As has been my habit for the past few years, I spent Christmas in Paris, where the festival is treated like any normal bank holiday. It’s traditional to pig out (usually on seafood) with your family and watch terrible TV on Christmas Eve rather than on Christmas Day itself, when all the cinemas are open and public transport operates a regular bank holiday service – a civilised alternative to the U.K. yuletide lockdown. Most of the shops and some of the bars and restaurants are closed, but you can always find plenty of places open to serve you food and/or a glass of wine.
As always, I spent most of my time going to films and exhibitions, drinking in bars or just walking around, taking photos – the ones here were all taken with the camera app on my iPhone. As you can see, I like taking pictures of opticians’ signs and tobacconists’ carottes, and managed to add a few to my burgeoning collections.
The terrorist attacks of 13/11/2015 didn’t appear to have had much effect on everyday Parisian life, other than the presence of armed forces standing guard over the Christmas markets or strolling down some of the busier streets. Otherwise, it appeared to be business as usual.
Films seen: Kill Your Friends, The Forbidden Room, Studio 54: The Director’s Cut, The Maggie.
Expos visited: Kuniyoshi, le Démon de l’estampe + L’estampe visionnaire, de Goya à Redon (Petit Palais)
Visages de l’effroi – Violence et fantastique de David à Delacroix (Musée de la Vie Romantique)
P.S. A Parisian friend gave me a magazine issued by the Mairie de Paris in February 2015 to celebrate the work of the cartoonist Cabu, who was killed in the Charlie Hebdo attacks in January 2015. Here are some pages: