Category Archives: France


At the end of my short stay in Paris, I made my way to Pigalle, a famous area to experience the nightlife in Paris. Pigalle is more or less like a nightclub hub, but is also full of sex shops and strip dance clubs. When you walk along the street, pimps from gentlemen’s clubs approach you and invite you to watch live nude shows. Sometimes they even offer you free entry, only to trap you into paying more later. They also try to guess your nationality, and by mentioning the name of your country, they attempt to find a way to talk to you and convince you to visit their club. Most of the time, people think me to be a Spaniard; when they approach me, they even start to speak in Spanish. In Pigalle it happened that a club pimp called me ‘Irani’ at once! I said ‘merci’ and went away. Amused at the comment, I told myself: hehe it seems that my fellow countrymen are here quite often!

On that night, the streets of Pigalle were full of pimps who desperately wanted to get me into their strip clubs. There were many drunk youngsters wearing hoodies, many of whom were huge, blood-smeared, and battered. Some of them approached me and asked me something in French; as I did not respond, they then began swearing aggressively. With smashed beer bottles scattered everywhere and a closed metro station, I only wanted to know how to find a way out of the place. Locating a police car, I asked two officers hopefully if they could guide me out of Pigalle in English. But they shook their heads and said, “Je suis désolé! No English!”. Frenchness, right?

Luxor Obelisk

At the centre of the Place de la Concorde is a tall Egyptian obelisk, one of the 3,300-year-old twin obelisks that the Egyptian government had gifted France in the early nineteenth century.

As Persians would say, Muhammad Ali Pasha, the then-ruler of Egypt, thought that he had inherited the two ancient giant obelisks from his father, and therefore, that had the right to offer them to anyone.

Luxor Obelisk, on the right the Hotel de Crillon. Paris, May 2012.

Luxor Obelisk, with the Eiffel Tower in the background. Paris, May 2012.