With the sun superimposed against a vast blanket of blue sky this morning – and armed with coats and scarves to cope with the cold – a group of friends and I spent the most part of Saturday morning in Montmartre.
It is a well known haunt for tourists, and for this reason I’ve generally avoided going there too much. It always seems more dignified to not gawk at the city’s monuments so that ‘people’ notice that I actually live here. So, ordinarily, I tend to yawn and look at things like the Eiffel Tower rather dismissively. Or, better still, simply walk past and perhaps cast an irritating glance that says “Oh, it’s the Arc du Triomphe again.”
Today was quite different then in this regard – because I lay aside my usual delusions and paranoia about being mistaken for someone who is visiting Montmartre for the first time. It was one of those ‘like a virgin’ mornings were a group of friends and I simply took the time to be a group of babes in the old sense of the word. Un-initiated, naive and experiencing the city for the first time. So, we hopped between historic spots in Montmartre – Erik Satie’s old place, Berlioz’s too, Lapin Agile among others. We also popped by one of the bars that feature in the movie Amelie, drooled over Berko cupcakes – all while taking in the fridge-light like “sunshine”.
In the end, the day offered up an important lesson. While there is something to be gained from not living like a tourist while living here – maybe I should not take being in this gorgeous city for granted.
So, henceforth I will gawk more, be amazed a little bit more and overcome my silly fear of exuding too much of a tourist aura. Let’s see how that goes.