La Belle Vie à Paris Paris is a lifestyle

My name is Louliana Voelker.

I live in Larchmont, New York with my mom and dad.

I am about to be fourteen.

I own a very old piece of furniture that has been with me since I was a baby, though it is true it does not serve me a purpose anymore.

I used to be short, but now I am tall.

I used to let everything go, but now I can’t get it out of my head.

I used to ignore different ideas, but now I am lost in one thought.

It is true I don’t like traveling in planes.

It is true I love to visit different places.

I like a nice fresh fall day. You know the one? Where the temperature is not too warm, but not frosty cold. Fall is a season to wear what you want. Although it depending on the day, your ides of the ideal outfit could change.

Fall.

You could say it’s only a season, but I think it’s much more.

My story starts before high school. June of the summer I was thirteen, I found out my parents and I weren’t going to visit our family in Europe.

Paris is the city I was born in, the city I go to every summer, well almost. Back then, we lived in Paris. Although when I was five, we had to move to New York for my father’s work. I didn’t realize it then, but it was a terrible decision. Paris is like Disney World to me. Every street you go is like a different ride. Every arrondissement is like a new world. Don’t get me wrong I would be crestfallen to leave my friends, school, house, neighborhood, and Manhattan. My heart is definitely in Paris, but my head knows I should be here.

Little Flower

My name is Louliana. It means little flower in Albanian although family is not from Albany. I am not named after a family member. My parents made up my name. It was only after they named me that they found out what it meant. This is how the story goes...

I was born in Paris. My parents lived in Paris before I was born. The time came that they started looking for a name fore me. Everyone in our family knew they were trying to come up with a great name. One day my grandmother was reading a book and one of the characters in the book was princess Loulie. She told my mother how she loved that name. She knew my parents were looking for a name for me. So they talked about it and added Ana to it. This was how my name came to be... Louliana.

My name sounds soft and hard depending on how people say it. I don't think I would change my name because I don't know what I would change it to. Although if I was given a different name I wouldn't mind. As long as I liked the name and it was a good name for me. Though my name makes me sound special and not like everyone else. I feel like I stand out to other people. Also, I always get compliment for my name. My name is also annoying. People don't read it correctly. People don't pronounce it correctly. Sometimes they also hear it wrong, they think I am saying a different name like Juliana or Liliana.

Food and Conversation

I was 13. In my house. At the dining table. Having dinner with my parents. Everynight we have dinner together is my dad doesn't come home late from work. We started by talking about our days. Then the conversation completely switched gears.

My parents knew I had a problem with my friend. It was hard for me to figure out what to do in the situation I was in. So we talked about the problem I was facing. My mom and dad helped me. They gave me good advice. I learned to not let people have power over me and the only person who can put me down is myself.

My older self woke up the next day and saw the world at school in a total different way. This has still helped me from that day on. Giving the advice that I learned to other friends when they are in a hard situation and need their power back.

Alone in the Middle of the Gigantic Ocean

I was 6 or 7 or maybe even 8 years old in my old house. I called that house the haunted house because it was old, had a lot of spider webs, and seemed as big as a castle compared to my tiny self. I am an only child so I had to make my own fun most of the time. It's not as bad I took on hobbies like drawing or walking around the house trying not to get lost. Every weekend was just like all the others, nothing special. I did the same things every week. However that Sunday, it has stayed with me ever since, the day I stayed home alone. My dad was at work in Manhattan so he wasn't home. For my mom, she ordered Chinese food and needed to go pick it up. The place she ordered from was very close to home. She told me that she would leave me alone in the house for a couple minutes. It took more time waiting for the food than actually bringing it home. When she left I got a really scared feeling because it was the first time my mom ever left me home alone. I felt like I was alone, on a boat, in the middle of the ocean, with no sight of life or land. I didn't know quite what to do. I just acted like there was one of my parents at home and went along with my normal day. I would usually go to my desk and make little creations or draw. As the clock ticked, the longer she was away it felt like hours passed by. However she was only gone for about 10 minutes. When she got home, I was so exited that I stayed home alone for the first time. I felt like I was hiking a mountains for weeks and I finally made it to the top and the view is breathtaking. It made me feel like I was growing up and that I was more responsible. I was also really happy because we were having Chinese food for dinner which doesn't happen often.

Cherry Blossom

Paris,

A cherry blossom that blooms every year,

Never looking identical as the first time it opened.

Despite the frost through the night,

The cherry blossom thrives all throughout the night.

Paris,

A beautiful city with many aesthetics.

Where the Eiffel Tower glimmers,

Like a lighthouse in the middle of the pacific ocean.

Protecting its precious city,

Trying to keep out the negativity,

Hiding in the darkness of the night.

Paris,

A place sacred place.

Where people always return,

To obtain what they seek.

A place I call home.

The Old Haunted Mansion

I am from a tv show family.

From the city of love and the city of lights.

I am from the old haunted mansion and the desk by the window.

I am from meeting a new relative on a beach.

From the glimmers of the Eiffel Tower and people who care about people.

I am from Christmas markets and food market under the metro tracks.

I am from the week starting with Monday.

From tea every morning and staying home on Sundays.

I am from a world famous home for food and a place I only get to visit every two years.

Les Champs-Elysées

Aux Champs-Elysées, aux Champs-Elysées

Au soleil, sous la pluie, à midi ou à minuit

Il y a tout ce que vous voulez aux Champs-Elysées

At the Champs-Elysées, at the Champs-Elysées

In the sun, under the rain, at noon or at midnight

There is everything you want at the Champs-Elysées

En los Champs-Elysées, en los Champs-Elysées

En el sol, en la lluvia, a mediodía o a medianoche

Hay todos que usted quiere en los Champs-Elysées

Note To Self :

Author’s Note-

These pieces cannot explain completely who I am, although they do show a glimpse of me. They captures the special and remembered portions of my life that somehow must have been important somehow because here I am writing about them today. It might be obvious that Paris is a precious place to me, however I make it seem that its definition is much more than just a city. In fact, not all my writings are about Paris. They are about those moments in life that are kept in my shadow. Things that play a special part in who I am. Things I might not have figured out yet. Things that really mean a lot to me.

Related to each other through me, all these pieces share a common factor. They share the experiences in my life which play a role in who I am. My heritage is also a factor that ties all these writings together. Though being french is a shade of me that most people always go by, it isn't necessarily all there is to me. Therefore, these pieces show how someone’s cultural background ties in with the rest of them.

These writings helped me understand that even though Paris is all I hope for, it is not completely who I am. I was influenced by much more and I am glad that I have that one thing that can always connect me back deep down inside me, Paris. My life was mostly experienced here. I am engaged in thinking that the world around me is as it is for a reason. Perhaps that reason hasn’t occurred to me yet. Though I know there is much more to anyone or me than just a culture. It is what you make out of that culture and if you want to live your life with this one structure holding you. Or if you want to find out what else there really is to you than where you come from.

Credits:

Created with images by 27707 - "eiffel tower france sunset" • A_Peach - "Little kiss of sun" • kaboompics - "wooden table interior" • The Wolf - "Small boat on Wadden Sea" • dalbera - "Paris vu depuis la terrasse de l'Arc de Triomphe" • cromaconceptovisual - "address book notebook book"

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