You know I love Paris and all things French. More often than not, one can find me wearing my “joie de vivre” necklace. For me, it’s a reminder that each day is a gift and a joy. Each day is meant to be enjoyed.
The French know how to live. Specifically, they know how to live without explanations, without justifications, without guilt.
Walk down the Champs-Elysees and see women strutting in their sky-high stilettos and perfectly tailored pants. Their hair is coiffed with nary a strand gone astray. And their lipstick? The one that is just the right shade of cranberry? It’s applied with the precision of a painter.
These women are not on their way to a fancy French party. No, no. This is simply an ordinary day in the life.
Sit at a café and watch one of these sophisticated sirens enjoy wine, cheese and melt-in-your-mouth dessert. Not because it’s her birthday, but just because she wants to.
She may even light a cigarette. Even if she doesn’t want to smoke, she might just let the air billow out, the cigarette dangling between her dainty fingers as if nothing is there at all.
She’ll walk away not counting calories, not feeling guilty and not having to explain herself—her outfit, her makeup, her appetite—to anyone. You’ll watch in awe at what you have just witnessed. Someone who has indulged and accepted.
Indulge and accept. In other words, just live.
I thought of this the other night. I was invited to dinner with two of my favorite ladies. As we sat and perused the drink menu one of these fabulous women said, “Pick a drink. If you don’t like it, get another. And save room for dessert. Let’s act like we’re French tonight!”
I sat back and smiled. “I love it!”
So we did.
Nous avons mangé. Nous avons bu. Nous avons ri. We ate. We drank. We laughed.
For just a couple of hours we were fancy free, guilt free and problem free. We indulged without complaining, savoring each and every bite of our meal… and chocolately rich dessert.
I know it’s not wise to overindulge too much.
But one night?
Parfois, il faut vivre un peu. Sometimes, you have to live a little.
Thanks for my French-inspired evening with two inspiring women.
J’ai de la chance. I am lucky.