What living in Paris is really like

Sunday, 3 September 2017

What living in Paris is really like

I feel like so many people see Paris as a dream city: a romantic place where everyone sits in cafés sipping coffee, shops all day long and finishes their days drinking wine with a view on the Seine. I mean, I get it. Paris is pretty. It sure can lure you in with its Hausmann buildings, its narrow streets and the many historical sites and museums that just scream city of art.
But as always, being a tourist and actually living in a place doesn't have the first thing in common. There are tons of guides and articles and what not about the toursity side of Paris. I also did a post about my favourite non-touristy spots here. But that's not what I want to talk about. I'm going to let you in on some less pretty details of living here. Not that it's all negative - it's not. There are tons of reasons to love living here, and this article shouldn't be taken too seriously anyway. 😉

What living in Paris is really like

Let's start with space. It's very simple: there is none. 

You wake up in a bed that's almost too small for two, because nothing bigger would fit into your tiny bedroom. You get up and walk two steps to the bathroom - but beware of trying to walk inside the bathroom, you might get stuck.
If you want to eat breakfast with your significant other, you have to make a choice: you or him. No way both of you are going to find enough room in the kitchen.
And don't even get me started on storage. And don't open that door to the storage room, you might get hit on your head with an ironing board.

You want to know where I spend at least two hours a day, every day? Public transportation. 

It's pretty cosy. You never get cold. In fact, most of the time you're actually really hot. Because there's like a million people right next to you. Don't even think about moving, there is no way. At least you can't fall, there's no room for a horizontal person. Oh, and did you hear about air conditioning? Parisian trains did not. Summer here is not a walk in the park.

What living in Paris is really like

Let's discuss something nice: Food. 

There is loads of it, everywhere. In fact, Parisians (and French people in general) spend a lot of time talking about food. Discussing new restaurants, bars, cafes. You can try tons of things, and there are so many places to order from. No wonder everyone takes at least one hour off for their lunch break (and then sits at work until 7 pm). But if you're a simple girl at heart and all you crave is potatoes (not fries) or a simple rice meal? Well, you'll have to cook it yourself. Or eat Japanese every day, which is basically my take on the situation. At least restaurants are open pretty late. It's especially important since there is no 24-hour-McDonald's around (even my hometown in Germany has one, duh). Generally though, Paris has almost everything your heart desires. Well, actually that would be your stomach.

Grocery shopping can be so frustrating.

Because it's so hard to find avocados that aren't as hard as a brick. Fruit that isn't rotten. Vegetables that don't cost an arm and a leg. Supermakets in the city are tiny and don't have half of what I want, and driving to larger supermarkets on the outskirts can be a hustle. Which brings me to my next point:

What living in Paris is really like

Having a car in Paris can drive you crazy.

I won't even mention how scared I am of driving here. The streets are so narrow and people are crazy. But even if you're a better driver and you're okay with that, you still have to park at some point. And that's where the struggle begins. Finding a parking space for your car can take up to an hour, and even more if you don't want to pay for it. And once you've found one, chances are you'll have to take the bus to get back home.

So, are you ready to move here yet?

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