Today we met members of the Paris New In Town MeetUp group for a free tour of Belleville, in the way-out-there 19th & 20th arrondissements.
Yesterday, I met another expat group for lunch, a bunch of very nice ‘Old Paris Hands’ where I was a good 10-15 years younger than the youngest of the group. When I mentioned we had been looking for an apartment in the 19th, they collectively shuddered. Our relocation agent had the same reaction.
Most of the Parisians in today’s group hadn’t been here before either, but the area between the parc des Buttes Chaumont and Cimitèire Père Lachaise is rapidly being gentrified by younger Parisians priced out of the city centre and who don’t mind the seemingly-oxymoronic combo of grit, nearby parks, and village atmosphere.
Strangely, our group met at 3 pm, meaning of course we didn’t get moving until 3:30. By the time 5 pm rolled around the light was fading fast and I couldn’t take pictures of some of the best parts, such as the cute little homes (not apartment buildings, homes) on rue Irenée Blanc. Nonetheless, I was able to get a few shots in which are on my Picasa album.