And they lived happily ever after!
A damsel in distress, a valiant prince charming and a breathtaking kiss; these are the intents of how love should be. Disney has taught us that happy endings and unconditional love is possible. A love that is expressed in music, heroic acts, strolls through enchanted landscapes and carving of initials in the trees.
So, when we find the one that sweeps us off our feet, we too want to be melodious, walk hand in hand through unforgettable places and carve our love perpetually.
Unsurprisingly many, me included have chosen Paris as their city of love. A city that is historically rich, architectonically opulent and culturally magnificent deserves such a title. Maybe the Eifel tower was the stage where you got engaged or the nervy first kiss happened on the bank of the Seine or neither of them and as for me Paris is the place that retains some of your happiest memories.
As any city, during the day Paris is crowded, touristy and sometimes even smelly, however when the sun goes down and the lights come up, all city exhales romance! Even during the day it is almost impossible not to stumble in some act of romance or unresolved love, such as Quasimodo and Esmeralda in Notre Dame, Phantom of the Opera in Palais Garnier or the most recent love locks in Ponte des Arts.
The use of love locks is a recent practice with unknown origin but that conquered the world. With the initials or names carved in a padlock, a couple locks their lock (love) on a bridge panel, throwing the key away into the bottom of a river and perpetuating their love. This practice has been a source of controversy, as many bridges were being damaged and compromising the wellbeing of locals and visitors. As a result, Ponte des Arts love locks is no more. The French said ‘Au revoir’ to so much international love! I also have been there, took pictures and even found it charming in a cliché kind of way. However, looking at it from a romantic perspective, ‘would you really want your love to be constricted to one overcrowded place as it is slowly being consumed by rust and damaging everything around it?’
Looking from such perspective, the once romantic act of capturing eternal love through the use of a love lock becomes hideous and not so romantic after all.
So when in Paris, let’s love and be loved!
Personally, my favourite romantic things to do when in Paris are:
- Evening stroll, when the lights are on. Walking through the Ponte des Arts, admiring the illuminated Notre Dame Cathedral, Institut de France and Eiffel Tower
- Taking the Bateaux Mouches and experiencing a trip through time with a glass of French red and Édith Piaf as soundtrack
- Having a picnic by the Seine
- Night visit to the Louvre
- Enjoying life in the Jardins des Tuileries