We'll always have Paris

Prior to my trip to Paris, I've had the plan, like all tourists, to get some 'picture perfect paris' (PPP) photos taken. I've came to a point, when mentally and physically gearing oneself for fashion week, to realize that running around the shows actually require a decent amount of sleep and a pair of really comfortable shoes; both things that I can, quite confidentially, say I lacked during my week in Paris. And when there is time between the shows, one should really jump at the opportunity to grab un sandwich au jambon or even a photoshoot around the Arc de Triomphe.

When I visited a few years ago, the PPP in my memory had plenty of pretty little bistros. No doubt there are still many because whenever I start conversation with a Parisian with the question, 'what restaurants do you recommend?' The answer begins with an exhale, a smile and a blunt reply, 'there's too many to count.' And I would politely chuckle, then wait the person to list them out. But they never do. At most, they'd say 'plenty of bistros and brasseries'. If there are really that many good restaurants, what's the harm in letting me know the few gems of Paris? Overcoming the fact that Parisians are not keen to reveal the secret, there were days when I literally could not find a good-looking bistro that serves a handsome soupe à l'oignon and instead, settled for quick grab-and-go sushi from sushi shop (cravings satisfied thank you Monsieur Robuchon). Then again, I had an incredibly busy week which meant less exploring and also had my fair share of mild harassments from groups of women to 'sign petitions' and a man even dared to claim that I have 'dropped some change' when I didn't even take my wallet out… all in all to complete the whole Paris experience.

Don't get me wrong. I think one of the reasons why people get upset with Paris is because of the overhype in movies and the general disappointment when they can't find 'la vie en rose'. Reality hits when tourists realize Paris  is not actually the idealized land of beauty (hence Paris syndrome which I just discovered actually existed). Yes, there are times of stress when you don't comprehend every single word on the menu or the language barrier… but isn't that also the beauty of the city? To me, PPP is when you stroll around River Seine, watch the Tour Eiffel sparkle at night, people watch at L'Avenue while crunching down un confit de canard. But throughout the week, I've also had the pleasure to explore the real outskirts of Paris, including the Philharmonie de Paris (thanks Kenzo).   I left Paris wanting to convince people Paris is worth it and worth the love if you can manage to overcome that primary stage of Paris syndrome which, I'm sure, more than the dozen of Japanese tourists experience annually. But fear not, because we'll always have Paris.

:: Outfit details ::

Coat - Asos

Blazer - Noose & Monkey

White Shirt - Brooks Brothers 

Trousers - Zara

Tie - Chanel

Belt - Atelier Gustavolins

Sunglasses - Ray-ban

Loafers - Topman

To be continued… #tbc