Another full day of taking in the sites, this time, I decided to take advantage of the metro, today being a cooler day. I was a little rusty, but I managed my way around, just like a pro, well… sort of. Where should I go? With so many options, I chose “eeny meeny miny moe,” my finger landing on the 11th arrondissement of my map.
I’m trying not to pack too much into my days, which is easier said than done. So off to the 11th, I meandered around Place de Voges, one of the oldest squares in Paris. It’s a little off the beaten path, quieter here, sprinkled with more cafes, boutique hotels and art galleries. I found a cool spot to sit, map in hand. Where to explore next?
Nearby is Pere Lachaise Cemetery, and it would be wrong to think of this site as another tourist attraction. This is the land of the dead, or rather death, and if you’ve guessed already, this is the largest cemetery in Paris. Not for the faint of heart, but trust me, it’s not something I would do regularly. Nevertheless, something is appealing or curious about walking amongst the famous literary greats, composers and entertainers, Oscar Wilde, Marcel Proust, Chopin, Edith Piaf and Jim Morrison, to name a few.
It was interesting to cross paths with fellow tourists, with different reasons for their visit and yet a common realization of one’s mortality. A little morbid, I guess, but after spending an afternoon around “dead” people, you realize just how precious your days are and, hopefully, make some impact one way or another. My takeaway? Live in the moment, put the cell phones away (an occasional selfie permitted) don’t sweat the small stuff because, at the end of the day, none of us are getting out alive.