Paris is mind-blowing. Paris is beautiful. Paris is unique. Everywhere we go (online or in our thoughts), there will always be the repeated-to-exhaustion picture of the Eiffel Tower. I wanted to go beyond, or in front for that matter, and explore whether there is more to Paris than the cute little cafes and the naturally elegant smoking mademoiselles.
To my surprise, I did not have to dig in deep, quite the opposite – I stayed on the surface and captured the most beautiful, less-known yet equally sophisticated face of the French capital. This spontaneous project made me realise how little we appreciate cities the way they are and always try to search for the most popular tourist destinations, just to take a selfie there and post it to the world to envy. In my opinion, there is more to every place then just taking a snap.
“People create stories which define cities”
As a culture student, I am constantly learning to understand people. We all interact with each other through the way we dress, we speak and we act. Culture is embedded in us and influences us from an early age. Therefore, for me, Paris is not about the landmarks but about the streets, walls, walks, pavements and the river where you can easily bump into the people who define this place. They are the ones who create the stories that are associated with the city and maybe one day, you will become a part of it too.
Keeping my eyes (and occasionally mouth) wide open allows me to embrace new ways of living, try to understand different standards and set of values. The door, the lamp, the window is not an object, it is a sign which tells us about the person who lives there, who works there, or who walks by every day.
“Embracing new ways of thinking and staying open-minded”
It might seem unrealistic, but being aware of what is around us gives our lives a whole new meaning. Understanding different cultures can be hard. However, showing an interest and staying open-minded when interacting with people from different backgrounds can be life- changing. And that is why am I adoring the streets of Paris and, for that matter, of any other place in the world.