Women in London, Paris, and Munich

Postcards of London in 1969.


Before I left Thailand in November 1969, I purchased “Fodor’s Europe on $5 Per Day” and was able to find cheap accommodations, restaurants, and transportation in Europe by following directions and tips in that travel book.

My first stop after leaving Bangkok was London.  I rented a room in a cheap student hostel, sharing it with a female law student from Argentina.  She stayed only one night, so after she left, I had the room to myself.  Since it was cold during early November, I had to push coins into a grate in the floor to heat the room.  In the morning, I deposited my small suitcase at the front desk and in the evening, I retrieved the suitcase to take to my room.

I noticed that the English women in London were very stylish with their beautifully tailored winter coats and small hats perched on top of their head.  They wore lipstick, eye makeup and had a flawless peaches and cream complexion.  These women were neither students nor tourists.  They looked like they worked in an office or some place that was clean, definitely not a factory.

The women in Paris were also very stylish.  They did not wear hats like the English women, but did wear long coats, leather boots that reached their knees, and most of them had long dark hair that flowed in the breeze.  They looked slim and beautiful as they strode up the sidewalks of the Left Bank, where I stayed in a small rooming house on a side street.

But, unlike the women in London and Paris, the Bavarian women in Munich were not fashionable at all.  They tended to be obese and wore practical, functional clothes and boots with no sense of style.  They were very rude, too, elbowing me at the bus stop and forcing me to let them board the bus first, even though I was first in line.  Grrrr.  That was an unpleasant experience.

I would have loved to reside in London, because the weather was ideal and the English language was my native tongue (though I do have an American accent).  But, an official at the airport warned me that I was not permitted to look for a job in England, because I was there as a tourist and nothing more. That was unfortunate, because of all the European countries I visited (England, France, Switzerland, Italy, and Germany) in 1969-1970, I liked England the most.

Perhaps, things have changed since then…

7 Responses to “Women in London, Paris, and Munich”

  1. honoluluaunty91 Says:

    Very interesting!

  2. Olga Says:

    I admire you for striking out on your own and taking that opportunity to travel in your youth. I was far too timid at that age.

  3. dkzody Says:

    The daughter of a friend went to work in London. Loved it so much that she bought an apartment and changed her citizenship, giving up her American citizenship. Didn’t even want a dual citizenship. She felt her heart belonged in London.

  4. DJan Says:

    One of my blogging friends lives in London and now I realize what an interesting place it is. I haven’t been there myself.

  5. Christine Says:

    Interesting observations Gigi, I haven’t visited London, just passed through on a connecting flight.

  6. anonymousinthemainland!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Says:

    Our daughter who lives in NYC travels to London for her work..She gets in and gets out, she finds all the middle east people dreadful..She says they are rude and hate americans even though they do lots of business with americans and they hate jewish people which we are..She goes to the middle east and she is okay with it she has to but loves to get into NYC..She has traveled to where you live and doesn’t want to leave the island of Kuai but must to keep her job..she has to go to LA all the time, she doesn’t mind it as she doesn’t live there..She says rude people & intolerant people live anywhere their money goes, I wish we could live where you live but could never afford a home at all, so we stay in Washington state and are grateful but the rain for almost 7 months has been dreadful..We have lived nearly 40 years here and it has never rained and been so gloomy as this past year..Seattle broke all rain records and cold records for 122 years, I say find some sunshine and enjoy it while it lasts, aloha to you and yours in the most wonderful place on earth!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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