For all the beauty and splendour of Paris, it is still a city that enjoys getting down and dirty. The sound of the morning street-sweepers is a daily reminder of the revellers that partied hard here the night before. Without the swish, swash and scratch of those brooms, Paris would look utterly dishevelled. The street-sweepers are the humble guardians of the city’s seemingly permanent glamour.
Every morning, Paris awakens to the impatient murmur of hungry people queuing at the boulangerie, anxious for a hit of buttery pastry to get their day started. Happy banter and chatter at the Marché de la Création in Bastille’s bustling marketplace speaks volumes about the city’s love of its artistic community. The deafening clamour of the metro, as it wiggles and shakes its way through Paris’ underbelly, is as reassuring as the quiet footsteps of people strolling through the Jardin des Tuileries, and as comforting as the serene trickle of water in any one of the beautiful old fountains that are scattered across Paris. Sirens record the city’s sins, church bells its virtues. And all the while, Paris watches as her many children weave in and out of the streets, whooping and playing.