Walking through the oppressive, heavy fog in La défense this morning (which, unsurprisingly, does not photograph particularly well), I found myself giving in to a creeping feeling of sadness; sadness that the very welcome period of rest was over, sadness that my stint of lazy days with the Purrito was now very much at an end, sadness that these steps covered the final distance on the path that returned things to “normal.” Vacations, as all things, must eventually come to an end. This knowledge did not, however, stop me from wondering whether the chilly tendrils of dense air hitting my lungs was the source of my discomfort, or simply a fitting accompaniment.
In need of rest, we made a conscious effort to spend this year’s winter break in a more relaxed manner than that of last year. While I did update The List and even went so far as to attempting to update The Schedule, we wound up discarding both and doing more or less whatever floated into our heads. This isn’t to say that we did nothing; we wandered into no fewer than four marchés de noël (La défense, Les invalides, the terrible one on the Champs-Élysées (completely unintentionally), and the one in Rouen), found new places to eat and drink (oh the joy of wine flights), wandered through a surprisingly-crowded Louvre (we tend to feel like we have the place to ourselves when we go in the evenings), saw an exhibit or two (the incredibly-disappointing Guerres secrets and the incredibly-depressing Sites éternels), watched an unusually high number of bad Christmas-themed movies (Jingle All the Way is indescribably awful), and managed to make it out to Rouen for our now-annual fête de réveillon.
Mistakes were made, and errors committed: we did not have a chance to see the small herd of sheep that were set loose on the grassy areas behind Place Vauban. Our early decision to delay ice skating meant that we did not skate at all, as the crowds in the week between Christmas and New Year were far worse than we had anticipated. We did not watch the highly-probable-to-be-depressing-as-fuck Joyeux Noël, which has been on my watchlist since March. We skipped out on our original plan to hit the Hemingway bar before heading to the Louvre. My phone decided to die.
Thus a post that started out as a snarky recap of the La défense Christmas market (in the event that anyone was wondering, there was no music whatsoever in the one shop this year) before ballooning to encompass the last couple of weeks draws to a close, leaving me sad and, to be perhaps overly honest, a touch lonely.
The Purrito just smiled at me, though; all, it would seem, is not lost.