My French Impressions

Paris

A few things we’ve taken not of since our arrival in this fine city.  We had thought that some stereotypes had to be quashed about the French, Parisians in particular:

Friendly French

In our experience, Parisians are extremely polite, friendly and helpful.  Wolf has noted that the girls are also very pretty… he’s not sure why they are prettier than the gals back home, but according to this one sixteen-year-old Canadian, the French girls are prettier (he says he must work on his French).

Bread

How can people eat baguettes every day, possibly at each meal?  I thought that this must be an extreme stretching of the truth, but I guess not.  No kidding.  I have never eaten so much bread in my life!

Smoking in Paris

Do the French smoke? Well, is the Eiffel Tower tall?  I have considered taking it up just while we are here so we don’t appear so conspicuously foreign.  Why do they smoke? I have no idea, and haven’t asked.  But they smoke boldly, and in most places, and while they have dinner (but only outside restaurants) and never in the Metro.

Wine is Cheaper than Water

Coming from a country where we heavily tax this fine beverage, I have no real sense of the untaxed price of a bottle of average wine.  But here, where wine can be bought and sold alongside popcicles at the corner store (yes in the same bin for a chilled Rose), wine can be purchased for less than the same volume of bottled water.  Wine is cheaper than chocolate, and coffee.  The coffee is not cheap.  Okay, I exaggerate here; coffee is still cheaper than wine, but only the cafe express (espresso).  If you want a cafe creme, (like a cappuccino) you’ll be matching the price of a glass of wine at many places.  I try to get my fix (both coffee and wine) at home (our rented flat), and have a top-up while we are out and about ( at the appropriate hours).  I do love the cafe here.

Inspiration in Paris

I have  been inspired to have my main character in my current writing project recall her visit to Paris in the 1930s.  But of course I wasn’t here in the 1930s, though many of the same landmarks (perhaps all but the Centre George Pompidou) were.  I found this travel footage, on youtube, that features silent black-and-white travel impressions.  Quite fantastic.

Now, I am off to make some of my own, stills, if not video, and take in more of the city!

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1 Comment

Filed under France, novel research, Paris, writing

One response to “My French Impressions

  1. Hi Lorrie,

    You are so right…about everything. The wine, the friendliness (except the waiters, we found), the obsession with baguettes and smoking. And Wolf is right too! The French women and girls are pretty. We had many of the same experience when we were there in early July. Thanks for taking us along on your journey.

    Christie

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