Tis the Season to Take to the Paris Streets
A colleague was stuck in holiday traffic more than two hours Saturday preventing her from arriving at an important destination. Friends arrived almost two hours late to dinner that night, but only after they saw no choice but to dump their car and hop on the Métro.
‘Tis the season to take to the streets, tra-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la.
The streets are torn up unmercifully thanks to the city’s program to squeeze out the cars, let in oxygen, make room for bikers, bladers, pedestrians and multi-person vehicles. Even the buses are taking detours to keep rolling along.
The department stores are wall-to-wall with shoppers and the sidewalks are like cattle runs with parents toting their children to ogle the animated windows. The streets are lit with strings of lights and holiday cheer. Money is being spilled like water and everyone is laughing at Sacha Baron Cohen’s hilariously offensive movie, “Borat.”
Yep, ’tis the season to take to the streets, tra-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la.
Paris may be a city of many museums, but Paris is no longer the mummified monumental metropolis we once imagined it to be. “Paris Bouge” says Mayor Bertrand Delanoë, but the cars are stuck in idle spewing their toxic fumes while the concrete is broken laying new ground for a pedestrian-friendly environment. The bourgeoisie who are spoiled by their comfy car bubbles are complaining bitterly, but note how they’ve learned their lesson to take to the streets, tra-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la.
We carry our bags, or wheel them behind us. The muscles we build in our arms and legs give us strength and stamina to go further, do more. We become acquainted with our fellow Parisians and for once, see the details of our centuries-old world we never saw before while whizzing by paying attention only to the reds, yellows or greens of the directional lights.
Bundle up. Put a hat on your head and gloves on your hands. Feel the warmth and the glow of the holiday that comes fast and passes with the blink of an eye. Then, take to the streets.
‘Tis the season, tra-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la.
A la prochaine…
Editor, Parler Paris
P.S. Join us TOMORROW at Parler Paris Après Midi, December 12th, 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. at La Pierre du Marais. Visit /parlerparis/apresmidi.html for more information.
P.P.S. Parler Parlor French-English Conversation Group will be closed for the holidays December 24 – January 1, reopening January 2, 2007. Visit http://www.parlerparlor.com for more information.