Sorry to say, but this is not really true.
Rue Mouffetard, normally a lively street day and night, is empty since the January 7 attacks.
Friends in town this week have not had to wait in line at the Louvre, at the Eiffel Tower, at the Catacombs. In fact there have been no lines. Tourists have cancelled their planned travel to Paris. Parisians have cancelled their planned travel within outside of Paris. The word of the day is caution.
January sales - normally a time when shops are jam-packed with people profiting from deep discounts on all of the things we have admired but could not afford - have been a disaster. No matter how deep the discounts, Parisians are not shopping this year.
Other signs of #thingsarenotnormalinparis :
- Just up the street a 24/7 armed guard stands at the door of what may be the residence of prominent journalists who may also be Jewish.
- At the post office an armed guard checks your bags upon entry and exit.
- At Place d'Italie shopping centre an armed guard checks your bags upon entry and exit.
- Yesterday my metro line was shut down for quite some time. I could not make out the garbled announcement, but certainly saw the 25 armed guards in the station among the hundreds of waiting commuters. Something was up.
Don't get me wrong - Paris needs to take seriously the higher level of risk recently introduced. The armed guards are doing their jobs.
But let's not pretend this is normal.
Please see vigipirate. We are currently scarlet - the highest level of alert.