There's a certain magic that comes to mind when one mentions Paris. Its reputation enthralls those who've never been, and its charm ensures those who have come again. I don't know if an intense, nostalgic, magical feeling is naturally occurring in the city, maybe the stones and soil that act as the base of the city are enchanted, or if the charm is simply the result of centuries of acting as popular backdrop for emotional films, photos, and artistic innovation. But I don't really want to know where it's coming from; it's not an intriguing type of charm, but rather one to be simply accepted and left on it's own. Magic and charm fill the streets of Paris as blood through veins, most likely because that allure is the blood of Paris - it keeps the city alive and thriving.
It's not just the city that is appealing, but rather what it represents. Those traditionally French buildings are, indeed, beautiful, but they are beautiful because of what they stand for. For me, right now, Paris is a goal, Paris is the place where everything will work out magically, like the city itself. The sight of those buildings make me think of aspiration and inspiration. Paris represents a general happiness, hope, and independence. The reason that Paris is so appealing to so many is that it is exactly what one is looking for. Yves Saint Laurent was looking for creative experimentation and challenges, Julia Child for improvement, and plenty others for various reasons. Paris already has so much history, but it also has room for the future, and room for the now.
I'm not sure if locals find the city as charming as those who don't know it, and I suppose I'll never know, unfortunately not being a native Parisienne. But I do know that Paris has a power to captivate and inspire, that Paris is something abstract and meaningful, that it's not just the intersecting lines and stars on a map that make up Paris, but rather the feelings. One can experience "Paris" outside of the physical Paris, and it can be just as magical, but nothing compares to the relief of knowing that you're in a place of character and aspirations, or the hope that you may one day get there.
I'm sorry but I had to include this one. For those of you not born after 2000, or parents those, this is a still from the Disney Pixar movie, Ratatouille, a moving film about trust, hope, friendship, and food. I most definitely recommend watching it.
This is actually my favorite out of all these Paris photos because this is what I picture as my Paris, my goal, my hope.