Paris is known as the city of Lights and as the city of Romance but she is also a city for children, the little kind and the big kind. Being a child in Paris is not a question of age, it's a mental state. You can be old and still be open the way a child is when playing. You can delight in the sounds around you. Dishes and silverware clacking in a café, an espresso machine snorting, waiters calling out orders to the kitchen, children at play, especially in the Jardin des Tuileries, can all start your imagination on a journey back to your childhood when everything was new and fresh and wonderful. You only have to be open to it.
Sunday afternoon in the Tuileries is a great place to recapture these childhood feelings, to experience them again through the radiant faces of the little ones and, perhaps, to feel like a child again. As you watch the proud parents rent 10 franc boats (these days 2 euro boats) from the vendor's cart you wish you were a child again. Around the edge of the fountain each bright eyed child has a wooden sailboat, a stick, and an anxious parent trying to keep up. The boats skim across the fountain driven by a pleasant spring breeze and are occasionally prodded back to the center of the fountain with a stick and a gleeful shout. The children want to independent and resist all efforts of parental help but occasionally look around to make sure Mère or Père is still there watching.
Some children have radio controlled battery operated boats and a hovering father who looks a lot happier. The child is usually looking more at the other kids than at his own complicated toy. Enjoyments in Paris are best experienced when simple – a glass of wine, a quiet café, or a simple wooden boat and a stick are all you need to be a child again in Paris.