i think back to the many disneyland trips in my early years of life and many fond memories are conjured up in my mind. but there is one in particular that i have been reminded of especially while i am here. i learned something from my dad in these early trips. my dad walks fast. not because he is impatient, or because he needs to get somewhere particularly fast. he just likes to get where he is going, and does it a little bit faster than the rest of the world. and so, while at disneyland we naturally had to keep up. we dodged strollers and children on leashes and did more rides in a day than anyone else. thanks to him, i have a similar habit. i walk fast. it is not something i notice, although countless people have commented about it. (mindy, mallory....). its just a part of who i am. i walk fast.
and then i am flung into this brand new culture where everything is so different. the eating habits. the methods of transportation. the language. the style. the time. the people. almost everything has changed. luckily, thanks to my dad, i've had one little thing that i've managed to cling to. one aspect of this crazy culture that i understood without even trying. french people walk fast. the french walk with purpose. there is always another train to catch, another place to be. and i didn't even notice. it hit me when a group of girls from the london study abroad program met up with us here and we took them around the city. as we walked around they seriously struggled to keep up. we had to hop off one train to wait for the next because some of their group was lagging. its just a faster pace here, and thanks to my dad, it didn't even phase me.
those same disneyland trips i'm sure had many individual experiences that were funny or special, i can think of one in particular where i ended up soaking wet thanks to my dad and a large fountain, but most of what i remember is that these trips were fun. they were fun because my mom knows how to have fun. it is a part of her. its not that she is totally crazy and has to try to get people to have a good time, it just happens naturally. she turns dish washing into towel dancing to the aida soundtrack. she turns cutting paper snowflakes into an art. she is fun. and that characteristic has become ingrained in me. hand either of us any situation, rain or shine, and we can turn it into something fun. that ability has done me a lot of good. a six hour car ride with plenty of getting lost becomes a six hour boondoggle and map quest adventure with even more getting found. a strenuous, borderline boring walk for paris walks class becomes a phototaking spree. luckily here i am blessed to have people around me who are ready and willing to have fun and who have a plethora of grand ideas for us to take hold of and run with. but i'd like to thank my mom for teaching me how to have fun. when i am thrown into a brand new culture where everything is different, i know no matter what, i can make it fun and have a quality time. (even if my dinner still has eyeballs)
so there is my shout out to my speedy dad and my super fun mama (who have taught me countless great, great things). today i am especially grateful for my fun filled, fast walking memories of days gone by. thank you.
and now, since i took 1,200 pictures this weekend (a characteristic that is all my own - i take too many pictures, always), here are a few more 'artistic shots' from the trip.
okay, we'll start off with an awkward close up.
cathedral number 755.
just as good as the first.
(these especially thin bricks are attributed to the romans. they made them to layer throughout their buildings for extra support. i quite like them.)