I was 30 the first time I saw Paris, and I vowed to return there to live when I was 35, an age I considered to be at the peak of young, grownup and stylish. "Yes, I'm going to come back here to live," I told my friend Jo Lowrey that day at the Palace of Versailles, envisioning a romantic life of style, culture and worldly men.
Jo and I had been college roommates, and here we were a dozen years later, still the best of friends. Jo was already living in Paris, having married a sexy Frenchman a couple of years before. Still single, I came for a visit, fell in love with a city and dreamed of returning.
See also: Indulge in the City of Light
It took another 30 years for me to get back to Paris, but I still believed in stylish dreams, even in the face of real-life endings. The year before, I had mourned the loss of my mother, a former boyfriend and a close girlfriend. Life is fleeting, fragile, I realized, with the sobering thud that death always brings. Why not go for the dream while the going is good?