In the dark, France and I have a destiny. The foreign literature I read most in college was French; The first country I visited after graduating from university was France. When I arrived in the United States, my English name, Lily, happened to be closely related to the national flower of France, Fleur de lis.
Iris vetiver and lily are very similar at first sight. They both seem to have six "petals", so Europeans often call iris lily. But only lilies have six, and irises only three. Perhaps because of the number of petals, lilies are much more beautiful and graceful than irises in my eyes. In ancient Egypt, however, irises, along with lilies and lotus and palm leaves, formed the "Tree of Life" pattern. Because the iris has three petals, after the rise of Christianity, it became the Lily of Valley, and it was considered a symbol of the Trinity.
I wonder if from this point on, irises and lilies are inseparable. Compared with iris, which few people know, lily, which represents purity and nobility, is more popular. With spiritual blessing, the lily also acquired an unshakable status in France, and this unshakable status was related to the baptism of the Frankish king. According to legend, Clovis I of the Frankish kingdom, the first barbarian leader to embrace Christianity after the collapse of the Roman Empire, received golden lilies as a gift from God at his baptism ceremony. Since then, lily in France in addition to become a symbol of holiness, but also represents god to give the king to rule the sacred power of the people, lily flower pattern has become a symbol of the French royal family. Lily decorations can be seen in French religion, politics and royalty, in French art, insignia and weapons, and even in the flag of the Kingdom of France and before the Revolution of July 1830. Today, the former French colonies, such as the provincial flag of Quebec in Canada, the municipal flag of Montreal, and st. Louis, Detroit, and New Orleans in the United States, still use lilies as city flags or city emblems.
I've always wanted to explore France because of my many connections with it. I've been to Paris twice, in the fall and winter, and my impression of Paris was completely different. In autumn, Paris is as beautiful as a fairy. The experience in Paris in winter once made me make a vow: Never see Paris again. But when I returned from a trip to Turkey and The Benelux, I was more interested in the country with which I had so many ties, and determined to get drunk with it. Although I had already bought a ticket to Milan, Italy, with a voucher, luckily, the ticket could be changed for free. Even if I couldn't change it, I would go all the way from Milan to France. More fortunately, this trip to France, accompanied by Mr.. Since the outbreak, he has been holed up at home. Only after he was vaccinated did he dare to travel. On Christmas day, he made a mistake, and this time he walked with me for 31 days, so that I would never have to travel here and there by myself, as I did in Turkey and The Netherlands. Because of his company, my trip to France is not only stress-free, but also extremely enjoyable.
Having a good trip doesn't mean I don't have heart palpitations, but the one that did the most was renting a car. Since the return flight was in the afternoon, I set the time to pick up my car at the Paris airport for 12 noon. According to my travel experience, it is ok to pick up the car in advance, but when we got off the plane at 9.30am to pick up the car, the rental company told us: "No car, only 12 noon". It was not a problem to pick up the car late, but it was then that I found out I had rented an electric car. I had never rented an electric car abroad and I had no idea where to charge it. Asked the car rental company if they could change the car, they were told that all the cars had been rented and there was no one left. My head immediately big, hurriedly go to other car rental company consultation, a question, spot car rental, a month more than 3,000 euros. At that time the euro and the dollar were not "even", synthetic dollars, almost 4,000, extremely expensive. The husband said: "rent, better than looking for charging pile."
I can't be reconciled. While I was waiting, I asked my car rental company if it was possible to change my car at 12 noon and he said it was possible. I asked him what the percentage was and he said 70 percent. As SOON as I heard, "Yes," I felt a faint smile in my heart, thinking, "How can I have such good luck?" My luck really is that good. At 11 o 'clock, the rental company called me to check in. I looked at the rental car and found it was a brand new Honda hybrid with just over 1400 kilometers on it. In Europe, where gas is expensive, I wonder how much a hybrid will save me on gas. Not only that, BUT I was the first person to rent this car. I didn't even have to go through the inspection process, and the rental company let me have this car for the full price. I was so happy.
It was only when I got behind the wheel of the brand new car that I realized how serious it was. The line change must hit the turn signal, do not hit the steering wheel began to shake; Can't move without safety belt; Overspeed car alarm system started; With a constant driving system, the car automatically slows down when it is far from the vehicle in front, etc. So I took this car, which was new to me, from Paris, up to the thousand-year-old cities of Amiens and Rouen, down the Atlantic, past the Landings of Normandy during World War II and the Coast of roses, deep into the Loire Valley, known as the Garden of France, stopping in the historic cities of Nantes, Tours and Orleans, Then go south along the Dordogne River, known as the smile of France, and embrace the Dordogne Valley. Then indulge in Bordeaux, which is famous for its wineries.
After a rest in the Pyrenees mountains bordering Spain, advance to the hometown of lavender, enter the Valley of Verdun, wander in the Cote d 'Azur of the Mediterranean, pass through a household city, but also into Monaco, where the rich people live together, and finally head north to pick up the footprints left by the Ancient Roman Empire in Lyon and other cities. Experience the mountains and valleys at the Border of Italy and Switzerland, then continue north to visit the cities of Strasbourg, which is a hot spot for military experts. The journey is over 7,500 kilometers. While these miles don't come close to the 9,000km I drove in Turkey alone, with my husband with me, this trip to France was complete and easy. I myself had Dunkirk in northern France in my arms on my Christmas trip to The Benelux. By this reckoning, I had travelled almost round and round France. Had I seen all of France?
If you look at all the world cultural heritage sites, I don't. I have seen 18 World Heritage sites in Turkey, but France, which is only two-thirds the size of Turkey and has less history, has 45. I couldn't watch it all in a month. I'm not sorry, though, that some of the world's monuments aren't worth visiting. They may end up like the historic cities of Tour, Toulouse and Reims that I've visited with great hopes. In France, however, I was pleasantly surprised by the great cities I also had high hopes for, like Bordeaux, Marseille and Lyon, and by towns both well-known and unknown, Cities like Saint-Malo on the Atlantic coast, Domme in the Dordogne Valley, Carcassonne, and Annecy at the foot of the Alps, however, are as much a reason to come back to France as the cities that have surprised me. France, because of them, has become a movable feast in my heart.
This feast, can not leave the French Michelin restaurant. Born in France, the Michelin Guide is another example of stylish and elegant France. I had my heart set on eating in one of the Michelin restaurants in Belgium, but it didn't work out in the end. I had five in France. They were in Rouen, Honfleur, Carcassonne, Lyon and Colmar. Although Michelin restaurants are certainly excellent in food quality, the Michelin in Carcasson that we discovered by accident is the star that will stay in our hearts forever. And the Michelin in Colma, because it is our wedding anniversary, will also be different in our hearts.
Although both Michelin restaurants hold an important place in our hearts, a one-month trip to France, for me, is a tour, for Sir, is a pain. In a month, we went through dozens of cities and towns, which made him think I was moving too fast. Back in the United States, he said, the college town we lived in was the best place in the world. I agree that many of the places I've been to in France are a waste of time, but how do you know if they're good or bad until you experience them? Just like our life, only through experience, we know that maybe we have done the things we should not have done, love the people we should not have loved. All of these are the punishment and warning of the great God in heaven, so that we can turn over a new face, purify our souls and become the people that the great God likes. I try to live and do things according to god's will, not because I hope to go to heaven, nor because I am afraid of going to hell. I just want to live a life in vain, just like the song says: "If you do not live a life in vain, colorful clouds chase you while wild geese call you. Live to live a cloud rising xia, live to live to increase brightness, live to live a tiger."