When I tell people that I live in Paris, I often hear things like “I love Paris! It’s so beautiful,” “OMG, Paris is so pretty!” “I love _______ (insert Parisian area/neighborhood/district of choice)! It’s so charming!” “You must love the _______ (see previous instructions)! It was my favorite place when I visited there.”
At first, the short amount of time I had spent in the city allowed me to say things like “I haven’t been there yet, but I’ll definitely check it out,” to the satisfaction of those who had now given me, the resident of Paris, a recommendation on something new to see or do. And I took as many of those recommendations as I could in the early months. But recently it has dawned on me that the more people tell me how much they love certain little pieces of Paris, the harder it is for me to relate. Why? Simple: I have spent so much time and energy trying not to be a tourist, that I have flat-out avoided some of the parts of this city that make it so… Parisian.
So I’ve made a resolution to cut that out. I don’t care if I look like a tourist or not. The truth is, I live here, and if my American accent and constant stops to take pictures annoy the people around me… too bad. I’m here now, and I’m going to make the most of it. I would regret moving away from this place without having experienced the ins and outs of such a famously beautiful, culture-rich city.
To try and get better acquainted with the Paris that lies beyond the 12th arrondissement, I spent part of my Saturday last weekend taking my bicycle along the Seine and admiring beauty that was meant to be beheld. At some point I will compile all of the photos I’ve taken in and around Paris to add to my Cities: in Photos series (which still has yet to see Kos! Bad blogger!), but in the meantime, here’s a peek at what you can see in the city when you cycle through the streets. Enjoy!