By Chenyi (Alice) Xu, Grade 11

"I wanted to see you again, touch you, know who you were, see if I would find you identical with the ideal image of you …" —Victor Hugo, The Hunchback of Notre-Dame

I will never forget the feeling of looking out from the top of Notre Dame Cathedral and the incredible design of its intricate stained glass windows.

One thing I will never regret in my life is travelling to Paris to appreciate all the artwork and historical monuments that our ancestors left for us.

April 16, 2019 was a sad day. Notre Dame Cathedral, a building nearly 850 years old, a building that symbolized France, was destroyed in a massive fire, which is not only a tragedy for all French people but for all humankind.

Exactly 30 days ago, on a school trip to London and Paris during spring break, I was lucky enough to be one of the last few people to go to the top of Notre Dame Cathedral. It was a fantastic experience for all of us who were there because we created so many amazing memories that we will never forget. The total climb was 387 steps. Climbing stairs has never been my favourite thing, but I will never regret climbing those stairs to see one of the most marvellous objects I have ever seen — Emmanuel, the largest bell in Notre Dame. I hope one day in the future it will ring again.


Balmoral Hall School

Our mission at Balmoral Hall School is to inspire girls' imagination and courage to excel, to reach, to lead, to care.

We are a day and boarding school, offering an exceptional educational experience to girls aged 2 through Grade 12.