I took this photo on September 13th from the window of the apartment I was staying in with friends in the 7th arrondissement. Shortly after, we took a bottle of champagne to the Eiffel Tower and popped it open right as the lights display began. We were surrounded by people doing the same and when the lights kicked on, the reaction was cheering, clapping, people hugging, kissing, celebrating. It wasn’t a special night per se. The Eiffel Tower glitters with light every night from 9pm to 1am but there is an undercurrent of joy, of celebration, of togetherness that pulses through Paris and it feels natural to let that undercurrent carry you. So… Champagne. Hugging. Toasting. Together.
Obviously, 2 months after this photo was taken was a very different scene in Paris and it goes without saying that the terror attack that unfolded on Friday was horrific and evil and many, many thoughts and prayers have been with the victims and their families ever since.
I leave this here with the sentiment that there is no darkness that can stifle the light of a community, of a culture that carries it with them so strongly as the people of Paris do. Paris is and will always be the City of Light.