There are a lot of people in Paris. There are a lot of places to eat and a lot of places to go. Banoo and I have been out, walking (and now using our trotinettes which are way more efficient) and exploring the city we now call home, again.
There are a lot of things I like about living here. Most obviously, the food. Not every place in Paris offers stunning cuisine, but pop into one of the thousands of brasseries of cafés and you'll be given something hot, tasty, and filling. I may be tempting fate, but even the most dodgy, greasy-looking little hovels we may have popped into in a moment of desperation have been surprisingly good. (This is of course, taking into consideration that you must at all cost avoid the tourist-y areas.) And Berthillon ice cream? I don't even really like ice cream, but hot damn, the spiced bread flavour is a thing of heartbreaking beauty.
I also like people-watching. There are so many people here, smiling to themselves as they walk, gesturing madly while on their hands-free device (this always amuses me), or making out on the bridges over the Seine. There is such life in this city, and it is all the more apparent now after living in Helsinki for nearly two years. Helsinki is clean, safe, quiet- yes. But it is also felt half-asleep. If you walked downtown after 8pm, there were hardly people around, the streets were almost empty and it felt like the city has tucked itself neatly up, ready for bedtime. This is not a bad thing, of course, it gave the city a charming "village" feel, but sometimes, at 1am, you may feel like a walk, and maybe a crumble aux pommes and to see some signs of life, and that's where this city wins. I also love that after nearly 5 years away, the same staff at the same places are still welcoming us with the double-kiss and treating us like old friends, even if it is past midnight and we just want pudding.
As well as food and people, the light here is making me fall in love. The sun is up, bright, at 6am, and until 10 at night we have lovely, pure light. The shadows under the bridges, the shady respite under trees in parks- they all play a part in the light's charm. And, this humid weather we're currently having is leading to some spectacular lightening shows at night, too. Beautiful.
Most of all though, I'm enjoying Banoo becoming himself again. He is French, after all, (well, Franco-Iranian, technically) and this is his home town. I think he likes helping me with my French and making sure I don't get lost on the Metro as well so he can play my chivalrous knight in shining armour. Seriously, I'd be screwed without him. I cannot for the life of me pronounce the word for bottle in French. Bouteille. I just can't. I'd be a thirsty muhfugga without him around to order my drinks.