During the pandemic the walk has made a major comeback. I have always been a fan, so I am more than happy to see them trending as a part of daily life in the 2020s. And really, little is as deliciously French as going for a meandering walk- a long, slow saunter. You are doing what the French call flâner. Looking for a way to heighten your day? Indulge in a promenade.

For those who have spent time in Paris, a balade on the Seine is an especially sweet treat. Walk carefully over the sidewalk and hear the church bells ring and the birds chirp. See the street performers dazzle you with their skills as a wayward child crosses your path. Right now we can use our imaginations to remember what it feels like to amble along the Seine (or maybe try to find our own “Seine” in Boston?). Follow us below for a multi-sensory stroll to help spark your imagination.

Sight


Miss the sights of the river Seine- the Louvre to your left, the Conciergerie to your right? Take a peek at this video to help you reminisce about the sights of Paris.


Sound


Paris is full of sounds: the chatter of the French and the tourists, the screeching of the ambulances, the clip clop of the heels on the pavement. There are the street musicians, and if you want to get typically French, the old-fashioned accordions making all your Parisian dreams come true. What do you hear when walking your local path? Add this classic piece by Edith Piaf to make your walk sound a bit more like Paris.


Taste


While a coffee to go is more an American tendency, a baguette in your hands, your bag, or your bike basket is perfectly permissible in France. On your walk, why not indulge in a bite of baguette before you head home to dinner?


Touch


Remember the bouquinistes? The booksellers along the Seine offer much in the way of Parisian culture. In fact they applied to be added to UNESCO’s world heritage list. To touch the pages of the well-worn books and flip through the trinkets sold in these magical green stations reminds us of a Paris of long ago.


Scent


Strolling through Paris can be a delight- or not- for the nose. Maybe you stroll past a boulangerie and smell fresh bread or buttery croissants or maybe you inhale sweet cigarette smoke from your neighbor. Maybe you smell the garbage lounging in the street or maybe you smell the cool stones of an ancient building after a late spring rain. If you could bottle up the scents of the streets or the Seine, what would it smell like?

Envie de se promener avec nous ? Join us on May 15 for a special FCC member walk where you can put your strolling skills into practice!

Natalie Collet

Former Membership Manager

From the Midwest, Natalie is a Francophile at heart. Her interest in French started when studying ballet and​ the language and culture entranced her through her student years.​ She became involved with the - Alliance - in the suburbs of Chicago after she spent an unforgettable year teaching English in a French high school near Bordeaux. She is happy to join the team in Boston and work with the members to provide them with unique opportunities​, ​quality programming​, and a community through French!

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