Since It’s my first Blog post I would like to remember an old memory, one of my earliest
experiences in traveling, one that taught me a lot and added to my passion for traveling.
It was the Summer of 2008 and I was only 10 years old, I can recall it was my first time to travel abroad, it was a family trip to Paris. On one evening we finished our day and were heading home, we arrived to La Defense and were supposed to take a bus to our apartment in Puteaux. We were four; my mother, grandfather, father and me. The former two took the bus and we were supposed to exchange some money and follow them on the next bus. However we found the exchange office closed and my father suggested to walk the way home, it wasn’t a big distance after all. My father bought us a map and some snacks to consume on our way. It was my first time to hold a street map and understand how to use it, my father took me bit by bit through it. He told me that I first have to point my location on the map, then my destination and follow it. We easily located ourselves, as we were in a famous landmark, then we started searching for Avenue Georges Pompidou were we lived, we found it as well and started following the map till we reached the street. But we found ourselves in a place we haven’t seen before, we checked the signs again and again and it all said “Avenue Georges Pompidou”. Dad are we lost? No that’s our street and we followed the directions correctly. You can add to this that my father’s mobile battery was dead and the sky started to dim. I remember I cried on that day, in my childish head we were lost and you have to cry when you can’t find your way home. So we started searching the surrounding streets looking for our apartment still not acknowledging that it’s nowhere here. At last we decided to take a taxi, we asked him to take us to Georges Pompidou street and that was the only information we knew about our apartment, but he told us in a sarcastic tone: you are in Georges Pompidou avenue. So he took us back to La Defense, where we were lucky to find that the last bus didn’t leave yet. While we waited I inspected the map indicating the bus route and found out that it went to another Avenue Georges Pompidou in absolutely the opposite direction from the way we walked. We walked North-east while our Georges Pompidou lied in the South. We arrived Putauex at last to find my mother waiting for us at the bus terminal, furious at us for making her worry. I remember she didn’t even greet us, just walked in front of us towards the apartment. By the way I learned later that there was a third Georges Pompidou avenue. Oh please Paris don’t give three streets the same name again, you have a lot of other options to choose from.
They say “you have to get lost before you find yourself” and that applied to me I had to get lost to find how much I love to travel. I owe that day a lot, although I was lost but I really enjoyed it. If I had to remember one thing about Paris for he rest of my life it’s definitely Monsieur Georges Pompidou.