Return To Paris––July 27 Part 1

Copyright 2009 Jens Haas -

Greetings in Paris follow an inexorable plan, albeit with contextual variation. In small shops, for example, there is always the same pattern, though it is uttered with seeming sincerity to each on every occasion. Sincerity is sounded at once in the tenor of ‘Madame’ or ‘Monsieur,’ a different intonation for everyone standing in line––seeming acknowledgement of our particularity. While that may be the rationale, shopkeepers sustain themselves in greetings all day by setting these to a kind of song, and that you are this Madame and not that is a function of where you fall in a phrase (and of course there are repetitions).