This first time I came to France was 20 years ago. I was 17 and had just finished my first year of college. I sold my car and bought a one-way ticket to Paris.
I only stayed for 3 months. But that was long enough. Long enough to decide I loved it here. Long enough to know how spot a groper from a mile away. Long enough to never be afraid to be alone somewhere unknown.
My kids are so totally NEVER doing ANYTHING like that.