As I think of 2017’s swift end, I think of the disparity between what I observed for the world at large — a tumultuous year punctuated by political strain, instability, destruction, and uncertainty — and what I felt in my own little world. How do we reconcile personal accomplishments and contentment all while feeling distraught at the direction the world is heading? Perhaps enduring the emotional and psychological impact of the grim news cycle can’t be disassociated from the rest of our lives? I don’t have a firm answer to either question but what I do know after the intensity of the last year is that gratitude, support for others and the recognition that beauty can be found in the most unlikely of places, has never been more important. It’s probably why I’ve thrown myself wholly into holiday festivities this year and have allowed my spirits to be lifted by every twinkling light and rendition of Jingle Bells.
I’ve also finally had a moment to reflect on the fact that the biggest project of my life was released into the world this year. I feel tremendously proud of “The New Paris” but mostly I feel grateful that so many readers have reached out to me to discuss it. It’s after the eight months since its release that I realized the true power of books to inspire, heal, and transport and how necessary they will continue to be in the future. So while the world was slipping further into a mad abyss this year, I achieved something I never knew I wanted nor thought was even conceivable. And that is 100% because of readers like you, who kept reading, traveling, and fueling their curiosity. YOU made my little world brighter and more joyful this year and for that I will be forever grateful.
As the year comes to a close, I’m honored to share that the book was ranked among the top ten travel books of 2017 by Smithsonian Magazine and featured on Christopher Kimball’s Milk Street Radio . And if you’d like to keep following The New Paris as it evolves, please check out the first season of my podcast! I’ll be back in January with new episodes.
Here is wishing you a relaxing and inspiring new year, perhaps even with a visit to Paris.