Pat asked at dinner last night what our conclusions seem to be on the French people we've seen. In no particular order or importance, here goes.
They care very much for their history, and a huge part of their current life revolves around it. Many make their living preserving, displaying, and promoting the reminents of the past. A large part of the rest support those who do. They all seem proud of it.
They care for children. While there are childcare centers, children are (more than I have usually seen) in the arms and hands of their parents. Unaccompanied children are seldom seen.
They are very courteous. I've looked for those French whose reputation as snobs and rude characters has been portrayed so well in the media. While a few drivers could be said to be agressive, I can't say I blame them for trying to survive on such narrow streets.
They seem very well-dressed. I am an inveterate people-watcher, and France is full of people who spend quite a bit of attention on their appearance. Epecially shoes and scarves. They carry themselves with a kind of sartorial confidence.
Today, we took the Metro and the train to Versailles. Contrary to Rick Steeves' comments, I was dissappointed in it. How much vanity can you stand? If I saw one more portrait or sculpture of King Louis. No wonder the French had a revolution. I was looking for a bit more historical content, but I guess it's too much to expect from the times of Louis XIV. We bailed on the garden. A little too boring, even from the windows. Especially if you have to pay extra.
Tonight, we're headed out to the Jewish quarter for dinner (Sunday). We may take the Metro to Trocadero to watch the night light show at the Eiffel Tower (thanks, Anne).
To see the photos we took today, click on:
Sunday, Oct 25th