Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Wednesday in Paris

Things continue to go fairly well in Paris. I've enjoyed being here, and I've especially liked meeting the students who are attending the school here. I wandered around the city a little bit yesterday and I remembered what a beautiful place Paris is. There are neat buildings everywhere, small streets, cafes and boulangeries, and it is almost serene compared to Beijing. Quite likely this is because half of Paris leaves the city in August. The city feels semi-deserted at times.

Nevertheless, I found myself feeling a little unsettled yesterday evening and this morning. All the travel I've done the last week is taking its toll. Jetlag (or just ordinary exhaustion) set in last night around 10:30, and I crashed pretty hard. I slept for a while, but I'm not sure it was great quality sleep. Toward morning I had some weird dreams. I only remember little snippets from them, but they were kinda odd and so I woke up in a strange mood. The cafe at Cite Universitaire where we have breakfast is closed, as it's a national holiday. I probably should have known this, but I wasn't sure so I walked over there anyway, hoping to get coffee, only to find all the doors locked. So the morning didn't start off ideally.

But now I am at a cafe listening to a David Guetta mix and enjoying a large, strong cup of coffee. So things are looking up. I'm amped up on coffee and music and making progress on my talks for tomorrow and Friday. I've got a lot of prep still to do, but I have a good sense of what I want to cover, so I'm not too worried. And the work that I do to prepare for the next few days will be helpful for a review article that I've agreed to write.

I hope later to have more time to explore and wander. But I feel like I should get more work done before I do so.

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