A few months ago, I happened upon a photo album–more like a notebook, really–from a trip I took to Paris about 15 years ago. I’ve written about it before, and it remains to this day the best place that I have visited. There are some days when I think it’s Maui instead, but if someone were to ask me where I’d like to live if money (and language barriers) were no issue, I think I’d probably say Paris.
As I was flipping through the images of the Louvre and the Eiffel Tower and the other places we went–at least before our camera was stolen at Luxembourg Gardens–this image jumped out at me for some reason. It was a man who dressed in white and stood stock still, in order to resemble a statue. He was a street performer, and he was located on one of the sidewalks near Notre Dame Cathedral.
It occurred to me that this picture was taken in the pre-digital age of photography. The further we get away from that period (it ended around 2002 for me), the more we forget what it was like. In particular, the uncertainty of how photos were going to turn out is now a thing of the past. The viewfinder tells all, these days.
So what happened was some person went to pose with the human statue, but at the last minute, the statue turned to look at someone else. It worked out fine for me, but the other person’s picture was ruined, in a way they probably didn’t realize until they got their film developed.
Time marches on, and I wonder if this Parisienne statue is still working the beat somewhere in Paris. Lucky him if he is, but I rather doubt it. Unlike an actual statue, he–like the rest of us–has to move around from time to time.