That was the week that was

I didn't know whether to do my usual write up of my week that was. After Friday's events in Paris, writing about my own small domestic ups and downs seems petty in comparison.

But to write about the events themselves, when I wasn't there and can lay claim to none of the wrenching sadness that the victims' families and friends feel, well that doesn't seem right either.

I will say that in London we have a special affinity with Paris. Certainly parts of London do remind me of Paris, and vice versa. Whether it's suddenly coming on a wide boulevard with outdoor cafes, or the statues at Kew Gardens and Chiswick House which always remind me of the Jardin du Luxembourg.

And Paris has a special place in my heart because of the time I spent living at Shakespeare and Company, one of my favourite places in the whole world.

On Twitter I read how Shakespeare and Company sheltered 19 people on Friday night, so they didn't have to turn to the streets and head home.

One of the things that always sticks in my mind from Shakespeare and Company is the sign downstairs which underpins its philosophy to welcoming strangers and drifters:

Be not inhospitable to strangers, lest they be angels in disguise.

And I was also reminded of this philosophy with the #porteouverte hashtag that was being used on Twitter on Friday, for people willing to offer shelter to others trapped unable to get home that night.

There are people that can write much more about Friday than I feel is my place. But I will say that as parents, we hold the next generation in our hands. All the people involved in Friday – the ones that helped others, and the ones that wreaked misery – were children once, as ours are now.

I think every generation of parents has wished and hoped for this, but wouldn't it be wonderful if the next generation is the one that truly brings peace to the world.





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