Annie Bananie en Europe

A blog about travel, life, and everyday tidbits


It’s been a while.

In fact, it’s been too long.

I kept telling myself to update, but life has been so abundant and exciting lately that it feels surreal. So much has happened, yet it feels like no time has passed at all. All too fast, too sudden.

This is going to be somewhat of a personal entry. I haven’t done much travelling since I came back to Bordeaux (other than St. Emilion again, twice actually), but when you’re in a place that feels like a true home, even wanderlust can’t pull you away. And this is exactly how I had been feeling for the past month or so. Bordeaux – and the people I’ve met here – has already become such a part of my identity. I feel happy here. No embellishing adjective needed, just happy.

The following set of pictures has no particular theme, and are selected from the 32084092384 photos that had been taken within the last month and a half to represent my everyday life. Each picture is accompanied by a small blurb of personal thoughts with regards to my experiences in Bordeaux so far. I apologize if this entry seems scattered; I just want to reorganize my thoughts a little, and share with you something that is more “real” life, for once.

Outside my little studio, we see the mighty St. Andrew’s cathedral and the Pey Berland tower to its right. It still awes me that I am in France, living in such an elegant city. There’s that word again, elegant. I used it to describe Bordeaux when I first arrived in the autumn season, and during the summer, this gem is elegant as ever. It’s so different than the Toronto that I know, and though I’d like to believe that my heart will always remain first in Toronto, Bordeaux is slowing stealing it away from that land that feels so far, far away…

Whenever I feel sad or depressed, or just want to spend some time away from people, in a quiet place, I like to dwell in St. Andrew’s and just sit there for a bit, listening to the sound of silence. When life is too good, you begin to take it for granted. After the period of comfort, you sink into a trap and you begin to wonder whether you deserve it or not. The fear of losing what you have, especially the ones you love, is so strong, so…suffocating.

Dinner at my place. You know, having people around me to love and tolerate me is already the greatest blessing; I couldn’t possibly ask for any more. And allowing me to pour my love onto these people, letting me do all that I can to see the smiles on their face – it is a privilege, and all that is left for me to do is give thanks.

Oh yeah, there’s been good food. This here is the spicy hot pot that we had last week, with beer, of course! For the past two weeks or so I’ve been inviting friends over to my place almost every night. It feels good being the host, offering what I have to those I care about and those I want to know better. Indeed, I don’t cook nearly as well as I make it seem, so it’s even more fun to invite everyone to cook together. I’m surprised how many people my house can hold. So far the record is 12, and I don’t think I’ll break that any time soon. Anyone is welcomed any time though!

Although hiding behind a camera (the DSLR is not mine, by the way, though it was pretty much in my possession that entire night), this is the realest me. I’ve developed such a liking for photography within the past two years or so that I finally have to cave in and search for a DSLR. The soonest that I may be the owner of one would be in a week and one day…we’ll see where this leads.

In the middle of the street, between the tram tracks. My dad always gasps at how beautiful Europe is and tells me that he adores the architecture here. I think if he were to see this picture the first thing he would comment on would be the style of the building behind me. Before I leave Europe for good – not for at least another two years – I will certainly bring my dad over here and share with him all that he has wanted to see and experience for so long.

Anyway, I would put the emphasize on the tram tracks in this photo, simply because I’ve always loved the railway, if you didn’t know. Why walk on the sidewalks when you could glide on the metal rails and follow their trails? I also wonder if one person can safely fit in between two trams passing by each other in opposite directions…

You know you’re living the French lifestyle when on a Sunday afternoon you’re sitting lazily in a cafe with three of the most awesome people you’ve met (the other two are sitting on the opposite side taking this picture), sipping on delicious hot chocolate while doing nothing else for two hours. Shown here are Annie and Yuehong, cutest girl ever. These days can’t last forever, and I can’t be greedy and wish they do. It’s enough to cherish these moments of peace and keep them in my memories forever.

Jumping for joy, anyone? This is probably one of the most classic expressions I’ve managed to pull off in a picture, and I was only able to do so because I felt so freed and relaxed during the shot. How much I long to spend more time with these people I call friends!

Even though I have never understood the iHype and will never buy an iProduct, I will admit that the iPad does have some amusing features and apps. A friend and I found the Zen Brush app on this iPad on display while wandering in Fnac, and after playing with it for a good half an hour, left with this note. The Chinese translation is “Continue, Bordeaux”, but “Go on” sufficiently portrays the message that we wanted to deliver. Each one of us has grown so much in this city, even me, who has only been here for less than a year. There is so much more to learn, so much more to discover, so much more to feel, so much more to enjoy. So go on, Annie, love the place with all your heart while you’re here. Who knows where you may end up in the future…

In the end, there’s a view outside my window. The sun will always come out after the rain, and if you’re lucky, you’ll see the legendary arc of hope. If you’re REALLY lucky, you’ll see its reflection in the distance. Reflection, yes, that is the title of this entry, and how fitting it is to use this picture as the end of the post. It may rain; it may even rain for a long time, but the rain will fade away, and out come the colours of my heart.

I’ve decided to, from this point on, not give myself the restriction of writing once a week. As you can see, I’ve broken the trend twice in a row already, and as school gets busier in second year, I’m sure there will be weeks when I can’t update. On the contrary, there may be weeks when I will post more than once a week if I have the time and inspiration.

I’ve enjoyed writing this entry very much, and it feels like I’ve written my first “feelings” post on this blog. I am satisfied, and so this won’t be the only time you’re seeing something like this. I look forward to sharing more of my personal thoughts on this blog with you!

2 responses to “Reflections

  1. June July 22, 2011 at 13:02

    love your words and pictures:D


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