Once again we learned just how wonderful the French are. And the Parisians themselves—they are amazing. It seems unfair that they have a bad reputation. I’ve never had a bad experience here or anywhere in France for that matter. People are truly kind, especially if you are struggling. And even more especially if you are trying to understand, to speak the language and appreciate their culture.
This is the most perfect place to read Julia Child’s great memoir My Life in France. It eases up the envy as you are downing good food in Paris. Otherwise it would be too depressing when she goes on about les poulets, les ouefs, les frommages. Child says quite accurately:
“The sweetness and generosity and politeness and gentleness and humanity of the French had shown me how lovely life can be if one takes the time.”
There is a special kind of politeness that seems particularly French. You never hear them talking at the top of their lungs in restaurants. On the bus, everyone offers a seat to an older person and that includes males, females and the young doing the offering. We bon bour our way through the day including the courtly old beggar who is stationed near our place. It doesn’t seem to matter if we gave him money or not.
The French seem to be able to sniff out someone who is suspicious of them. If you go out into their world with a smile, shoulders back and love being there, they also get that immediately. They treat you with great respect.
Watch Parisians walk. No wonder there are no fat people here except for foreigners. They don’t walk they stride, they march, they run for buses and this has no age range either. Try walking like you belong here and you’ll lose weight.
They are super kindly to older people. Now I’m in that category, I really appreciate it. As a woman I don’t feel like I’ve disappeared into the ether. People like at you, not through you, no matter what your age. I had more compliments on my jewelry, my scarves, my shoes from people in shops than has ever happened at home. It’s extremely touching. There is a sense here of being cherished.
I hope we get back to Paris some day. We really should go and have a look at some of the tourist places.
Oh and if you missed it yesterday here’s the link to the best review my husband author Jack Batten has received in his life.
You have to read this and buy it for everyone you know for all holidays and Christmas