Sunday, January 2, 2011

Paris in a 9/11 world

 On our first day in Paris, Kyra and I visited the Louvre.  We took the metro there and entered the Louvre via the connecting hallway with the metro. We encountered what we now think of as standard museum security - a bag check and a metal detector.   We didn't think much of it.

What did catch our eye the next day were the soldiers with rifles wandering through the crowds at the base of the Eiffel Tower.  It's a bit disconcerting to see guys with guns wandering through mobs of tourists with cameras.  It was a sad reminder that we live under the threat of terrorism - even on vacation.

We would in one moment we would be enjoying the sights and snapping photos and the next we would see camouflage and rifles.  They were at all the major Paris sights - Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, Monmartre and I would presume outside the Louvre.

When we were at Monmartre, Kyra and I happened upon some street singers who were collecting quite a crowd.  The young men were African, the crowd was international (Tunisia, Uraguay, Portugal, US, Denmark, Germany ....) The concert turned into some what of a group sing along with U2's One and various Beatles' songs like Imagine.

I snapped the photo below while the music was playing and the crowd was singing together.  The guys with guns are there - do you see them?

I think we need to keep singing Imagine.

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