City of Metro Love and a Stimulating Cocktail Recipe

City of Metro Love and a Stimulating Cocktail Recipe
If you’ve ever spent some time in the Parisian metro, you’ve surely seen the kind of couple that holds hands quite innocently on the metro platform. But once inside the moving train, they’re all over each other, indulged in slobbery kissing and even, in some of the more extreme cases, frantic groping. It’s enough to make you want to shout “Get a hotel room!” Right now, with the sultry summer temperatures, it really feels steamy inside those metro cars. Perhaps the heat spur lovers into action. Or maybe the movement of the trains, rocking their way from one station to the next through long, dark tunnels – powerful metaphors popularized by American blues songs – gets passengers in the mood. Ah, the Parisian metro! Photo © Allison Zinder It could be that the protection offered by the metro prompts public displays of affection, whereas at street level, lovers are less tempted to lock lips with such gusto. Or it could just be that Paris really is the most romantic city on earth, all the way down to its subterranean transportation system. Far be it from me to censure the passengers’ hedonistic enthusiasm – I find it charming – but what I’m wondering is how the metro inspires such amorous behavior? It’s not those aging yellow interiors, or the harsh glow of the fluorescent lights that prevent homeless passengers from dozing on the graffitied seats. But wait just a minute… Many of the metro stations that were once deteriorated and crumbling have been given a relooking, or makeover. A huge network modernization “has been underway since 1998 and will be spread over 25 years” according to the RATP website. The campaign – entitled “un metro + beau” – is the largest renovation the metro has undergone since its construction in 1900. According to the RATP website, it takes 88 metro tiles to cover 1 square meter of wall space. Photo © Allison Zinder So on your next visit to Paris, you’ll see fully renovated entrances and platforms, and maybe even a few maskless kissing passengers. If you hop out at the Père Lachaise station, you can visit the tomb of Édith Giovanna Gassion, who sang in 1947, “In Paris, lovers love each other their own way.” That was long after Louis Leplée called her the piaf, or little sparrow.

Lead photo credit : A stimulating Metro Mojo cocktail. Photo © Allison Zinder

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Allison Zinder is a gastronomy guide and culinary educator working in French food, culture, history, and art. A certified chef and pastry chef, she offers market tours, food history tours, food-related Study Abroad programs, and Food & Beverage courses at hospitality schools in Paris. Allison has lived in France for 25 years. She is passionate about sharing her deep cultural knowledge, and has created engaging educational experiences for over 4000 clients.