Tuesday, 1 September 2009

Paris Above My Head

I chose the name of this blog several months ago when I first came to visit the small town on the outskirts of Paris where I now live. From now on, I'm going to refer to the town as as Perfectville, because if I used its real name, everybody would want to come and live here. You want quaint streets with delightful little shops selling everything you could ever need? Come to Perfectville. You like flowers arrangements and fountains in your town square? Come to Perfectville. You want shop assistants who recognise you and a market every Sunday morning? Perfectville is the place for you.

In fact, when I first came here, I was not convinced that Perfectville was the place for me. It seemed too perfect. I was sure I would be escaping at every opportunity to wander the imperfect streets of the capital and absorb its never ending culture. Hence the blog title. (Victor Hugo and the barbarians who turned four volumes of great literature into two hours of easily digested musical theatre, the author of this blog salutes you.)

And so it is something of an embarrassment to admit that in the time I have been here I have been to Paris only twice, once to see an American film in English at the multiplex cinema and once to buy a TV in the Auchan hypermarket at La Défense. At La Défense, I didn't even see daylight, never mind the city of lights. While only a short train journey from the city where everyone wants to go, I have spent my time furnishing my apartment with Swedish flatpack furniture, watching American TV series on DVD and enjoying the delights of the Perfectville boulangeries. To err is human indeed.

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