My mother and half my relatives are French, most of whom have lived in Paris at some point of their lives.. Me, who has visited the city on numerous occasions at different life phases, from toddler teen and adult.
Charlie Hebdo and Parisians at large want this message to get out to the rest of the world: Since the recent terrorist attacks, the world is responding with vigils, candles prayer but above all FEAR and discussions about war in general.. The French do not want pity, and certainly not more religion. What they want you to know is that they are proud people who will not submit to fear. They will not let their joie de vivre die.They will continue to be the world’s epicenter for love, and celebration. So here is a letter, from my Parisian inner child – to the rest of the world.
The next time you want to #prayforparis use your hands to uncork a bottle of Champagne (even if you don’t drink!) and celebrate the fact that if you are aware of the tragic news, it means you are ALIVE. Next time you wish to light a solemn candle and shed your tears for us, light a sparkler and watch mini fireworks dance above your finger tips. Next time you fear a crowd or concert venue, remind yourself that tomorrow is not promised to anyone.. so go out fearlessly and enjoy good music. Do not research our cowards, research our poets, painters and world renown chefs! Do not give us a Western remembrance like “We will never forget”. Decorate your tallest buildings with our flag to unify the world’s brave cities- but then after, we do wish you to forget. Life goes on and the more energy is put into violence, tragedy and sadness -the more it grows in the unified consciousness. Put your energy into peace, beauty and happiness. Turn off CNN and turn on LUV.