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We began the morning with a visit to the Louvre before stopping for ice cream and continuing to wander the city for hours, talking without interruption.
Cliché, yes, but that’s how it goes a lot of the time in my home country — the country of passion and romance, where “La Vie en Rose” basically replaced the national anthem a few decades ago, and where pursuing love still means something to most people.
Then, “cultured” men started to appear, eager to share all their knowledge about France with me.
“I know a few words of French: ‘bonjour,’ ‘madame,’ ‘oui.’” Congratulations, you have Google.
In response, I got the reassuring “No worries—I’m not a rapist” and a sarcastic “You’re such a nun.”For a (long) minute, I regretted downloading Tinder.
This unashamed sexual pressure was completely new and weird.
And believe it or not, I’m more than my nationality. “You’re hot enough to melt fire and burn Satan,” some man wrote, leaving me genuinely confused. I’ve been exposed to the same type of gross comments in person in France when taking the subway or walking on the street, but they never popped up on my phone during the middle of day.
It was like having the same nightmare over and over again, and turns out, it was just the petits fours.I’ve never felt as much emotionally insecure as I have since I moved here.In France, you don’t ask someone to be your girlfriend or boyfriend unless you’re in kindergarten.For whatever reason, I went forward with the date with Andre. Once I got there, I started to feel really nervous, and when I’m nervous, my accent becomes even stronger.I had to repeat what I was saying a couple of times, every time I spoke.