According to Urban Dictionary

Boheme - Carefree lifestyle unbounded by convention.

Bohemian - Movement of artist and poets in late 19th century France, especially in Paris. Bohemians believed in living outside of the bourgeois (conventional, middle class) mainstream culture. Bohemians were against the Salon (the institution that controlled the literary and art market in France until the turn of the 20th century)and believed that art and literature should be radical. They often gathered in "cafes" and drank absinthe. Many Bohemians were politically radical, being either anarchists or members of the Commune de Paris during the Franco-Prussian war. The Bohemian movement died out at the turn of the century but had a large influence on later movements such as surrealism, the beat generation, and punk rock.
Toulouse - Lautrec depicted the romanticized life of many Bohemians, although the reality of the life-style was often very difficult and tragic.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Bizare mating rituals of Internationals and Parisians are a strange breed!

I think one of the main things an expat living in Paris will tell you is that Parisians in general, are a strange breed of people and that it is hard to make friends with the locals. Most expats start out in Paris with high ideals of wanting to not just be hanging out with other English speakers or Internationals. Instead wanting to integrate and meet French friends. However, after a few months of living in Paris it soon becomes clear that it is not so easy,it's a case of making friends with other English speakers and expats from other countries or make no friends at all. I think it is hard to make friends with Parisians because many of them have tight insular friendship groups that they have had for many years and they just have no need of adding to their groups. So, in a search for like minded people to hangout with I have been joining some meet up groups that organise events to meet other expats. Having attended three very successful meet ups through the Aussie meet up group ( one of course being Australia Day) I decided to join an Internationals meet up group. Tonight was the first meet up I attended with this group and I dragged S along with me to check it out. Which, in hindsight was a wise thing to do or the evening might have been a total waste of time. We went to a tapas bar (yes I am aware I am in France not Spain) where S and I enjoyed a few glasses of yummy Sangria. We were there a little early and along with a few other early birds enjoyed a bit of a conversation trying to find a language in common. After a little while and quite a few more arrivals S and I began to notice that there was a certain age of person attending this function and that most of them had been living in Paris for 10 to 15 years plus already and had just started attending this meetup. It was then that we decided that most people in the room were probably already divorced at least once and it seemed to be their form of picking up other long time expat (divorcees?). Cynical of us maybe but all I can say is that I think I was the youngest in the room and apart from S's five years seniority by a good ten or fifteen years. So yes I was glad I had dragged a friend along, but at least it was an experience.

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