So we went to visit our daughter in Paris while she was on semester abroad with the purpose of showing her what lengths we would go to take care of her. It turns out she took care of us.
First off we can’t walk. We had kids relatively late so now nearing 60 we have terrible aches and pains and surgeries. So better to Uber around than walk 10 miles a day. Thinking you’re 25 when you’re 60 is not cool. Get your walking shoes together.
Empty nesting is not for sissies. We were so emotional at the spectre of her being so thoroughly independent that we cried the whole time anticipating more losses to come. Buckle up.
Touring the countryside with a friend who can’t drive a stick shift – save it for New Jersey.
Not knowing the language is pure hubris by Americans – learn a language while your brain still works. One day no Frenchman would let me use the bathroom. It didn’t end well.
Last stop Norweigian Air. I of all calm, cool and collected people got tagged for a random security check. The airport was 200 degrees. Practically naked I finally slammed back. I have anxiety I said to the man undressing me. “Nervouse.” Seems he didn’t care. I was about to create an international incident when they finally allowed me to board.
Check your marriage at the gate. If you’re not getting along at home you may not get along in another country either. After we literally blew a fuse in the Air bnb the first day we settled into a routine of eating and drinking our feelings. The final explosion came when he said do you even love me?
As we parted au revoir from our amazing daughter one final time perhaps we realized our job is nearly done. She could get a croissant anywhere in the world whereas we, maybe our best escargots are behind us. But at least we had some fresh baguettes along the way and the best daughter in the whole world.
Photo by Richard Jones