Joanna Walsh, otherwise known as Badaude, runs a blog about life in Paris and the UK. She’s a starer, a doodler, an eavesdropper, a gawper, an dawdler, an urban randonneuse. She’s a writer and illustrator, a regular contributor to The Idler and The Walrus as well as many other national and international publications. She’s currently writing a book about escaping to Paris.
What is your relationship with the city?
Appropriately perhaps, considering it’s Paris, it’s a bit like an affair. I first went there secretly, without telling either family or friends. I have many friends in Paris now, but I still have a personal relationship with the city which I – sometimes – don’t have to share with anyone else. People have always come to the city to reinvent themselves (and again to revient – or return): So many famous ‘Parisians’ you care to name were actually from elsewhere, from James Joyce, Josephine Baker and Picasso to – now – Manu Chao, Charlotte Rampling, even Nicolas Sarkozy. Paris is a city of expats – of fortunate dépaysement.
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