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Visiting Paris, post-election

February 15, 2009

A few years ago, I wrote in response to a Susan Spano article about how a person's skin color could come into play while traveling in Paris. Since then, I've traveled to France every year, and each time I've avoided Paris. But after four years, I decided to try Paris again. This time I traveled with a friend who, like me, is also a non-white American, To our surprise, most of the Parisian attitudes toward Americans seemed the opposite of what I had experienced.

As we strolled down the street, immigrants selling Eiffel Tower key chains shouted at us, "Obama, Obama, come, we give you special price." At first we thought the immigrants were just trying to make a buck, but soon realized they weren't the only ones with Obama Fever. At a restaurant, the staff asked if we had voted for Obama, a question that seemed to follow us. With Obama as the president of the free world, it creates dialogue abroad and an interest in Americans traveling while brown.

Kelly Montana

Santa Monica

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