Aero: Kimberly Gage – France 2015 – City Life

Aero: Kimberly Gage - France 2015 - City LifeCreative Commons Image via The LEAF Project

Aero: Kimberly Gage – France 2015 – City Life
Creative Commons Image via The LEAF Project

Aero: Kimberly Gage – France 2015 – City Life


Kimberly Gage

The first thing that comes to mind is the metro system! The metro system in Paris has got to be one of the best forms of transportation I have ever been on! The metros were clean, easy to use and punctual. I have never been one to say that I would want to take a train, but if the United States decided to construct these kinds of metro systems within the city, I would definitely use them. Once you figured out your route, it was easy to tell which station you would need to change or exit the metro. I also believe it would also greatly reduce the number of traffic jams on big city roads and highways significantly. In France, almost everyone took the metro because I came to learn that it is sometimes difficult or expensive to take driving classes and to get licensed.

Next would be the shops and boutiques. These little shops were unique and each had their charm that just drew me in every time. I was particularly attracted to the book shops; how many have you seen in city plazas or malls recently here in the United States? I can only think of two book stores that are far and few between: Barnes & Noble and the Lift Bridge Book Shop in Brockport, NY. The latter would actually come pretty close to what the book shops were like in France. It is small, usually not crowded, and quiet enough for you to leaf through a few pages before you purchase. In France, it is every booklover’s paradise! I didn’t mind that almost every book was in French (as they should be, respectively), and some had a section for books written or translated in English. Walking down the Seine River on either side of Notre Dame of Paris were these green kiosks that when opened would reveal merchant stands selling numerous treasures. A vast majority sold books while others sold small trinkets like old padlock keys, tin boxes, posters, postcards, magnifying glasses, magnets… I could go on and on! Some of these books were very old and were more costly to buy, but almost everything else was reasonably priced. If ever given the chance to return to France, I will visit every one of these stands to find an unusual find. Being a bookworm that I am, I miss walking down the streets and coming across volumes of these books the most.


ML@FLCC France 2015 Flickr Photo Gallery

As for food shopping, I had the opportunity to go to a Monoprix, a close French equivalent to Wegmans. It sounds funny to write that, seeing as how Wegmans is based off of the open air markets of France / Europe. The Monoprix I visited in Paris was set up exactly like any other grocery store here in the US, only it was two stories and had a parking garage under the main street. The prices for things like Nutella were much cheaper because it does not need to be imported like it does in the United States.

Kimberly Gage
LEAF Contributor