Ils ne dorment pas

by jemma margaret

Thanks to this guy, and probably others before him, New York has earned the official title of the City that Doesn’t Sleep.

But did Frank Sinatra ever go for a jog at 6 in the morning? If he had, he would have noticed the streets were curiously empty. The people who are out and about at this hour are starting their day, not continuing on from the night before.

In fact, this was one of the primary motivations for waking up early to run. Less traffic, fewer people, a quiet city.

Paris is also quieter at 7 in the morning, then, say any time between 9 AM and 3 AM. The comparative being the key part of the adjective here.

While in New York I might see a small group at a café eagerly sipping coffee, in Paris I have run passed not a few groups drinking beer, wine, or the hair of whatever dog is still biting them. The party has not quite ended. Observing this curious cultural difference, I now play an interesting game of guessing which passersby are going out and which are coming home.

If someone were playing a similar game and saw me run past (or rather, the bolt of speed that I become while jogging) they would hopefully correctly discern that I am not finishing up a wild evening in which I chose to wear spandex and a clip on fanny pack.

On the other hand…

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