An American in Paris
So much has been said and written about Paris
There is such beauty in the buildings and the people. One can barely walk 100 meters before seeing another building which is so impressive I just stop and stare. In 5 days I have walked over 42 miles. I was here in spring and saw the other monuments.
I gave a full day to the Louvre , art from around the world and time. One day for the Palace of Versailles and the gardens. and the rest just walking and traveling by the metro.
The crush of people can be best felt by take the train in to the center. The train arrives full and everyone on the platform crams in. It is not just standing room, there is barely room to breath. this process is then repeated at the next station.
One can live in Paris—I discovered that!—on just grief and anguish. A bitter nourishment—perhaps the best there is for certain people. At any rate, I had not yet come to the end of my rope. I was only flirting with disaster. … I understood then why it is that Paris attracts the tortured, the hallucinated, the great maniacs of love. I understood why it is that here, at the very hub of the wheel, one can embrace the most fantastic, the most impossible theories, without finding them in the least strange; it is here that one reads again the books of his youth and the enigmas take on new meanings, one for every white hair. One walks the streets knowing that he is mad, possessed, because it is only too obvious that these cold, indifferent faces are the visages of one’s keepers. Here all boundaries fade away and the world reveals itself for the mad slaughterhouse that it is. The treadmill stretches away to infinitude, the hatches are closed down tight, logic runs rampant, with bloody cleaver flashing.:180–182
Tropic of Cancer is a novel by Henry