14 November 2015
Having had an opportunity to get out and about this afternoon and assess the atmosphere in this city, two things struck me as remarkable, in the aftermath of last night’s horrific attacks.
Firstly, despite a quieter and more somber atmosphere in Paris, the streets were busy with tourists, reflecting their desire not to be restricted in wandering this city. Secondly, while many of the larger department stores were closed, many of the supermarkets, pharmacies, cafes and smaller boutiques were open, and their staff were defiant about wanting to stay open and support a return to normalcy.
Paris – and the French people – have undoubtedly been deeply wounded by these attacks, but the city and its people are also finding strength in their resilience; sadly, the need of 24hr news channels to constantly provide “new news”, means that the media coverage often concentrates more on the horror of the past event, while not affording sufficient coverage to the efforts of those living and working here, to support a return to a more normal way of life.
I was comfortable walking around the city today, meeting and chatting with different people; I am also proud that my team and I (as ESOMAR) can – albeit in just a very small way – support this return to normalcy, and reinforce people’s desire not to be intimidated by last nights awful actions.
ESOMAR Director General