La vie Parisienne,
"the Parisian life"-----it can be everything you see in movies: spontaneously strolling past the Eiffel, casually buying a crêpe, sipping a cup of coffee on the edge of a rustic, cobblestone corner whilst indulging in seven different types of cheeses.
Rest assured, these are all daily habits that are easily within one's reach.
However, let us not forget the duality of the term Study Abroad!
Behold, the beautiful Bibliothèque publique d'information, or as the French call it, B.P.I.
Opened in 1977, it has become the ultimate public library that Parisians of all ages go to for a
hearty, quiet study session.
Not only is it free of charge and open to everybody, but this architecturally pipe-like building has a small museum inside and even organizes cultural activities from time to time! This includes exhibitions, film projections, and even speaker events!
Although studying is the last thing on any person's mind when studying abroad in Paris, B.P.I. is situated in a primal location that takes the ease off of studying.
I must say, it is quite an experience to study in peace, as well as joyful anticipation, when right outside, is a beautiful square full of young, bustling French university students, innumerable cafés and a gigantic shopping center just a mere 10-minute walk away.
Quite honestly, I have found that studying in Paris, there is no need for incentives at all.
Being given an opportunity to live in such a historically rich yet timeless city, if even for the briefest period of time, is enough to keep a person going.
The happiness comes from the most mundane activities that have been transformed into moments of surreal recognition.
Yes, I am studying at a library
I am studying in a historical building, located within a geographical landmark, immersed within a completely different cultural surrounding! It's that moment when you realize that although you are studying now,
in just a matter of twenty minutes, you can be exiting the métro (subway) stop to the Eiffel tower, the Louvre, Le Jardin du Luxeumbourg!
That is exactly what I did.
There is no time like nighttime to get a spectacular view of
the Parisian lanterns aligning the roads,
the cafés that appear charming and elegant during the daytime
but look cozy and full of light and life as it gets dark,
and of course,
La Tour Eiffel, who never ceases to make a luminary statement.
The acknowledgement of experiencing and absorbing all of the cultural digressions around me makes the light from the Eiffel that much more magnificent, comforting,
and on a rainy day such as this,
Being able to live amongst such beautiful pieces of history does nothing but feed my curiosity to learn, experience, discover, and certainly become
an individual who has breathed in more of Paris.
Monica Park is the official Fall 2013 CEA MOJO of Paris, France.
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