The second law of thermodynamics states that the entropy of an isolated system does not decrease. This is often misinterpreted and used incorrectly for a bunch of analogies about life and whatnot. This is probably yet another one. That’s unfortunate since I’m supposed to be well-versed in the basic understandings of heat conservation by now because one of my main projects for work is on renewable energy. As always, a jack of all trades and a master of none. Anyhoo, this got me thinking about my own energy supply these days. Humans don’t have an endless amount of energy and everyone has their limit. But how do we replenish? How do we keep nurturing and conditioning our inner strength to make it through every new day?
I’m about halfway through my time in Paris this summer and even though I’m physically exhausted most days, I’m at peace and proud of my accomplishments so far. I think that’s the important key – giving yourself time to reflect on all the great things that you’ve achieved and experienced recently. Telling myself “You know what, you’re a pretty awesome person. Good job!” Modesty is an important characteristic to have these days, but it shouldn’t replace a healthy dose of self confidence. It’s not selfish to focus on yourself to make yourself a better, happier person. And so, here’s a list of some of the things that I’m glad to have experienced in Paris. Sorry for the comparatively sparse amount of pictures, I feel too self conscious snapping pictures when hanging out with the cool Europeans that don’t have time for that shit.
1. The museums here are a dream. Large, massive, mini-cities like the Louvre, to small three-story artists’ apartment/studio like the Musee Gustave Moreau.
2. Having lunch in the shade of the Eiffel tower at least once a week. Having 4pm coffee/Nesquik milk breaks with my intern “bestie” in the office bar that also overlooks the Tour Eiffel. Still not desensitized to this view.
3. Finally, finally, finally figuring out the Paris metro – even during summer reconstruction that forced me to change my route to work three times. The world will never know how many selfies I took either bored, angry, or hopelessly confused in the metro.
4. Happy tipsy drinking with friends and colleagues. I was wrong – you can get drunk off wine.
5. The exotic yummy souvenir table right outside my office. I don’t need to travel if people just bring back all the food to my doorstep. Let’s be honest, that’s all I would’ve been doing anyway. (Pictured: Czech wafers with hazelnut cream filling)
6. Sundays when I lie in my bed and see how long I can go without moving. Also known as…
7. That time we drove to Gent for a beer festival and I dropped my glasses in the river. But I ain’t even mad. At least I’ll have made my mark in some way since no photos of me in Gent exist… was it all just a dream?
8. I witnessed the Bastille Day fireworks. Alone yet warmed by the company of all the people. And their sweat.
9. Challenging and fulfilling assignments at work. This one’s a big one for which I am especially thankful. Also for the office espresso machine. Also for the hilarious and interesting people with whom I have the privilege to work. Just, god bless this internship…
10. Losing weight and exercising without trying. This picture was taken the first weekend in Paris. Since then I’ve lost most of the excess flab I’d gained during Spring finals week. Confusing Metro closings definitely force you to walk a few extra miles…
tl;dr – Positive vibes, chill feelings, yet still in awe like a doe-eyed college student. That is my current status update.