Monday, 22 September 2008
La vie Parisienne
So owing to some uninteresting hardware issues here, I've unfortunately not been able to blog quite as much as I might have liked. Sat here in the Eurostar terminal (on the floor, bien sur - chairs are obviously not aesthetically pleasing enough for Gare du Nord), I'm struck once again by a love for Paris. I still can't place my finger on exactly what it is, but if pushed, I'll say the atmosphere of civility. There's something exceptionally correct about working a legal number of maximum hours (35 per week) with a legally imposed hour's lunch break, having your company pay for your lunch, having a reasonable amount of paid holiday and a healthy respect for how and how not to work. Added to this is the idea that an afternoon spent in a cafe en bavardant is an acceptable weekend activity, and not spending every waking hour not in work down the pub (though don't get me wrong, I love doing this, it can be a little heavy on mind, body and wallet) makes for a particularly serene experience. Yes, this was more of a holiday than a business trip, but it just feels right here. It feels like priorities are in the right place in Paris, and as I sit here surrounded by British tourists fretting about passport control, the time, the weather and how to spend those last damned Euros, I find myself wondering if I should just stay after all. Parisian life is the epitome of a Staple - not just parties and gigs (though that's there if you want it) but a more fulfilling, pleasant and civilised way of spending your days. Paris, je t'aime.