One place in Paris I will miss after I leave is the park near my homestay, Parc Monceau. I stumbled upon it one day when I made the spontaneous decision to explore the area around my homestay after my classes had finished for the day. It is probably one of the most impressive and remarkable parks I have been to, with its large stone rotunda standing in between ornate gold-tipped iron gates, which mark the entrance to the park, and its various features and monuments that can be found inside the park, including a pond with a row of Greek columns lining the edge of the water. On many evenings I would stroll through the park and admire both the natural and man-made aesthetically pleasing structures in the park. It truly was a place for me to be alone with nothing but my thoughts. In a place like Paris, with the incessant traffic, the crowded streets filled with clueless and obnoxious tourists, and the political protests that inevitably lead to the destruction of both public and private property, it was a special refuge for a weary mind like mine.
Eventually, I shared the secret of Parc Monceau with an acquaintance who lived close by, and it was there that our friendship took root, like the roots of the many trees in the park. It proved to be fertile soil, as our friendship and time together in Paris have become my most cherished memory of my time abroad. In time, our friendship became as special and essential a source of refuge for me as the park itself.
Parc Monceau, Claude Monet