Being tough in Paris


Two things became clear to me after visiting Paris in 1971.There was family history there and I was capable of taking brave decisions in a strange environment.

It was in 1971 and I hadn’t seen my father since leaving Portugal. He came over and headed to Maximus where we met. He also visited and approved my apartment in Nevern Square. He met a girl I was going out with called Silvia. He was given the opportunity to deliver some advice and see how I was doing!


It was decided that I could follow to Paris and stay there for a couple of days and then return back to London. I guess we went by car and I returned by plane.

We found a hotel with Metro connection. We went about trying to find my father’s sister’s grave near the Trocadero. We did not find it! My father had lived in Paris after the war and held very positive memories from this time. My aunt had died later and was buried there.

In the evening I decided to “do the town”. I took the underground to the centre (somewhere around the Champs Elisées) and looked for anything resembling my London world- a disco or night Club. I did find a place went in and took a drink and talked to some of the other youngsters before making my way back to the hotel. Everybody knows that socializing takes some time but I am today rather proud of myself that I could do this all on my own!

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