My anxiety is my achilles heel.
Paris has been nothing but gorgeous to me and yet the past few days I have felt on the verge of a massive break down.
A few days have passed so I’ll take this blog to vent out all the shit things that have happened so I can focus subsequent blogs on the awesome things.
I am a terribly disorganized person. And the person who suffers for this deficiency is usually me.
When booking my Europe train pass, my friend Bec (also my travel agent) told me that I should check the details for traveling between Paris and Vienna, because it may be better to fly.
I didn’t bother to check this until I was in Paris. Because I’m super bright.
It was going to be a 12hr train ride with two changes and a seat reservation fee of 50€. (Blerg.)
I quickly decided that I would fly instead, but all the flights I found were priced around 350€. (Bigger blerg.)
I finally found a flight, via Warsaw, at 200€. Yes, 200€ is a lot of money. But I saw it as just punishment for my leaving this task to the lat second.
When I tried to book it, the payment went through but the webpage refused to return to the confirmation screen. (Fuck.)
I spent a quarter of my phone credit trying to call the company to confirm whether or not a ticket was purchased. The kind lady on the other end told me that the purchase was incomplete and that I’d have to go through the whole process again. (Double fuck.)
When I tried to book the ticket again, the purchas WAS completed. HOWEVER, in big red letters on my confirmation was a message explaining that something has gone wrong with the payment and the ticket would be taken away if this could not be rectified. (Oh my god whyeee?!)
So, after all of this, my credit card had been charged €400 for a flight that I may not actually have a ticket for. My heart was arythmic, my mind was scattered and racing. I felt like I was going to be sick.
I called my Muma, to hear her voice and seeking a little sympathy. However, life on her end was just as hectic, so the call was less comforting than hoped. (Don’t worry Muma, I still love you madly.)
I spent most of the day trying not to be sick. I eventually received an email confirming the flight and the payment, but it was less of a remedy than hoped.
I woke, from very restless sleep, with an anxiety hangover. I was still jittering from the previous days ridiculousness.
I decided to channel my restless energy into an early morning trip to the Louvre.
The anxiety made my travel to the Louvre incredibly frightening. I had become so paranoid. Everyone was definitely going to mug me and eat me. But thank god for my phone and my music collection. Music keeps me calm
About 5 minutes after beginning my wander through the Louvre I found a sign saying that one of the main attractions was actually at the NGV in Melbourne. (Sneaky Melbourne.) I thought this was hysterical, so I went to take a photo of the sign with my phone.
When I pulled my phone out of my bag I noticed that it had been turned off. I hadn’t turned it off!(?) I tried to turn it on, and nothing happened.
With the already high levels of anxiety coursing through me, this last straw almost brought me to my knees. In an unconscious moment of self preservation, I SHOVED the phone back into my bag and pretended that the whole interaction had never occurred.
I wandered like a zombie through the galleries for a few hours and thank god for the beauty that surrounded me. I stopped for lunch, tried the phone again with no luck and found myself on the verge of tears.
I ran to the gift shop. I felt that if I could find a piece of paper and a pen I could write out a plan of action and everything would seem a little less desperate.
Thankfully, this strategy worked quite well and I managed to calm down enough to stay at the louvre a little longer.
In the afternoon, I found myself wandering through the shopping complex attached to the Louvre. Suddenly, almost miraculously, I spied a glowing apple.
Seriously, why the hell is there a massive Mac store inside the Louvre?! Well, what ever the reason, I actually cried out with joy when I found it.
Tears welling in my eyes I babbled the details of my poor dead phone to the first shop assistant I could find. She sent me to the Geniuses.
The Geniuses wouldn’t have an appointment till Wednesday, but the sweet guy who was trying to help me took pity on me and managed to squeeze me in immediately.
€150 and my phone was completely replaced. This meant that I would have a working phone for the rest of my trip, which is an incredibly important security for a very anxious girl traveling alone. But I lost all of my music and photos and apps.
I am incredibly grateful that both of these issues have been resolved. I am also incredibly grateful for the fact that I have had fabulous luck on my travels until recently. But most of all, I am grateful that these shitty things have happened in Paris. The city is too beautiful to stay wrapped up in your own nonsense for too long.
But fuck me.
I’m exhausted, down 350€ and still pretty anxious.
Hope you’re all a thousand times better than I.
I promise that the next blog will be happier. Xx
Pictured – An illuminated Louvre for your trouble. Xx