I was cruising around my Google drive, as I do from time to time, and came across this little document I had made that time Lyn and I hied ourselves off to Paris for the best week of my life. People love to criticize the inhabitants of places like Paris and New York and call them rude and unfriendly, but I have found plenty of wonderful humans in both those places. Maybe it’s all in what you’re looking for. But this post isn’t to prove a point or really for any purpose other than to spread the warm glow those lovely people left. So without further ado, in Paris I ran into…
…The girl on the train into the city from the airport. The train was terribly packed (the doors literally closed upon me as I tried to squeeze myself in), but of course it was no fault of this girl’s. Nevertheless, she apologized for the condition of the ride, and wished us a nice trip.
…Several metro attendants who were more than helpful. There was the man who gave us extra tickets when we couldn’t make ours work. There was also the lady who sold me my Navigo pass, never mind that I didn’t have the mandatory photo to buy it. And there was the guy who kindly pointed out when I was trying to use a closed lane and couldn’t make it work.
…The man who passed us on the street, and hurried to his little girl who cried with joy, “Papa!” His eyes lit up to match hers, and he looked so happy to be off work and back with his whole world.
…The ginger man in Shakespeare and Company who delighted a couple of us with a mini jazz concert, just for the fun of it. He sang beautifully and soulfully, then chuckled when done and accepted a listener’s offer to buy him a drink.
…The pregnant lady who took pity on us thoroughly lost wanderers and looked up directions on her phone for us, even when she was clearly busy.
…The guy who helped out his friend in the time of need, and dabbed bird doo off his head after an unlucky pigeon accident.
…The waiter who noticed a stranded cat, squalling on the roof. He coaxed it to a tree, and then persuaded it to climb down to safety, never mind that he had other more important things to do.
…The waiter at Le Bouillon Chartier, who was just as friendly and merry as could be. He checked in regularly, and wouldn’t take our appetizer plates till we had cleaned off every last speck of foie gras. “It’s too good to leave!” He wasn’t wrong, either.
…The lady in the wee jewelry shop with the broken English. But she sure didn’t let it deter her- no, she chatted it up with us, even creating an imaginary future husband and children for Lyn, whom she would of course bring to Paris as their tour guide. She laughed at herself when she tried to insert the card into the calculator instead of the card machine, and completely made our night.
…All the guys, who didn’t catcall!
…The cafe manager who was overseeing three employees with Down’s Syndrome, and helping them provide great customer service.
…The lady who kindly offered to take our picture as we posed in the hall of mirrors in Versailles, being the touristiest of all the tourists. Really, all the people who didn’t mind our English and broken French words, but who were most helpful and courteous to us wayfaring strangers.
I could write many more posts about all the strangers in so many cities that have helped me along my way, but for now, do you have any good-hearted people to add to my list? I would love to hear.