But honestly, I don't know from which I feel more pride. Getting more of my non-photographer friends to shoot film or making them fall in love with the show "Parks and Recreation"...

She shoots film too. #ProudParent

But honestly, I don't know from which I feel more pride. Getting more of my non-photographer friends to shoot film or making them fall in love with the show "Parks and Recreation"...

We then ventured into the dangerous territory that is "Shakespeare and Company" I bought, Fitzgerald, Palahniuk and Bukowski. 

We then ventured into the dangerous territory that is "Shakespeare and Company" I bought, Fitzgerald, Palahniuk and Bukowski. 

I love books. I probably read more than the average human should, I just won't admit to how much that is. For I would like you to believe that I have some sliver of a life...

I love books. I probably read more than the average human should, I just won't admit to how much that is. For I would like you to believe that I have some sliver of a life...

We then finished the day off by eating on the steps off the river. I have got to say though, we had many wonderful meals at "fancy" restaurants but this would have to have been one of my favorite meals, just sandwiches from a street vendor.  Just to sit on the river, waving at tourists on their boat tours and eating Laduree's macarons with the sun going down was pure magic. 

We then finished the day off by eating on the steps off the river. I have got to say though, we had many wonderful meals at "fancy" restaurants but this would have to have been one of my favorite meals, just sandwiches from a street vendor.  Just to sit on the river, waving at tourists on their boat tours and eating Laduree's macarons with the sun going down was pure magic. 

Even Mondays in the most beautiful city on earth are bad, with misadventures, car accidents and bed bugs. Oh my! But meeting up with good people truly helped. 

Even Mondays in the most beautiful city on earth are bad, with misadventures, car accidents and bed bugs. Oh my! But meeting up with good people truly helped. 

We ventured down to the metro for the first time to meet the lovely Cha for lunch in Pigalle. After that we soon made the metro our main point of transportation. Even if it did make me very sick once or twice. 

We ventured down to the metro for the first time to meet the lovely Cha for lunch in Pigalle. After that we soon made the metro our main point of transportation. Even if it did make me very sick once or twice. 

I've always loved riding the metro. Even in LA where the metro system isn't all that important for people are not all that dependent on it, but I'd take the train down to Union Station and back just for the sake of people watching. Like this charming child here, this was the one moment where he wasn't picking his butt. Such a lovely sight that was. 

I've always loved riding the metro. Even in LA where the metro system isn't all that important for people are not all that dependent on it, but I'd take the train down to Union Station and back just for the sake of people watching. Like this charming child here, this was the one moment where he wasn't picking his butt. Such a lovely sight that was. 

Butt picker in action. 

Butt picker in action. 

After a couple failed attempts at doing touristy things, being eaten alive by bed bugs and a "car accident" we met the lovely Elena for dinner down by the water. 

After a couple failed attempts at doing touristy things, being eaten alive by bed bugs and a "car accident" we met the lovely Elena for dinner down by the water. 

After dinner we decided to do the ferris wheel by the Louvre, and even if you're not into the "touristy" type of stuff, I highly recommend doing this. We were a bit iffy on paying 10 Euros for a ride but once you see the view you are in complete awe. And I thought Paris couldn't get anymore beautiful, oh how wrong I was. 

After dinner we decided to do the ferris wheel by the Louvre, and even if you're not into the "touristy" type of stuff, I highly recommend doing this. We were a bit iffy on paying 10 Euros for a ride but once you see the view you are in complete awe. And I thought Paris couldn't get anymore beautiful, oh how wrong I was. 

Mega hair envy. 

Mega hair envy. 

This poor child must have sat here for 5 minutes waiting for other people to get on so the ride would get going. The attendant obviously couldn't care less. 

This poor child must have sat here for 5 minutes waiting for other people to get on so the ride would get going. The attendant obviously couldn't care less. 

This place really takes the cake! 

And so we went to Versailles.

Casey made quite a few friends along the way. Like common guys, be a little more subtle. 

Casey made quite a few friends along the way. Like common guys, be a little more subtle. 

And so, we twirled in the halls, met up with another very talented photographer friend from high school, ate macarons and may have potentially had a ghost experience... 

And so, we twirled in the halls, met up with another very talented photographer friend from high school, ate macarons and may have potentially had a ghost experience... 

Edward Scissorhand's dream job. 

Edward Scissorhand's dream job. 

We were on our 6th or 7th day in Paris and we had yet to have a crepe, we were on a mission, but once we had one holy crepe was it amazing! 

And so they stood there for 5 minutes, wrapped in each others arms, crying. 

And so they stood there for 5 minutes, wrapped in each others arms, crying. 

Photo Jul 08, 5 54 18 AM.jpg

"Do the catacombs have wifi?" This is a real question we heard while being 87 steps below Paris. 

It was our last full day in Paris and I felt very much like these gentlemen. Not happy. 

It was our last full day in Paris and I felt very much like these gentlemen. Not happy. 

Hey, atleast I got out of school before getting a tattoo and smoking a couple cigarettes so that way I couldn't be labeled "Art School Cliche" 

Hey, atleast I got out of school before getting a tattoo and smoking a couple cigarettes so that way I couldn't be labeled "Art School Cliche" 

And so we ended our trip by being as cliche as humanly possible and embracing our tourism. We ate escargot and smoked cigarettes under the Eiffel Tower. When in Paris, right?

And so we ended our trip by being as cliche as humanly possible and embracing our tourism. We ate escargot and smoked cigarettes under the Eiffel Tower. When in Paris, right?

And so the following day we left Paris for London and I was not happy to say the least. I kept saying under my breath "But I don't want to go..." And once we got there my thoughts did not change. Casey kept saying "Common, you just have to give London a chance!" But by the second day, she felt the same as I did. London has ALWAYS been a place I have wanted to go to, and that could be thanks to Harry Potter but once I was there, there was such a shift in energy from Paris. Something so drab and depressing, and that could just be the impact that history has had on it that I was picking up, and the entire time we were there we could not put our fingers onto what it was that we were feeling. 

Nonetheless we made the best of it. 

Even if you aren't the biggest Beatles fan I highly recommend that everyone should go to Abbey Road just for the sake of watching people make a fool of themselves walking back and forth across the street while avoiding getting hit by cars. I kept imagining "Frogger" while a constant Beatles soundtrack was playing.   Okay, weird enough I am sitting in my favorite coffee shop and "I Want You" just came on. K, Universe you weird me out sometimes.  

Even if you aren't the biggest Beatles fan I highly recommend that everyone should go to Abbey Road just for the sake of watching people make a fool of themselves walking back and forth across the street while avoiding getting hit by cars. I kept imagining "Frogger" while a constant Beatles soundtrack was playing. 

Okay, weird enough I am sitting in my favorite coffee shop and "I Want You" just came on. K, Universe you weird me out sometimes.  

IMG_6822.JPG
I then dragged Casey into my world of complete and utter nerd by taking her to the making of Harry Potter. I was more excited than the average 21 year old should have been...

I then dragged Casey into my world of complete and utter nerd by taking her to the making of Harry Potter. I was more excited than the average 21 year old should have been...

Got to see this lovely little lady again. The poor thing we dragged her into our world of cliche tourists by forcing her to get fish and chips. 

Got to see this lovely little lady again. The poor thing we dragged her into our world of cliche tourists by forcing her to get fish and chips. 

Before leaving everyone warned us that "The French hate American's! Don't say that you are American!" But we did not experience anything of the sort in Paris, everyone was very kind and welcoming. But in London everyone seemed to be in such a foul mood.

One cold, rainy morning where I couldn't even speak for my body was rejecting London and had this  wonderful cold with a severe sore throat to the point where I could not talk (which I am sure Casey secretly loved), and so we both grabbed the same oversized sweatshirt and yoga pants and went down to our free continental breakfast. A few hours later when we returned to the hotel and in the elevator this couple says to us, "Oh wow, you look so good now! Did you get back late from partying last night? You looked a bit haggard this morning!" In truth we got back at 9 that night and then passed out. And so I say to Casey, "I told you I looked like a homeless person!" and the woman responds, "Oh no, dear it wasn't just you! It was the both of you!" Thank you, charming lady in the elevator. What a lovely compliment. The next morning we were determined to try and look "decent" so I put on a dress and ballet flats and go downstairs and while we are being seated our server says, "Oh, might I recommend this tea? It is great for hangovers!" We look at each other then look at him and say "Do we look hungover to you?" and he just walks away. Like I'm sorry but did we not get the memo that you need a fucking ballgown to go to breakfast? Are we dining with the Queen? No. We just wanted our fucking chocolate croissants without being judged and apparently in London that was a lot to be asking for...

 

After what felt like a very long 5 days we were then on route to my future home, New York. Where we stayed with the worlds most lovely couple, Justin and Kerry in Brooklyn. 

After what felt like a very long 5 days we were then on route to my future home, New York. Where we stayed with the worlds most lovely couple, Justin and Kerry in Brooklyn. 

Sometimes accidental hair campaigns happen in the middle of Times Square...

Sometimes accidental hair campaigns happen in the middle of Times Square...

We then returned to what was once my favorite place on earth (obviously now replaced by Paris) Central Park. 

We then returned to what was once my favorite place on earth (obviously now replaced by Paris) Central Park. 

If you haven't noticed, I have this thing for trains an windowsills....

If you haven't noticed, I have this thing for trains an windowsills....

The ever so generous Kerry took us out on a sail around Manhattan. It was pure magic. And I didn't fall overboard, so that was a plus! 

The ever so generous Kerry took us out on a sail around Manhattan. It was pure magic. And I didn't fall overboard, so that was a plus! 

Hey Casey, were on a windy sail boat, we're not trying to make a Fujifilm XT1 advertisement here! 

Hey Casey, were on a windy sail boat, we're not trying to make a Fujifilm XT1 advertisement here! 

I would have to say a good majority of our trip revolved around food. I mean out of seven key french phrases a good 3/4 of them were about food, beer or wine. So much so that "manger" (to eat) became out favorite french word. We met someone for drinks and in his french conversation we heard him say "...manger..." and we both looked at each other and yelled "MANGER" aka really the only french word we truly knew. And so in New York I took her to my favorite place, Serendipity's, if you have never been or tried their frozen hot chocolate then how are you even living? 

I would have to say a good majority of our trip revolved around food. I mean out of seven key french phrases a good 3/4 of them were about food, beer or wine. So much so that "manger" (to eat) became out favorite french word. We met someone for drinks and in his french conversation we heard him say "...manger..." and we both looked at each other and yelled "MANGER" aka really the only french word we truly knew. And so in New York I took her to my favorite place, Serendipity's, if you have never been or tried their frozen hot chocolate then how are you even living? 

As soon as we arrived back in Lost Angeles, post trip depression hit me like a double decker bus and I decided that I wanted to move to Paris (I have SLIGHTLY come back down to reality since then and am opting for New York once again, although the internal debate between the two cities is so ever present and I keep flip flopping back and forth) and once I began telling friends and family the usual response was, "Are you fucking crazy? (which is debatable) You're not moving to Paris! You have New York written all over you!" The grass is always greener, I suppose. Unless you actually live in Los Angeles where every lawn is brown. We are in a severe drought after all! 

As soon as we arrived back in Lost Angeles, post trip depression hit me like a double decker bus and I decided that I wanted to move to Paris (I have SLIGHTLY come back down to reality since then and am opting for New York once again, although the internal debate between the two cities is so ever present and I keep flip flopping back and forth) and once I began telling friends and family the usual response was, "Are you fucking crazy? (which is debatable) You're not moving to Paris! You have New York written all over you!" The grass is always greener, I suppose. Unless you actually live in Los Angeles where every lawn is brown. We are in a severe drought after all! 

Brenna Weeks2 Comments