Sun Column on the Rive Gauche

I took eight years of French classes as a middle- and high-school student, and those courses’ textbooks inevitably had charming pictures of Parisian locales throughout. In trying to cover a wide range of French experiences, those books tended to show “everyday” life alongside the expected pictures of the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre, and so I came to associate all of these images with a sort of “imaginary,” idealized Paris.

Imagine my surprise when I arrived in France and found that it looks exactly like my books.

Sun Column on the Rive Gauche


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