Deep Breaths

October 8th marks the beginning of the second vacation I’ve ever taken without parental supervision.  And while this may seem a little sad given the fact that I’m 26 freaking years old, I have to admit I actually like travelling with them. They’re decently fun, my mom loves to shop as much as I do, plus it doesn’t hurt that they pay for a lot of the expenses. Let’s just say my dad likes to spoil his little girl.

The closer I get to putting my ass on that Air Canada flight for Paris, the more excited I get. Just one week left until my first European adventure, and I can hardly sit still long enough to get any work done. The planner/organizer in me would much rather be researching the best metro routes and places to eat instead of reviewing Health & Safety policies.

But as excited as I am, and believe me I’m really really really excited, I’m also quite nervous. Which you probably think is super crazy since I’m going to a place I’ve dreamt about visiting since birth, or possibly even conception.  So to follow up yesterdays post about all the exciting things, here are all the things that give me a little anxiety.

– I’ve traveled quite a few times, but never outside North America.

– I’ve never been on a flight for more than four hours, and flying gives me anxiety, so Shelley and Jennifer have been warned that things could get interesting.

– I don’t speak French, like, at all.

– Being robbed by a gypsy.. Paris apparently is full of them. Or so Google tells me. I’ve never been to a place where pick pocketing was a prominent issue.

– I’ve used public transit exactly twice in my life. And both times I had someone with me who knew what they were doing.

– Travelling from the airport on the RER and then having to walk a few blocks, all while toting my 28″ spinner. Its large yes, don’t judge. It’s necessary for all the shopping. Understood? That’s a long way to go pulling a suitcase and praying no one tries to steal from it.

– Running out of cash. Obviously this worries me. Most times I’ve traveled to the states, the currency was close to par, so having to be aware of conversion wasn’t much of a concern. Euros however are quite a bit more than the Canadian dollar. So I don’t want to accidentally spend more than I should and lose track of how much I have left.

– As much as I’m looking forward to the food, I can be a picky eater. When I eat out, I always choose safe options than I know I will like. That’s going to be difficult with the language barrier. Don’t want to accidentally order frog legs, or something else completely disgusting.

– I’ve never been on a train. And we will be taking one out into the middle of nowhere to visit Beaumont Hamel. Crossing my fingers that we can get direct transit and not have to do transfers. I don’t want to hop on the wrong train.

– I tend to get sick often when I travel. I’m not sure if the climate change doesn’t agree with my body, or if its just bad luck. But it would be quite terrible if I got sick on this trip.

I’m sure there are more things, but I just can’t think of them right now. I’m too big a ball of anxiety trying to make sure that I leave enough money in my bank account for all the bills that need to be paid while I’m gone. Ugh.

Annnnnd I’m still looking for a few people to take over some posts while I’m away, I’d hate this little piece of the web to get neglected while I’m frolicking around France.

0 thoughts on “Deep Breaths

  1. What an amazing opportunity! I'm sure most of the things making you nervous are very normal! Its good to be aware of possible issues, but try not to let them take over your excitement! Be aware of your surroundings but have an AMAZING time! I can't wait to hear all about it!!!

  2. As long as you're not flashing money around you'll be fine. I've traveled to Paris a few times and never had a problem. Never even felt unsafe for that matter! Lots of people will try to meet you halfway and attempt to speak English or even speak it fluently if you attempt French first. Have an amazing time! The first trip to Paris is magical! x

  3. Thanks Amanda. I had a few relatives (who are admittedly a bit paranoid) tell me about all the gypsys and pick pocketing, and who told me to wear a money belt. They made me concerned.

    I'm planning to use plastic most of the time to avoid the flashing of cash.

    And I have a phrase book to help with the French.

  4. Oh, and if you just attempt to try to speak a little french, the natives will be kind and more willing to help you! S'il vous plait will be your main word- please. Pronounced si (with a short i, like sit without the T) vu play. If you want to go all out, and have some fun rehearsing on Air Canada (which is actually the airline we used as well) here is a free French Pod Cast which teaches the beginning basics of navigating around:

    Lastly, I'm sure this changes depending on the rate, but we made the mistake of transferring our money into Euros at our stop in Canada, thinking it would be cheaper because everything is more expensive in Paris… (Also those dang Canadians talked us into it) But it was actually cheaper to do it in Paris because the money is exchanged through less hands, making the exchange rate cheaper. We lost about $20.00 doing it in Canada first. So just wait.

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