One never sees Paris for the first time; one always sees it again…
Edmondo de Amicis
The timeless Paris.
Paris is always the same.
Nothing changes in Paris.
This post is, clearly, about Paris. And its everlasting-ness.
We went back to the french capital last week, during a Grand Tour type holiday which included Edinburgh, London and the Martinique. More on those in future posts. We arrived in Paris after the two UK capitals and right before the sunny Caribbean island; we were greeted with exactly the same feeling. As every other time. Paris is, undoubtably, always the same.
We lived there during my pre-teens and we went back various times in the following years:
It’s always full of tourists, there are always lots of cars, everyone is rude (sorry, but the cliché is too true, especially after the delightful politeness of the British). The clothes shops are amazing, don’t have large sizes and are too expensive anyway. The bread is scrumptious, the pain au chocolat incredible, taxi drivers don’t have gps, the days are perennial twilights (does the sun rise in winter in Paris?).The rooftops catch your gaze unlike any other city in the world, the policemen are not helpful, art is in every forgotten corner. There are patisseries everywhere (how much chocolate can one Parisian eat?!). The cinemas are always in OV, the bistros always have soup a l’oigon, there are oysters and it rains. Or it’s cloudy. But when the sun comes out the leaves on the trees turn a magical amber colour (we always go in autumn or winter, so that’s the colour they are, if they’re there at all), the Parisians seep into their tidy parks to bask in the sun, frowns dissolve into smiles, work is cancelled for a café au lait at one of the tables that sprouted on the sidewalks. It becomes the beautiful, nostalgic Paris that everyone knows. Not grey, but black and white. Yes, Paris is, undoubtably, black and white.
PS Evidence points to the fact that Paris is the Romantic Capital of the World. However, not having been ever in love in Paris, I cannot say.