Thursday 16 December 2021

Evensong: Once Upon a Time in Paris


Erik Satie ~ Once Upon A Time In Paris (Artwork by Edouard Leon Cortes)


Mike said...

Quite evocative music and artwork. Once upon a time in Paris, I found it very peasant, it used to be a spot on our itinerary to the Sud in our mgb in the 70s. Happy times. Then I worked in Paris in the mid-80s. Enjoyed staying in a small 1 star hotel near Monmatre near Sacre Coeure (despite being on expenses); I used to walk all the way to my offices near the Champs Elysees; I used to eat in the same Arab restaurant every evening - Couscous Royale and a pichet of vin rouge, delicious. The people I worked with were the most arrogant and difficult I have ever worked with, despite them being in the same Company.

Subsequent visits have unfortunately confirmed its decline, and I haven't been there since the early 2000s. About 4 years ago my wife and daughter visited, and though they enjoyed some of the more historic parts, generally it was a story of decay, filth and hassle. One evening my wife instructed my daughter, as they were being followed by two gents with dark complexions, to run for her life. Fortunately, they made it to their hotel safely.

I'm not singling out Paris, visits to London have been the same. I lived and worked there in the 70s and 80s, and life was good. But the last visit I felt distinctly in danger, particularly in the evening and on the tube. I will not return to London or Paris again.

mrs ishmael said...

Ah, the past, mr mike, where they do things differently.
I posted this particular Evensong to cheer up mr bungalow bill, who has taken to brooding about politicians, but also as an homage to French art and music, because Macron has extended hostilities in his War on Britain by slamming the door shut and refusing British travellers entry to France. The excuse for closing his borders to the British is that the British are Infected and a cordon sanitaire is, mais oui, a necessity of the most regrettable. I hear he entertained the French nation this week to a two hour television monologue about how wonderful he is.
The decline of the cities over the last 20 years is definitely a thing. Mind you, attending the Earl's Court 1993 Paul McCartney Concert - part of his New World Tour, mr ishmael very nearly almost got into a fight and swore then that he wasn't going back to London again. On this occasion, very rarely, he was intimidated, because the Sturdy Beggar who had accosted him and objected to mr ishmael's robust refusal to cough up his cash, let it be seen that he was carrying a blade. However useful Swiss Army Knives are, they do involve a bit of fiddling about to extract the appropriate blade or tool. Probably just as well.