Last night I went to dinner at my new friend Eva’s apartment. We've been hanging out a lot lately. She also invited her friend Christiane, who she calls her sister-in-law because she's dating Julien’s younger brother Thibault. Christiane is a 30-year-old Brazilian girl and she met Thibault on a beach in Rio last year while he was on a month-long holiday. Last February, she spent a month with him in Paris and in August, she quit her job and moved here to be with him. She’s basically hanging out, taking French lessons and discovering Paris. We make an interesting trio—the Dutch girl, the Brazilian and the American.
I arrived at Eva’s apartment around 6:30pm with a bottle of wine and we spent the next couple of hours drinking, talking about men, the difficulty of being an expat, our former lives, our jobs, our goals… your standard variety of gossip and girl talk which I really missed.
Around 9:30pm, Eva’s boyfriend Julien showed up and it changed the dynamic of the conversation. He cooked us a dinner of grilled salmon, rice and veggies which was absolutely delicious (what’s up with French men knowing how to cook?) and then sat down to discuss everything from Che Guevara to Sarkozy and Bush, the immigration “problem” in America, the relationship between former colonized countries (i.e. the U.S. and England), racial tensions in Paris, the ban on smoking in public places that France is imposing in January, etc. The entire evening felt so… french. They love a good, long, heated discussion. We left around 11pm—almost 5 hours and the night flew by, I had the best time. It’s so nice to meet new people who you really like and click with (the Rocker introduced us so he was good for one thing at least!)… we three girls are all pretty much in the same boat: foreigners living in Paris, just trying to live out our dreams. We’ve decided to meet up once a week for wine and to practice talking in French (Eva is fluent).
Eva and Julien invited me to join them tonight for the France v. England game—about 20 of their friends are going to a restaurant for dinner and to watch the match (and what's up with the French always going out in huge groups?). I’m really tempted to go since it would probably mean meeting lots of new and interesting people (people who are over the age of 25!) but I was invited to watch with another friend of mine and would feel kinda bad backing out now… we’ll see.
In any case, the weekend of our birthday, we’ve confirmed that we’ll take Julien’s mother’s car and drive up to Amsterdam on Thursday afternoon. Eva has her graduation ceremony and the birthday party will be at a bar on Friday night—before midnight it will be her party, and after midnight, mine :o)
I honestly thought I would be spending my 25th birthday eating dinner by myself at some restaurant (or at least hanging out at some random bar in the city with people I don’t really care for) so this is a nice change of plans… I can’t wait!