Monday, July 01, 2024

Paris in July begins!



It's the beginning of July, and that means it is time for one of my favourite blogging events - Paris in July.

Over the coming month, I will be sharing some book and movie reviews and a few other things. I have been reading plenty of books set in France or by French authors so hopefully I will have enough content for the month!

I thought I would share a quote from a book that I read, reviewed and loved last year, Dreaming in French by Vanessa McCausland







We're on the outskirts of Paris. Every city has its ugly parts, its malls and industry, its concrete overpasses and grey apartment blocks, even Paris. But the ugliness is beautiful to me in its novelty - the impenetrable signage, the cars parked on the street touching hood to tail, people on the sidewalks carrying groceries with strange logos.

A woman on a bike sails by with a baguette under her arm; a man in a black beret walks a black dog; a flower stall erupts colour onto a tired street corner; patrons sip coffee outside a small cafe. And suddenly I want to taste the fresh bread, du pain frais, smell les fleurs, hear the man admonishing his chien in French. It feels like a switch has been flicked inside me. Suddenly, I remember how the taste of coffee changes when it's taken en plein air, outside, watching the world pass by.

Je suis en France.

From the very first words learned at school, the language felt sensual in my mouth, mysterious, but also known. I could pronounce the words and they sounded somehow familiar, as though my mind had only been waiting for another way to make sense of the world. But it wasn't just the words, the lilt and jolt of them on my tongue, it was something else Something indelible, that made me feel this as a place that would have meaning in my life That one day I would go there and find something I couldn't find at home.

Unfortunately I can't be "en France" myself this year, but I can be "en Paris in July"! And I am sure that it is going to have me remembering the time I spent there at the beginning of last year and wanting to visit France once again!

5 comments:

  1. This is the perfect quote to start off my Paris in July adventure. For me, it's the sensual pleasure of being in that city---the light, the smells, the colors, the food.

    Now I want to return to Paris, too.

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  2. Ugly parts? A old guy looking like a bum tried to entice me to follow him behind the back of Le Sacre Coeur, but I was too savvy for that. This was many years ago and in my mid 20s traveling along in Europe..

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  3. Great passage, thanks for sharing!
    Looking forward to all your input during #parisinjuly2024

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  4. Glad to be both participating in this great event

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  5. It never occurred to me that there are shopping malls in France, let alone Paris!!! And I swear if I ever make it to Paris and don't see the streets filled with men wearing striped shirts and berets, I will hop right back on the plane and go home. :-D

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