I lived just outside of Washington DC on 9/11. My commute took me past the Pentagon each day, one of the sites attacked that day. I was acutely aware that I was, by extension, a primary target. Yet nothing ever happened to me in the ensuing 13 years that I continued to live there.
I will return to Paris in a matter of weeks. I’m not changing my plans.
There’s risk every time we get in a car. I’ve lost friends in car accidents, I’ve even seen it happen.
Could there be follow-on attacks? Of course, though I’m not sure the risk of that is any greater today than it was yesterday. Indeed, in some sense the risks may be lessened because there are now fewer people in Paris aiming for such an attack than there were yesterday, by virtue of their having completed it.
I grew up in New York when New York was a very different city. I always carried my wallet in my front pocket, a habit that took a long time to break after I moved to California. It’s still good practice in certain places, think Las Ramblas in Barcelona and… Paris, where there are plenty of scams near tourist sites.
We should certainly take precautions against risk, but we also live our lives. And there are few cities as alive — for a visitor — as the City of Light.
Do you stand with me on this?