As I drive through the city in a Paris taxi, I gaze out the window in awe of the graceful architecture, the almost regal apprearance of the buildings that have been here for centuries. And then I think about snippets of conversations about a world-wide economic crisis, and wonder how many of those crises have those buildings weathered….
Seems to me that the buildings represent something that it is a bit less evident in the US, simply because we are a relatively new land, with most of our country built in the last two hundred years or less. So we don’t have the stately presence of history to remind us that life just keeps going on, and on, and on.
The buildings may have changed ownership over the years, but they are still here. The shops sell different merchandise, perhaps, but they keep inviting businesses to open them. There are many shops in Paris and Barcelona that have served customers for what seems forever, they are landmarks, fixtures of the urban landscape.
I find this very reassuring, calming even. It reminds me to not get too caught up in the fluctuations of the economy; instead to reflect on the resiliency of human beings.
It reminds me to appreciate the struggle of humans to find their order, their place in the world, the way to live with others and keep evolving. Being human isn’t easy; it takes a lot of effort to live well and find the peace of mind to truly cooperate with others.
So I stand in awe of human beings as well as the structures they have built…. And yes, I know I’m one of them, and that makes me feel really good inside.