Postcards from Paris:{derrière les vitrines au Bon Marché}

It’s my third holiday-season in Paris. The feeling is similar each year with the familiar scents of chestnuts roasting outside of the grand department stores, snowflake motifs strung across all of the market streets, the trees that line the avenues and boulevards have lost most of their autumn leaves, and are now embellished with festive white-strung lights. There is comfort found in such efforts.

Instead of going late last night, I decided to awaken early while it was still dark to look at the Christmas windows at Le Bon Marché. It’s quiet in the mornings before the rush-hour traffic in the metro begins and long before the stores open their doors to welcome the holiday shoppers. With my early-morning ambitions I was hoping for inspired displays. I was hoping for something that didn’t emphasize commercialism, but instead captured a feeling of Christmas in Paris. Too often holiday displays exhaust labels and brands, making Christmas seem daunting and unaffordable. So I was pleasantly surprised to see how Le Bon Marché managed to capture the feeling I wanted to elaborate on: Christmas in Paris.
Well-known monuments such as the Eiffel tower, Invalides, and Le Bon Marché itself were featured, framed by the famous zinc rooftops. After three years, it’s possible to consider these things as ‘normal’, but something as simple and obvious as scenes of Paris were just what I needed to appreciate the season and the present. Because finding an escape can be nice and necessary, but perhaps the escape we need is to appreciate the present and the magic of the season.
Here’s to December almost here, and a month full of magic.


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