We arrived in Paris this morning and, without wasting any time, headed into town. Actually, not into but right outside town, to the weekend flea market, Marche aux Puces St.-Oven. I haven’t been to Paris in 12 years, and what struck me the most was the number of beggars in the subway: some blind, some lame, and one woman in particular who was running around on her hands and feet like a dog, her knees were inverted in such a way, that her feet were facing back, not forward. This scene was better suited for the Middle East, not for a modern European metropolis. What made my feeling of being somewhere in the third world even stronger was the people of North African and Sub-Saharan origin who constituted about 99% of the pedestrians and subway riders in the area of the market.
The market itself is huge and a maze of streets with shops selling various, mostly expensive, antiques, some junky, some pretty cool. We priced an artsy coffee table from the 1960’s and learned that it was 14,000 euro. Then we admired an enormous ceramic tureen, 3 m long, evidently made for giants. Beside the antiques, we spotted several interesting characters, including but not limited to a transsexual or a drag queen, an elegant elderly man wearing a flowing long coat and a fedora, a duo right out of La Cage of Folles, and a women whose appearance would be well suited for a circus performer.
One of the stalls at the market housed a photography exhibit featuring John and Yoko right after they were married and came to Paris for their honeymoon. The photographer who took these pictures was present on the site and took a liking to Kenny, talking his ear off about his friendship with the couple.
From the market we walked several blocks through mostly African/Arab neighborhoods and back to Paris at Montmartre where we ended the day with a crepe bought outside an amazing chocolate shop.
Pictures are to come later at kentoff.zenfolio.com