She’s the kind of girl you just bumped into the Parisian underground. Black coat, Blond hair, slim and soft pants, the perfect Parisian girl. But then she gave the look to the sky trains sounding like journey on Brooklyn bridge. A glance that spoilt a little secret and hides something else bigger: her life in New York. A life with nostalgia or memories? Clue with Chloé in a New Yorker’s journey along the Seine river.
Chut, streets are oh so quiet, it’s oh Saturday mo’, Paris feeling alone and so peaceful until… she walks the door, zip boum, St Maur station zip boum turn energetic and gets an elegant oily smell. Oh Oberkampf street suddenly swings when Chloé is on the ring. The Parisian girl could be on fire looking for jewelry at La Petite Fripe, thrift shop betraying some New Yorker nostalgia where shoes are literally head over heels or in front of PNY, two last letters like the Big Apple city. The city the Frenchie spent one year and a half.
A full experience in the Concrete jungle where dreams are made of, hers was the city of Big Lights since her teen years. The 14-year-old girl who dreamt in front of the TV of F.R.I.E.N.D.S. setting and Sex and the City shopping center wasn’t expected to embrace this industry in the dreamful landscape of skyscrapers years later… Exhausting working life in the city that doesn’t sleep. « Well, she never stops with around-the-clock underground, shops even Time Square, like an encouragement of going out any time! » And with a tremendous motto : walk, party, eat..
A Bite of the Apple
Big shock in the City of Lights where it is very questionable to come back home decently after 1 AM. Rather than following her American way of life, tracking down some local healthy tastes like burgers in the streets of Paris is what she chooses to do. « All right, the investigation of the best Parisian burger is still on. Until today, I was into Blend with sweet potato French fries but this is not a bad address, very tasty with matured real Cheddar cheese. » confesses the girl finishing some onion rings of the return of the cowboy burger. Junk food was fun but the blond Parisian young woman enjoyed the cooking variety in the city with Mexican, Thai, Italian, Chinese food… And French cuisine? « I missed cheese so much! » she wipes. « We managed to find some Frenchies coming back home who could bring back smelly products in their luggage. Beware of the customs! That’s bad American can imitate French wine but not cheese! And for drinks, there were everywhere but it was as expensive as for a long drink! » she said.
All Aboard for Broadway
Because the girl allocated her budget on another entertaining field, a relaxing hobby which took her towards Last Minute deals’ queues. But for a non standing activity. Because the girl is alive with the sound of music and musicals. On VHS tape, astonished 10-year-old girl at Grease big show, then on Broadway stages where she has mythical, popular, indie or obscure drama dancing theatre moments. « The worst concept could be Carrie, the musical in Off Broadway… Very …surprising. » Her passion survived jet lag and moving out the musical theatre remains New York shelter. Which ones? « Parisian scene has refreshed since some years especially Châtelet theatre with magnificent shows like Les Parapluies de Charbourg or An American in Paris, awesome English-speaking musical, so cool to discover it before Broadway. But the genre become more and more attractive in Paris and so French creations are increasing like with Mistinguett, so French theme, it’s huge and good. Thanks to this cultural exportation, I had the chance to see Flashdance or Le Bal des vampires, from the Polanski movie, very impressive and funny, in Mogador before Cats… « But froggie audience asked for a translation, even of pop hits songs. « Well, it could be weird or add exoticism but references are still the same. What is called « chanson française » is more independent than pop music, you may need more cultural background, in English, if there is a good beat and people star dancing, there is no language borders. » she admitted.
An American style in Paris?
And it is still in the audience that the girl kept giggling at .. American sketchs at the French show of New Yorker stand upper Sebastian Marx. « Oh his jokes about French language were good insights and his accent is so cute! » remembered Chloé. A memory which revives some expats moments. « Well your can’t cheat American people, thanks to your accent they understand that you are French. But there was something more. My roommates used to say that I had the perfect outfit of a French girl, something more classic, more chic, or more scared of bad tastes of the American girl. » she laughed. « The cliché of « la parisienne« is so exotic for random New Yorkers and sometimes a phantasm… But feeling like a foreigner is very weak, we were so many « strangers » in the night of the city. Everyone is an expat even American people. My friends were mainly from all around the world even from rural American states, that’s why you feel the cosmopolitan city, or maybe because the Parisian is more showing off than the New Yorker. » she smiled roguishly. « Because who can picture the New Yorker? We heard a lot about hipster or the Jewish New Yorker but what about the random New Yorker?« she inquired. Good point. The multi-culturalism of the city enables the expression of oneself easily with a real dose of freedom! A freedom that steps down sometimes around the World Trade Center. « I arrived in NYC 10 years after 9.11 and American people are still affected by this event and it’s not over, that was so awful. But the reconstruction of the place sounds like moving forward » intro mites the girl two steps for over monitored Eiffel Tower like the consequences of Charlie attempts. « But you know American are so enthusiastic, for everything and you have the feeling that everything is possible. But I’m very happy to be French, for now, the first aim is to go back there for one holiday week, I hope. » concluded the Parisian girl with a staggering smile.
A ticket to New York with the Playlist