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I’ll Always Have Paris

Tuesday, April 8th, 2014   11:19 am |  Category:   Retirement locations, Travel   |   2 Comments  
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3. The respect

Respect is rife over here. Respect for the quality and presentation of everything, respect for others and respect for yourself. You will never see a Parisian sloppily dressed when they stand in line at the boulangerie. They will always appear ‘neat’. Never over the top or overly made up, but that quintessentially Parisian “effortlessly chic”. They seem to have that je ne sais quoi thing down pat.

Retire in Paris, FranceParisians will always prefer an artisanal-made boulangerie baguette over an industrial-made supermarket one, any day. Respect for the product even at the cost of convenience means that they will go out of their way to pick up the more superior product. Even if that means getting out of bed and making yourself look presentable on a Saturday morning to bring back some fresh croissants for breakfast. As a side effect, this French mentality also helps to keep local boulangeries in business while rapport and familiarity is developed within the local community.

The French will not compromise on quality the same way they won’t compromise on their personal presentation. An effort to take pride in what they do, in the baguette the boulanger bakes, the bouquet of flowers the florist ties together or the way the Parisian appears on a Saturday morning while picking up the baguette and flowers, is not just a sign of respect to others. It is a sign of respect to themselves.

When entering an elevator of any building, you will be greeted with a “bonjour monsieur/madame/mademoiselle”. A little later, this stranger you have never met before in your life will pause before leaving the elevator to wish you a lovely day, with a “bonne journée monsieur/madame/mademoiselle”. At first I was taken aback by this greeting. I was surprised someone I didn’t know had spoken to me and I didn’t know how to respond (we don’t normally talk to strangers in elevators in Australia). However, now it feels nice to be acknowledged and it feels equally nice to acknowledge someone else you don’t know.

4. The history, culture and monuments

Coming from a country as new and young as Australia, I was already in the frame of mind to make the most of being in Paris. Retire in Paris, FranceI love being surrounded by all this history. I love walking around, gazing up at the beautiful Haussmann era architecture (with those red potted geraniums and French wrought iron balconies!). I love being a metro ride away from the world’s most famous art museum. I love knowing I’m a train ride away from the Palace of Versailles and its picturesque gardens.

It’s even better now that I have become more of a local. I am never under the pressure to see everything in a week, I know the hidden entrances and I even know when the museums and monuments are open for free. The views I have seen of Paris at its famous monuments have been simply breathtaking. These views never seem to lose their magic, despite how many times I see them.

Even if you aren’t a history buff or an art fanatic, you will probably end up developing an appreciation for it by simply being in Paris. It’s almost impossible not to!



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  1. Dieu Chau Apr 9th 2014  2:34 am

    Thank you for the marvellous article, Nhan! Seriously enjoyed reading it and wish to fly to Paris right now. You are a great author!

  2. Margie Armour Jul 7th 2014  8:37 pm

    I loved reading this article.
    I also enjoy your blog. Please keep taking me around Paris with you.

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