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On our second in Paris we woke up a bit later than planned, thanks to the thousands of Uber drives and walking and general wondering where we were, which wasn’t all that bad considering we got so tired and sleepy early the day before. We needed the sleep.
On our last day in Paris we made sure to tick off the remaining boxes in our list and make sure that we get everything seen, bought and done before our cab came to our hotel for our 8:15pm flight back to Gatwick Airport.
Day 2 of our Paris trip found us gazing lovingly at l’Arc de Triomphe, one of my favourite landmarks of the entire city.
I actually found the Arc de Triomphe to be my favourite landmark in the whole of Paris, maybe because I was unprepared by its beauty and detail. @valombao was so excited and was raving about it even the day before, much to my confusion. All that time I thought the Arc de Triomphe was just like the Marble Arch in London. MAN, was I in for a surprise!
Maybe it was the innocence and lack of momentum that made me believe that this monument, one of most famous monuments in the Champs-Élysées and in all of Paris became my most favourite part of the entire city.
Since we had a normal picture with the Eiffel Tower, here’s a more accurate shot of our friendship in front of the Arc de Triomphe. The weirdo, the always loading and the blasé one. Est 2011!!!
Here’s a rainy shot of the Notre-Dame de Paris. I was expecting to see Quasimodo talking to his gargoyle friends while Esmeralda does a magic trick to entertain tourists around. But I did get to see a homeless man with two canine friends who both wore little berets while sitting on a mat, probably in hopes of luring tourists to take pictures in exchange for money.
I have to be honest, getting lost in Minérales do brasil was my preferred way of buying souvenirs from Paris, one of the few crystal shops I managed to track down in Paris. Apparently there was one inside the Louvre but because we didn’t go inside we never got the chance to see it. Turns out, after researching, the store was on the upper side of the price scale and we probably wouldn’t have eaten anything if we bought anything there!
After letting yourself in the huge gold door, you’ll find yourself in a very secluded area, which felt like a small estate area, with an open garage where a monsieur was washing his car. There were perfectly trimmed flowers and symmetrically placed windows everywhere.
Walk deeper inside, past the tunnel and to your left is the entrance to the crystal shop. It may be a small shop, but don’t let this get to you. The shop is FULL of crystals, with clusters upon clusters of amethyst the stone of their particular preference. As I always do in crystal shops, the energy gets me so high and fizzy I forget to take pictures. But here’s a shot of the ones I did get.
Malachite Lion and Cat carving, a Celestite tumbled (because Parisian vibes are that exact shade of blue), Green Garnet tumbled, a Zebra Jasper that looks like an actual zebra’s head, a Chrysocolla tumbled and a black tumbled stone whose name I sadly cannot remember. I might need to study more on that.
Paris never really gives you the impression that it’s a busy, cash cow city that makes you feel like you need to rush around and make sure you don’t miss your train. It’s very obvious this is where bohemianism first really originated, where you can find literary, musical, theatrical and artistic enlightenment and herds upon herds of gypsies roam the city with new techniques of scamming people under the backdrop of such famous names like the Arc de Triomphe, the Mussee du Louvre and of course, the Eiffel Tower.
All in all, Paris left me with inspiration and, most of all, love.
Shout outs to birthday girl Val for taking us to the Catacombs and all the Uber libre and to Kristine for always pointing out all of our faults because you’re so perfect and for making this all happen; you are the Bruce Wayne of this KUC Trinity! Love to my Gemini quadruplets!
I’ve got a new poem published out!
It’s somehow kismet how this entire thing turned out.
I had met Filipino singer-songwriter June Marieezy this time last year during her London debut performance in Hackney and was, to be quite frank, changed by our short but sweet interaction. One of them involved me writing a poem based on that and everything else that I’ve learnt from it, resulting in it coming out through the 32nd issue of Cha: An Asian Literary Journal.
“Soul Child” is part of the Distance section of the issue, which is in collaboration with Health in Action, a Hong Kong charity that promotes community health and wellbeing through the empowerment of the underprivileged. The publication of this special section will coincide with Health in Action’s Refugee Week Art Movement (week of 20 June 2016) to raise awareness for asylum seekers and refugees in Hong Kong. (20 June 2016 is World Refugee Day.)
Funny how this poem was also published in June, the month which a lot of people on Twitter refer to as June’s month.
“Soul Child” by Troy Cabida
I hope you all enjoy reading my poem (alongside the rest of the beautifully crafted issue) as much as I enjoyed writing and living it.
Shout outs to the team of Cha: Tammy Ho Lai-Ming, Reid Mitchell, BBP Hosmillo, Mag Tan and Eddie Tay. And shout outs to all my fellow contributors; I’m stoked to be a part of an issue which features a lot of fellow Filipino literary artists!!!