‘Aged 11, I was too big for Paris’

I really enjoyed this article. Aside from offering good advice about properly eating food, it’s interspersed with humor about trying to fit into a world not really built for overweight people.


I really appreciate the way the Aunt stuck up for the correspondant when she was a child. In my own experience, I was usually told that I could melt the fat off before I was made to get into a scalding tub of hot water or that it was mostly dirt and dead skin and not fat…yeah, 120lbs of dirt and dead skin…suuuuure. The funniest one was when my grandmother tried putting some kind of girdle around me to ‘make me look smaller’ for her church people.


Aside from being annoying, I wasn’t into the whole fashion bullshit, so it wore a little thin. Pun intended.


I think everyone needs an Aunt like the writer had at some point in their lives to stick up for them and let them know that rude behavior is unacceptable.

‘Aged 11, I was too big for Paris


By Caroline Wyatt

BBC News, Paris


Although known for their love of wine, cheese and steak-frites, the French have an uncanny way of remaining rather svelte. So what is their secret and can they continue to shrink from obesity in the face of their ever-growing appetite for fast food and fizzy drinks?



My first memory of Paris is of arriving for a visit at the age of 11.


The weekend came courtesy of my French aunt Camille, a Parisienne from the tip of her perfect blonde bob to the kitten heels of her Charles Jourdan shoes. She was petite, not much taller than me at the time… and rather slimmer.


She smelt of Chanel No 5, wore French designer clothes and – to my child’s eyes – was the ultimate in sophistication.


And she was taking me shopping to Galeries Lafayette, the Paris equivalent of Selfridges.


I was thrilled… until the moment the Parisian shop assistant eyed my English boarding school figure with that unique hauteur that only Parisian shop assistants can muster, and began an animated conversation.


My aunt’s grip on her Hermes-style handbag became quite steely and the discussion ended with the words: “well, the English are bigger for their age.”


Years of sausage and chips, and bread and butter pudding at school had taken their toll.


Aged 11, I was too big for Paris. (More)

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