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. Paris quickly became my soul mate as I strolled the streets and breathed in the air, ate amazing food, drank delicious wine, shopped in expensive boutiques.

Last fall I took a trip of a lifetime with my mother.  We did a mother-daughter trip to Paris and then headed over to London.  When I was in college, I spent a semester abroad in London and fell in love with the culture, the people, the pomp and circumstance, and the beer (I returned with a bit of a beer gut).  And London was one of my favorite spots overseas.  But that was until I went to Paris last year.  First of all, can we get a moment of silence for the European men?  They are just so damn sexy and manly.  They are romantic and they can dress their asses off.  Paris quickly became my soul mate as I strolled the streets and breathed in the air, ate amazing food, drank delicious wine, shopped in expensive boutiques.  My French even improved after a while.  I know they had me when I said, “D’accord” without even thinking about it.  I realized I must have been Parisian in another life.  The moment I left, my spirit longed to return.  Oh… Paris… How I miss thee!!!

Fast forward to present time, last week my girlfriend and I decided to switch things up.  It was the NBA finals and we knew every man in LA was going to be at some sports bar catching the game.  So we figured we might as well switch things up a bit and head over to Mad Bull’s Tavern in the valley.  We knew it was going to be packed but we didn’t realize it was going to be an Oasis of men!  It was great.  What I discovered is men are in a different start of mind when they are in a sports bar watching a game.  They are extremely laid back and relaxed.  They are in their element.  They get to enjoy two things they like beer and food.  So their guards are down.  As a woman walking into their environment the key is to adjust.  Ladies, please don’t walk into a sports bar with a pair of heels on and a dress that’s called PRESSED!  My girlfriend and I were able to get a table.  I ordered a glass of wine (yes I had wine in a sports bar) and some wings and let the festivities begin.  I decided to root for the Spurs.  I could have given two shits about who won or lost the game but rooting for the team that most of the folks in the bar were rooting against made for some great conversation starters and an easy way to flirt.

Guy at Bar:  You’re rooting for the wrong team!  What’s up with that?

Me:  I like to root for the under dogs.  Besides I’m over Lebron and Chris Posh’s game has been off all season. (Mind you I had no fucking clue what I was talking about.  The only reason I know anything about Chris ugly ass Posh is simply from reading the gossip blogs about his ongoing custody battle with his baby momma and the fact that his former video vixen wife is pregnant again… I’m a mess!  But I did sound convincing)

Guy at Bar:  I ain’t mad at you!

As the night went on there was a feeling of comradery among the bar patrons.  Everyone was having a good time and there was a great energy.  At one point during the game I notice a guy across the room giving me the eye.  SO I gave him my mega million dollar smile (if you can’t flatter yourself, who else will) and he smiled back.  Okay… I liked this scene.  By the end of the evening he had made his way over to my table.  The second “Pierre” opened his mouth I knew he was French!  Oui! Oui! Oui!  My inner diva did cartwheels.

Pierre:  Did you enjoy the game?

Me:  It was a good game.

Pierre:  What’s your name?

Me:  Monique.

Pierre:  Monique.  French name huh?

At that moment I wanted to send my mother a text message thanking her for naming me a French name.  The sound of my name in a French accent was just right on time.  But I first had to confirm he was indeed from France.  No offense, but I’m not interested in dating Prince Akeem from coming to America!  (don’t judge my ignorance)

Me:  Where are you from? 

Pierre:  France. 

Me:  That’s what I figured.  Paris is one of my favorite places.

So with that we continued our conversation about Paris and how I want to brush up on my French and we exchanged numbers.  The next day “Pierre” asked me out on a date for that weekend.  He picked a great location too.  A new spot called The Village in Studio City.  When it was time to order our drinks he ordered a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc.  I could hear him say Sauvignon Blanc over and over again.  “Pierre” was a 37 year old engineer.  He was divorced and had no kids.   He moved to LA from France 10 years ago.  He talked about how when he first got to the states he hung out with mostly all French people but realized he needed to become fluent in English so he started hanging out with Americans.   He was truly a genuinely nice guy.  It was refreshing to be out with a man who was well traveled, smart, and knew all about my favorite city in the world.  At one point the waiter came up to our table and asked him if he was from France.  Ironically the waiter was French too and they started speaking in French.  Now here’s the deal.  I can appreciate when people speak in another language and have enough sense to translate for me.  That way you don’t feel like a complete outsider.  This was definitely a good first date in my book.  It has been a while since I have went out with someone that I actually liked and who knew how to court a woman.

The next few days went by we spoke over the phone and we also texted.  Our next date he invited me to this party at Sur Lounge.  It’s called French Tuesdays.  I had a work event to go to earlier that evening but I decided to live a little and meet him afterwards.  When I got to Sur Lounge he was waiting outside for me.  Like I said earlier, European men have a style to them that American men just haven’t mastered.  He was wearing a beautifully tailored blazer and jeans.  His face lit up when he saw me… I liked that!  When we walked into Sur Lounge I was literally transformed into another world.  There was lounge music playing and the place was packed.  No one in there was speaking English.  I literally felt like I had taken a flight to Paris.  It was great.  We ordered champagne.  He introduced me to his friends.  I attempted to speak a little bit of the French I knew and butchered it.  But the great thing was he helped me out.  I have lived in LA and never experienced this type of scene.  It was glamorous, sexy, and very European.  I really had a great time and it was unexpected.

Paris_cafe

I think what draws me to Parisians is they live life to the fullest. They drink their wine without worrying about if they are drinking too much, they eat their pastries without the concern for calories, and they show affection without thinking about what people think.

Seriously I am really beginning to enjoy my singledom.  This was truly an IHOP experience (International House of Possibilities).  I’m learning to stop limiting myself.  I’m not going to put so many damn parameters around this dating thing.  I think what draws me to Parisians is they live life to the fullest.  They drink their wine without worrying about if they are drinking too much, they eat their pastries without the concern for calories, and they show affection without thinking about what people think.  Perhaps if I began to live my life like I am the inner Parisian woman that I see myself as I will learn how to let go and embrace these various possibilities.  I have no idea what the future holds with me and “Pierre” and I am not thinking about it either.  I am just going to live and enjoy myself as if I were in Paris.  Laissez bon temps rollez!  Au Reviour!

 

 

 

Monique K.Bradley

 

 

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