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Old 06-08-2011, 12:29 PM
 
Location: South Beach and DT Raleigh
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Washington, DC comes to mind first because of its layout and its height restrictions on buildings. Like Paris, DC has both tight neighborhoods and grand public spaces. Like Paris, DC has an iconic tower (the Washington Monument) similarly commanding like the Eiffel Tower. Like Paris, DC is on a river. Like Paris, DC is the nation's capital. Like Paris, DC is filled with museums and attractions.
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Old 06-08-2011, 01:17 PM
 
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Aaaah, but it must be said . . . If you have ever visited Paris, what enchants the heart is not the substance of the city, but its spirit. I visited Paris four times and wrote an essay after my first visit that sums up my love for this city. There really is nothing quite like Paris:

Can A Man Love A City The Way He Loves A Woman?
I Can. I Do. My Love, My Beautiful Paris


IS IT TRUE LOVE? Well, a full year after my first visit to Paris, I am moved to write this essay. You see, my feelings did not fade with time. Isn't that true love? Why do I love Paris? Simply because it is the world's finest city.

Paris has it all. Romance, great food, beautiful people and magnificent architecture. For me, the love was not for big things; The Eiffel Tower, The Louvre, The Champs-Elysées. True, those sights were impressive. However, what moved me, enchanted me, and seduced me, was the soul of the city. It is a truly human city in scale and design. As a New Yorker, I come from a town where architecture is designed to intimidate, to awe, to overpower the senses. Paris, on the other hand, enchants you with details--stonework lovingly shaped by human hands. Buildings are created with an artistic sensibility that invites the eye to linger, to be entertained. . .

The Parisians are also a source of unending fascination. Paris has a middle class that is not yet given to the excesses all to common to American life. The life is simpler. The typical Parisian simply owns less 'things.' Yet, he or she has richer conversation, is more erudite, and passionate about the world's events. The dress is always 'tres chic.' Men and women both dress in a simple yet stylish way that conveys casual elegance. Indeed, if you see a pair of Nikes or a sweatsuit on the street, it's probably an American tourist. Of course, a people with less 'things' have more time for each other. More time for an evening at the cafe with friends, or a picnic at your favorite spot just outside the city. Indeed, more time for romance.

Simply being in the city makes you feel romantic. The city flirts with you, as a woman of great charms. Her streets have details worthy of an artist's brush. A day does not go by without seeing a setting that can inspire poets. You feel the urge to share the city with someone special.

Finally, the food. Perhaps I felt so romantic in Paris because my stomach is the way to my heart. Sharing a good meal is a pleasure Paris enhances in a unique way. My most memorable meal was in the evening, just before sunset. A street vendor in the Plaza de Republique (the Bastille area) makes the finest banana and Nutella (a spread made of nuts & chocolate) crepe. I would purchase a crepe and a cheap glass of wine. Then, I would take an improvised seat at the foot of the monument in the middle of the Plaza's traffic circle. While striking up a conversation with whoever was sitting at that spot, I would enjoy this joyously simple meal. While I did have an occasional meal at the impossibly expensive cafes, the simpler fare was for me the most memorable. . .

Here's a little tip for the day you plan to walk down the avenue Champs-Elysées. At the foot of the avenue, just before the Grand Palais, is a small park with benches. In the park is a vendor that serves delicious foot long hotdogs on a warm crusty baguette with spicy dijon mustard (the real stuff). Have that with an Orangina while sharing a bench with other travelers. I tell you my friend, it is a slice of heaven. . .

This is from a website named "Paris, My Love" that I made over eleven years ago after my first visit to Paris.
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Old 06-08-2011, 01:23 PM
 
Location: East Coast of the United States
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^ Great essay, and accurately portrays the experience of Paris.
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Old 06-08-2011, 04:06 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Design7 View Post
Quote:
Can A Man Love A City The Way He Loves A Woman?
I Can. I Do. My Love, My Beautiful Paris

Paris has a middle class that is not yet given to the excesses all to common to American life
.
Middle class in Paris? A rare thing.
Paris is like Manhattan there is almost only upper class and lower class.
The middle class are single or in couple but without children who live in small apartement.
The middle class famillies live in suburbs.

This essay look like a tourist vision of Paris, I mean Paris is a great city but don't believe that bit is the city of romance that hollywood movie show.
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