Have I ever told you about the time I almost decked a guy in Paris?
In 2014, my wife and I achieved one of our top bucket list dreams when we moved into an apartment at the base of the hill below the Sacré-Cœur Basilica. My daughter CeCe and I would often play on the hill and climb the stone steps that led to the basilica at the top. The hill attracted throngs of tourists in the summer eager to enjoy the panoramic view at the top.
And where there were tourists, there were street vendors. You couldn’t walk two steps up the hill without an aggressive vendor stepping in your path. One after the other, dozens accosted tourists all of them selling the same worthless stuff. Because there was no differentiation between them and little value to their tchotchkes, they had to resort to obnoxious, manipulative tactics to get attention and make the sale.
One day one of these fine gentleman thought he would continue blocking my way until I bought something. Meanwhile, my three-year old daughter was quickly getting farther away from me putting crowds of tourists between us. Some sort of parental instinct kicked in I had a sudden desire to deck the guy. Thankfully I found enough sense to settle for a gentle-ish push on his shoulder so I could step around him. Eventually, I learned how to dodge and tune out the vendors. Read more