23.10.2009 - 24.10.2009 53 °F
Two weeks ago something funny happened. I had my wallet out to scan my navigo pass to get onto the metro and after I had scanned it, I slipped my wallet into my back pocket. It may not seem strange to you at first, but it is. It means something.
When I first arrived to Paris I wore a money belt under my shirt. In this belt I carried cash, as well as my passport and a credit card. After the first day I no longer wore the money belt, but I would keep money and credit cards on different parts of my body. I would keep some in my backpack, some in my pants pocket, some in my jacket pocket, and at one point I was even putting bills in my shoes. In the rare chance that my super ninja skills failed me and I was mugged, I would have some money stashed away in my shoe to call for help.
Little did I know then that I could have just used my actual shoe to call for help.
But its probably better that you don't ask...
I also used to carry my backpack with me everywhere. It was good for stashing some cash but I also would keep a copy of my passport in there. We had been warned that French Police can stop you at any time and ask to see your credentials, not providing them warrants a trip to the slammer; not exactly where I had intended to spend my time abroad.
Just like the money belt, in time these things began to fade. Without even thinking about it, I stopped carrying my backpack, unless I was going to school. With the exception of going to large events or bars, I even stopped placing money in different places on me.
All of this meant that I was becoming more comfortable in my environment, but I never stopped putting my wallet in my front pocket. That was until two weeks ago. Again, without even thinking about it, I just slipped it right back there. It's not that I am any less cautious or that I have a false sense of security. It's just that after almost two months, this is starting to become home.
And let me tell you, Paris is not a bad place to call home.