France Through a Daughter’s Eyes

God seems to have a way of slowing me down when I can’t or won’t do it for myself. I returned from Paris a week ago and haven’t written a word or a story or a blog. So on Saturday He broke a water glass and let it fall directly on top of my right foot: not the left, oh, no! The one I drive with, lead with, count on. Six stitches in Urgent Care. So here I sit with my foot elevated, iced, swollen and throbbing. Nothing else to do BUT write! I know you’ve experienced the same type of wake-up call.
The Bible says that God spoke to people back then. Maybe there are simply too many of us these days for those direct conversations. We have over- populated our planet, after all. The stabbing pain in my foot reminds me that He’s still in control and speaks to me none-the-less.
 Seeing Paristhrough the eyes of a daughter is fantastic. Watching her eyes sparkle as the Eiffel began its hourly sparkle was such fun! Reaching the top of the Arc de Triomphe right behind her made all the huffing and puffing and heart-racing breathlessness worth every step (284 to be exact). Years ago Michelle and I went to the Monet exhibit at the Phoenix Art Museum, and she bought a poster of his famous lily pond below the bridge at Giverny. As we stood on that very bridge with the water reflecting the willow trees and blue sky, and the gorgeous flower-lined path around the pond, we both felt the intensity of sitting where Monet sat, easel in front of him painting his glorious pastel colors on canvas.
Without realizing it, I took a photo of her taking a photo of Notre Dame through the pink blossomed cherry trees, as she gazed in amazement at the flying buttresses of the cathedral. Last year I stood in that very place with my son, so she and I crossed the street to have a Nutella crepe at the same outdoor creperie where Mike and I ate last year. Traveling with friends and spouses is exciting and fun, but going with adult children has a very special feeling.
When my children were little, I saw everything through the eyes of a child: their first circus, first ballet, first trip to Disneyland. Thirty eight years later, Europe was our Disneyland, and that feeling of experiencing it through them felt much the same.
After my daughter flew back to the states, I went to Avignonfor a few days. I was drenched in the history, dripping from the 1300’s palace, bridges, and walls surrounding the ancient city. It was amazing and I relished it, and at the same time, I missed sharing it with her and missed seeing it twice – through my own eyes and through hers.

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