There is a thin line between being bold and being wreckless. Between being open and being naive. Between being cautious and being paranoid. I am testing the balance here in Paris. Last night after loosing my connection to my new American study abroad friends, I ventured off to have a good ole time with some true Parisians. One Frenchman, Vincent, and I carried on learning eachothers' language. I beleive I am truely picking it up! Before I knew it, I was in the center of a large group of drunk French partiers in, coincidentally, a bar with an American/ Canadian theme. They were a lot of fun, but I could tell they couldn't help but tease me a little. I think that if you are in Paris and an American, you just have to accept that there is some hesitation to take us seriously. I completely understand that, especially as I peared around the bar to witness several drunk American students being obnoxious and ridiculous.
As the night wore on, I realized that I needed to find my friend to get myself home. He was nowhere in sight, so I mustered up the courage to face the late Paris streets alone and forge my way home. I was tipped off that there was a metro station a few blocks away, so I picked up the pace and bee lined it for the station. Some how I found it, and found my connection back to north Paris. There were several drunk travelers joining me on the train, eager to make conversation with me. I had the pleasure of meeting one girl as I turned the corner in the station to find her urinating in the stairwell. Always a great way to meet a new aquaintance.
The train ride was a long ordeal and when I at last arrived back at the hostel after a chilly walk home, I realized how I was really pushing it. Running across these situations is bound to happen and late night stragglers see a naive American young girl as a perfect target. As much as I would like to say we are all on equal playing feilds, I know that isn't true. I will be more careful as I party in new places with new people. I will do my best to trust, but also be aware of potential dangers.
So today it is rainy and I have some errands to acheive. I also am unfortunately getting a bit sick. My throat is aching and my back is stiff. I will make my way to the drug store and hope they can help me. Tonight Lisa arrives and the trip will change dramatically upon her arrival, I'm sure.