Bonjour to you all.
This week I’ve had lots of emails and messages from people asking “should I come to Paris still?” or “what is the mood like in Paris?”
Well, no-one can tell you if you should still come, it has to be a personal decision but I know that some people are worried about it. Check your country’s consular website for up to date information but Paris is not on the list to stay away and never has been.
As to what the mood is like and whether your visit will be ruined – I asked lots of my friends who live in Paris and people I know who have visited in the last couple of weeks.
Linda, one of our regular writers, a resident of Paris says “everyone still continues to go out and the cafes are full. We had an American in our apartment and she felt safe walking around. The markets were much quieter but life goes on and you have to eat.”
My American friend Laurel who runs a lovely restaurant/bakery called 13 says “The days following the attacks were filled with lots of very heartfelt hugs from my very awesome regular clients. People are working through their grief, and their fear. Though I feel worried, the mood here in Paris is not sinister. People are certainly more attentive to others around them, but no one is staying inside and hiding. Parisians have been through quite a lot through the ages… we are a resilient bunch.”
Visitor to France Jessica (from UK) says “I was there last weekend and saw soldiers only once but I didn’t do any of the major tourist attractions. I had a lovely weekend and met up with friends who live there and are just getting on with their lives”. And Maggie from the UK says “My neighbour was there this week and surprised there were no evident soldiers around. She did say that every time she went into a shop, she had her bag searched. She had expected things to be more strict and martial-like but things have moved on a bit”.
So, for those of you who’ve emailed me and anyone worried about their planned visits to Paris and France, I hope this helps.
I think the motto of Paris (which dates back to the 14th century) sums it up nicely: “Fluctuat nec mergitur” translates as “”Il est battu par les flots, mais ne sombre pas””: “It is beaten by the waves but does not sink”…
Wishing you all a bon weekend
Bisous from France
This week’s top features on the website
Arty Party Lille and Lille3000 – one of the most amazing art festivals in the world in the northern French city that’s the capital of fun in France!
Deliciously Gooey Baked Camembert Recipe: This comes from the clever chefs at Walnut Grove Cookery School in France where they teach you to cook while you’re having fun. Utterly irresistible…
French Dessert Wines to have with your Holiday Pudding: Jill Barth, our wine expert advises what wines go best with sweet things for the season…
Capestang – the perfect introduction to the Canal du Midi: picturesque, tranquil and utterly intoxicating, Lucy Pitts hires a boat from the tourist office in this little town in the St Chinian area, Languedoc Roussillon, for the day and enjoys a picnic on the water…
Vaux-le-Vicomte at Christmas: This beautiful chateau dresses up in all its finery for the season and this year they’ve put in a Ferris wheel so you can see up to the roof!
Where are the best places to live in France? I get asked this a lot so I asked the experts at Home Hunts….
PS – next week The Good Life France Christmas Advent Calendar opens its first window – check it out daily on Facebook!