PDA Isn’t Really Paris’s Thing, But . . .

Dec 26, 2014 by

          Paris holds a reputation as the City of Love, but I’m not sure why. It’s pretty and it speaks French – the so-called language of love (despite being far less enticing than Italian or Spanish) – but its people aren’t noticeably romantic. They aren’t flaunting affection in the streets. I was specifically looking for PDA, and I didn’t notice any more kissing or handholding than I normally would at home in Toronto, a city that I recently read has a reputation for being particularly un-flirtatious. #singlebecause

          However, while walking down Rue Saint-Antoine one night nearing the end of my time in Paris, I stopped to watch a girl running up the steps of Saint-Paul metro station. She was racing through people with such excitement that she peaked my curiosity. People typically walk Paris with intent, but this girl was hell-bent. Within seconds, I could see why. A guy smiling as brightly as her stood in her path. He was at least a foot taller than she was, but she jumped him with such force that I thought she was going to knock him over. With her arms wrapped around his neck and her legs tightly wound around his waist, he spun her on the spot before she kissed him like she hadn’t seen him in years. As I watched them, my mind was making up some story about how they were reunited after being long separated by expired visas. (I was in Europe. I romantically imagined such stories happened all the time.)

          When they walked off, holding hands and stopping every few steps to kiss again, I considered a more charming storyline: They hadn’t been apart for years. They had been dating for years, and they just saw each other yesterday. They always greet each other that way, because the honeymoon phase never wore off. They’re one of those rare couples that continuously love each other that much. Yes, that’s their story, I decided, smiling to myself at the thought. They are always that stunning together.

          I meant to share that moment with you months ago, but I guess life distracted me. Today, though, I found out that one of my dad’s cousins lost her husband. Aside from death always being sad and death during the holidays being especially sad, this one pulled at my heart because my dad’s cousin loved her husband. I know that sounds like a given because they were married, but it’s not. Not all married couples exhibit love. But she and her husband did. After over 20 years of marriage, they still went for walks. They still held hands. They still told the story of how they met. In light of her loss, I decided this story couldn’t wait any longer.

          Obvious love like what I saw between that couple in Paris is rare and alluring and fleeting. I aspire to it. I expect nothing less than a guy I want to publically wrap my legs around long into our relationship. I’m often told that my expectations are too high, but I don’t think so. I think intense and ongoing passion is a baseline relationship requirement, not a bonus. I think it’s sad that most people think expecting it is picky. That doesn’t speak very highly of most relationships. So, if you are passionately in love with a person, if you have what that breathtaking couple in Paris has, know that you have something worth stopping for.

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