I’ve heard about people relocating to other countries and completely reinventing themselves. Suddenly creativity is unleashed, intelligence overflows into the minds of previously simple citizens, and entirely new personas emerge. That’s what happens, right?
Not for me. Ten years after being voted “Most Accident Prone” in high school, I’m still breaking bones and accumulating injuries at an alarming rate.
I had dreams of becoming more gracieuse* during my stay in Paris, and in the city’s defense all the essential pieces of the puzzle are here: a charming locale, winters devoid of ice and snow, and a slower-paced culture. However, the pieces to a puzzle looking something like disaster are also present: cobblestone sidewalks, bicycles for rent every few blocks, and the strong urge to wear heels while in the fashion capital of the world (higher alcohol content in the beer doesn’t help, either). Alas, since moving to France, I have broken/injured a finger and a toe, fallen halfway down a flight of stairs and acquired several assorted inglorious battle wounds from my long-fought war with numerous enemies, known to Interpol as the terrorist organization Les Meubles.**
Image credit: explodingdog.com
But perhaps I’m looking at this all wrong… For someone who literally thinks to myself “Don’t fall, don’t fall, don’t fall” every time I descend stairs in heels (which is multiple times a day), and who sees every “Attention!”*** sign as a serious threat to my physical health, I have been relatively unscathed as I sprint to the metro after reaching the bottom of said stairs or ride a rented bicycle across one of the most congested cities in Europe. Really, Paris is like a beautiful-yet-poisonous urban jungle filled with deadly ninjas and I’m just a girl trying to look cute while conquering this metropolitan maze and kicking their little ninja asses.
Image credit Uma Thurman: FRANCO ORIGLIA/GETTY IMAGES
I am optimistic, though, and I like to think that maybe it’s not too late for me. Heck, 28 years of being a klutz doesn’t have to be an indicator of what’s to come, right?! My birthday is around the corner, and maybe the start of my 29th year is also the beginning of a new, more graceful future (cough, cough)! But, to be on the safe side, I won’t hold my breath. With my luck I’d pass out and break something on the way down…