17 Oct - 18 Nov 2022
When I first arrived, I met Phoebe Eccles. She had a great style and was so welcoming. She suggested we go for a beer to help settle me in. Over a drink at a bistro nearby, she told me about her time at the apartment. I was sad she was not around to hang out longer with me because we got along well, and I am excited to read her poems.
In the apartment, I unpacked and then walked around the neighbourhood to orient myself. I panicked a little at my lack of French and spent the night making the apartment my own, and I pinched myself at the reality of being in Paris for five weeks to write full-time.
Overcoming my language anxiety, I soon got into a rhythm of a morning coffee and croissant, then a walk around the neighbourhood—the Luxembourg Garden was such a nice, relaxing place to go, no matter the weather. Then I would go back to the apartment and write, read, watch a film, and make dinner.
Sitting at the little window and looking out at the city's skyline gave me a lot of peace and enjoyment. The apartment is filled with the energy of people who have written here before me, and the city is always humming.
I made sure to go to lots of theatre, art shows, and different areas of Paris. I was really impressed by the standard of everything I saw, which was incredibly inspiring. I expected to get lonely, but with so much to do, I felt busy and inspired the whole time.
Five weeks seemed to go by so fast, and I was very sad to leave. On my last day, the next resident, Evie Ward, arrived, and we spent the day together having food and, later, some drinks. It felt so nice to pass the keys onto her, and I am excited to have met another really talented poet.
I loved my time at the Trelex residency in Paris. I want to send a heartfelt thank you to Elizabeth Hansen and Rebecca Molloy for helping organise my stay. I hope to return one day soon as I miss my full-time Paris writer life!