Monday, November 18, 2013

I figured out the women of Paris

And it isn't that they don't get fat!

I like to observe people and how they live. I find people fascinating! Why do they do whatever it is they are doing. What ARE they doing?
Recently, I was in Paris with hubby. Traveling with a husband you normally spend only half of your time with can be interesting. We haven't spent this much time together since our honeymoon. And, a beach/chill honeymoon is very different than a hurried and less romantic trip to Amsterdam and Paris - but that's another story. Back to people of Paris.

Paris is full of fabulous people. Even the garbage men are attractive in a way only a Parisian garbage man can be. The women and their looks, shoes and overall air is remarkable. Then there are the men. Handsome and pretty metro-sexual in suits or jeans- and make both options look fabulous! Even the children make us Americans feel less fabulous. The clothing ads show children with their pouts. The toddler in his stroller with his fabulous hat and scarf being walked by his equally impressive parents.

Everyone is slightly fabulous, this is obvious. But after a while I could help notice differences beyond their obvious fabulousness and my lack thereof.

Parisian women and American women in my opinion have differences in three main areas:
  • Makeup
  • Jewelry
  • Expressions
The makeup - I couldn't help but notice how beautiful all these French women looked (and very similar to how beautiful the women in Amsterdam were too). Yes, they may claim to wear less makeup, but it is really HOW they wear it that makes the difference. They do not wear eye makeup the way we do; if they wear it at all, and I don't mean some of the women, I mean all of them from high school aged to adults. Mascara...yes. Eyeliner...sometimes. Eyeshadow...almost never unless they all wear a secret nude shade that makes them all look marvelous. No, I'm pretty sure my eye makeup gave me away, unless my other faults did so first.

The jewelry - They wear it, just not like us. Not many gaudy necklaces or blingy watches. Don't get me wrong, I love my sparkly Michael Kors watch and the necklaces that seem to say "Hello" without screaming it; but even that was much more than the Parisian women. Then there were the wedding rings. You know how "bigger is better" for rocks in the US? Well, not at all the case in France. IF a woman wore a ring, it was just one and more often than not it was a single gold band. No comparing sparkles with friends, no "Oh let me see that rock!" after an engagement. Just simple and still beautiful rings on the fabulous married women of Paris.

Then the expressions - the one thing I could never change about myself. They aren't very expressive. Sure they can do that Paris-pout but what about laughter, excitement or disgust and not the Parisian's disgust with American tourists we all imagine, but the lip-curling, eye-rolling, head-turning disgust we Americans do not even try to hide? I see none of it! I watch and listen and wait -  on trains, at restaurants and elsewhere I see and hear none of it! I laughed out loud (LOLed if you will)  at a cafe and felt immediately embarrassed! With Americans, we laugh, we giggle and yes, we even roll our eyes with not much worry that it is inappropriate. I have a very tough time not showing my feelings on my face - even when I am actively trying (just ask my former boss who had multiple sit-down meetings with me about my involuntary facial expressions and her disgust with them...I HAVE TRIED!).

Ah well, I guess my Midwest-Cowgirl hybrid of America has no interest in turning French although I do like the makeup style. But I liked that first and most in the Amsterdam pancake restaurant when the beautiful women were so friendly and beautiful. But my subtle bling and facial expressions are going no where!